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  1. Today we announce the release of patch version 1.2 for Insurgency: Sandstorm. This includes many changes from last weeks CTE, including a new map, new game mode, two new weapons, plus numerous bug fixes, changes, and optimizations. You can read some of the key highlights below: New ContentNew map “Outskirts” playable in Firefight, Push, Checkpoint, and Hardcore Checkpoint.[newworldinteractive.com] [newworldinteractive.com] New official Coop game mode Hardcore Checkpoint Movement speed is significantly reduced. Enemies are harder. Friendly teammate indicators only show when a teammate is nearby. Objective indicators are hidden in the HUD. If you die, you will respawn with a Mosin bolt-action rifle and Makarov pistol. You must resupply at a Supply Crate to get your Loadout. There are only two Supply Crates. One will spawn on a random objective, the other will always spawn on the final objective. You can only resupply once on a Supply Crate. Small Ammo Boxes will give some ammunition for the weapons you are carrying. [newworldinteractive.com] New Weapons M82A1 CQ anti-materiel sniper rifle for Security Marksman class. M99 anti-materiel sniper rifle for Insurgent Marksman class. M2HB .50 Cal mounted machine gun for Security vehicles. [newworldinteractive.com] New Cosmetics Balaclava and neck gaiter Facewear cosmetics for Security faction. New skull pattern for Insurgent balaclavas. M90F camouflage for Security. Cloth gloves for Insurgents. [newworldinteractive.com] New Features Class Loadouts can now be customized on the main menu through the Customize button. Enabled voting to kick players on official matchmaking servers. Overhauled community server browser to support favorites, showing empty and full servers, passworded servers, minimum and maximum player filtering, filter reset, search box and better sorting options. Bots will now randomly select all of their loadouts, including weapon attachments. Updates to the helicopter damage models: The top and tail rotor can be destroyed with anti-materiel rifles. Pilots, co-pilots and door gunners can be killed via normal weaponry or an anti-materiel rifle if behind a windscreen or metal plating. Ammo Carrier vests and backpacks can now be customized with different colors and camouflages. See the “Equipment” slot in Appearance under the Customize menu. Dust kickup particles now play when weapons are fired while prone on appropriate surfaces. Added support for storing key bindings and various other settings that are system-agnostic in the Steam Cloud. Local Play is now accessible if you’re offline and unable to sign into New World services. Appearance menu improvements: Different Ammo Carrier and Armor Loadout options can now be previewed on your character. Your character can now be rotated. Upgrade to Unreal Engine 4.22: Upgrading to the latest version of Unreal Engine was a large task, however it was a necessary part of optimizing the console versions, and will enable greater performance and development possibilities in the future for all versions of Insurgency: Sandstorm including PC. Optimization Implemented skeletal mesh merging to reduce CPU overhead of character animation. Implemented UE4 4.22 animation budget allocator to reduce CPU overhead of character animation. Disabled tessellation by default due to a higher than intended GPU cost, it may still be manually enabled. Optimized particle overdraw by implementing particle cutout textures. Fixed certain UI elements incorrectly performing tick logic after being closed. Optimized update frequency of world soundscape actors. Optimized logic, physics, and animation performance impact of helicopter air support. Reduced concurrent particle impact effect limits. Visual Improvements Character movement interpolation improvements; characters will no longer jitter when moving in third person close to the camera. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdkGVettsHk Fixed broken terrain shadows on low settings. Facial hair improvements on low quality settings. Holographic sights reticle has been improved for better target acquisition and clarity. Tweaked reticle brightness values for the 1x Red Dot, 1.5x PK-AS and 1x OKP-7 sights. Weapons with extended magazines and belts will now display correctly in the Loadout menu. New special animations for performing an Ammo Check while deployed. New first person deployed crawl animations. New third person prone deployed reload animations for MGs. Adjusted first person sprint animation speeds to better match footstep sounds. Reduced the playrate of first person rifle sprint animations to improve their look. Improve the synchronization between first and third person leaning animation. Improved melee and knife animations. Cosmetic visual improvements: Updated Very Dark skin tone to be more visually different than the Dark skin tone. Updated long sleeve button down dirt mix. Update on roughness of most gloves. User Interface Reduced size profile of team score element on spectator UI. Improved the alignment of the create party icon. Added a black variant of the 4x SU230 which shows on darker weapons. Plus much more...You can view the full change list on our official website: http://newworldinteractive.com/insurgency-sandstorm-version-1-2-patch-notes/ View the full article
  2. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  3. Hi everyone, Today we are launching a preview of our upcoming version 1.2 patch. This includes; two new weapons (the M99 and M82A1 anti-materiel rifles), a new map ‘Outskirts’, a new gamemode ‘Hardcore Checkpoint’, equipment customisation, new cosmetic options, an improved server browser, support for offline play, and numerous bug fixes including character interpolation. This content is now playable on the Community Test Environment. However please remember this is a preview build, so some issues are expected (see ‘Known Issues’). If you encounter any problems or have feedback for the development team please respond in the CTE sub-section of the official game forums[forums.focus-home.com] or Steam forums. Our team will be monitoring feedback during the CTE and aim to push this update to players on the live version of Insurgency: Sandstorm soon. You can find some of the key new features and known issues below. NEW FEATURESNew map “Outskirts” playable in Firefight, Push, Checkpoint, and Hardcore Checkpoint New official Coop game mode Hardcore Checkpoint. Movement speed is significantly reduced. Enemies are harder. Friendly teammate indicators only show when a teammate is nearby. Objective indicators are hidden in the HUD. If you die, you will respawn with a Mosin bolt-action rifle and Makarov pistol. You must resupply at a Supply Crate to get your Loadout. There are only two Supply Crates. One will spawn on a random objective, the other will always spawn on the final objective. You can only resupply once on a Supply Crate. Small Ammo Boxes will give some ammunition for the weapons you are carrying. M82A1 CQ anti-materiel sniper rifle for Security Marksman class M99 anti-materiel sniper rifle for Insurgent Marksman class Loadout selection is now editable from the main menu Balaclava and neck gaiter Facewear cosmetics for Security faction New skull pattern for Insurgent balaclavas M90F camouflage for Security Equipment customization Ammo carrier vests and backpacks can be customized with different colors and camouflages. Ammo Carriers and Armor preview buttons in the Appearance menu Character rotation in the Appearance menu Overhaul of community server browser including: Favorites, Showing empty and full servers, Passworded Servers, Minimum and maximum player filtering, Filter reset, Search box, and Better sorting options Vote kick allowed on official matchmaking servers Offline local play without New World services Steam cloud support Skeletal mesh merging which reduces CPU overhead for characters Dust kickup particles now play when weapons are fired while prone on appropriate surfaces Upgrade to Unreal Engine 4.22. Upgrading to the latest version of Unreal Engine was a large task, however it was a necessary part of optimizing the console versions, and will enable greater performance and development possibilities in the future for all versions of Insurgency: Sandstorm. VISUAL IMPROVEMENTSCharacter movement interpolation improvements; characters will no longer jitter when moving in third person close to the camera. Fixed broken terrain shadows on low settings. Facial hair improvements on low quality settings. Weapons with extended magazines and belts will now display correctly in the kit select menu. New special animations for performing an ammo check while deployed. New first person deployed crawl animations. Adjusted first person sprint animation speeds to better match footstep sounds. Reduced the playrate of first person rifle sprint animations to improve their look Improve the synchronization between first and third person leaning animation. USER EXPERIENCEFull re-write of Explosive Drone and helicopter pathing. MOTD announcements with images and link support. Added icons to the main menu which inform the user if they are connected to both NWI services and Steam or not. Altered the text for the leave competitive game dialog to clearly indicate you will receive a leaver penalty for leaving early. If the player has no regions selected when attempting to matchmake the select region dialogue is now displayed instead of just attempting to matchmake with no region. NOTEABLE FIXESDoors should no longer desync for those joining a server before the server has completed loading a map. Fixed a visual issue causing character models to appear to sink into the ground. Fixed issues with weapon scope stencils clipping the weapon in both bipod and up positions. Various improvements to soundscape portals ensuring transitions from indoor to outdoor are reliable. A ton of other reported bugs and issues. KNOWN ISSUES[Audio] Some players have experience audio cutting out / looping [Scopes] Some players are reporting missing retinal / crosshair [Bug] Blue box over scopes – Should be fixed, please report the issue if you experience it [Audio] A10 Audio cutting out – should be fixed [Cosmetics] Several there are lots of morph issues on character [History] has been disabled for CTE, due to known issues [Fire Support] Choppers are causing slow down on some systems [Settings] Steam Cloud doesn’t synch “GAME” Settings [Map] Outskirts is WIP so expect some polish over the course of the CTE and beyond [Scope] LQS material broken when spawning with M99 and 7xM99 scope after the round started [Visual] GasMask has known visual issues [Visual] Restricted Areas sometimes look strange on the map, but they shall still work as intended [Settings] Rebinding certain keys may lead to actions becoming doubled / ignored [Stability] Some users may experience a crash when exiting the gameView the full article
  4. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  5. Hey everyone, my name is Michael Tsarouhas, I am the lead game designer on Insurgency: Sandstorm. In today’s post we want to talk a little about our upcoming new official cooperative mode Hardcore Checkpoint. We’ll go over our motivation behind creating the mode, the pillars that govern its design, and how we turned traditional Sandstorm gameplay on its head and created something that plays unlike any of our other game modes. We’d also like to take this opportunity to say that you can check out all the content coming in our next update including Hardcore Checkpoint in our Community Testing Environment from May 20th to May 27th. Just go to your Steam Library and look for “Insurgency: Sandstorm Community Test Environment,” which you should own as long as you own Insurgency: Sandstorm. The idea for Hardcore Checkpoint actually came from our community rather than any sort of flash of inspiration we had ourselves. Just a couple months following Sandstorm’s release in December, we saw that a lot of players were already modding co-op on community servers. They increased enemy counts, turned up the AI difficulty, and made other tweaks. While these modifications might sound simple, they went a long way in making things way more intense. YouTubers like Karmakut, OperatorDrewski, Bluedrake42, and others took this to another level, turning off the HUD and playing with as few as just two players. The result was more a much more difficult, tense, and tactical play that you can’t always get from normal Checkpoint mode. These community servers and videos demonstrated to our team that there was a clear interest in gameplay geared toward our hardcore audience. People who aren’t afraid of a challenge and getting struck down by our AI. One of the unique things about Insurgency’s design is that it sits in the middle between the fast paced military FPS games like Call of Duty or Battlefield and the slow paced ones like Arma, Squad, or Escape from Tarkov. Because of this, when it comes to designing new game modes that actually change gameplay fundamentals, we can lean one way or the other. In February we released Team Deathmatch, an FPS classic obviously geared towards players who prefer fast-paced arcade-oriented gameplay. But now, with Hardcore Checkpoint, we’re leaning in the other direction. Hardcore Checkpoint is founded on the ideas of scarcity and adaptation. Until now, all our game modes have been fairly consistent in terms of equipment. When you die, you respawn with all your gear as if nothing happened. In Hardcore Checkpoint however, this isn’t the case. If you die in this mode, when you respawn you’ll come back with only an unupgraded Mosin rifle, a Makarov pistol, and a smoke grenade. You can get your Class Loadout back by resupplying at a Supply Crate as you normally would, but there are only three crates in the map, and you can only resupply once at each crate. You get one crate at the beginning to start you out with your goodies, one that spawns at a random objective, and one at the very end for the final counter-attack. That’s it. This means players need to be much more careful, and when they die and respawn, they need to manage their ammo and make do with what they find. They can gather weapons and ammo off the ground or search for randomly spawning Ammo Boxes which will give a few magazines for the weapons they’re carrying. New enemy AI behaviors have been added. Bots in Hardcore Checkpoint are fewer, but they are more trained, sneaky, tactical, and human. They’ll fire more accurately, wait to ambush you, use better weapons and weapon upgrades, hunch down in cover when suppressed, and retreat and regroup when overrun. Also, they dress cooler. Movement speeds have been significantly reduced. Sprinting across a road without cover to flank an enemy is going to take longer, and isn’t always the smartest decision. Normal standing movement is now more of a tactical glide. When we first started playtesting, this felt pretty weird. We felt like slugs and we felt restricted in our abilities. But as we played, we realized this was exactly what we needed to feel, and was important to what the mode is trying to accomplish. The slower speed makes players even more vulnerable than they are in normal play, and thus raises the tension. It gives off some strong Rogue Spear or old school Ghost Recon vibes where every movement and action feels much more deliberate, and there are more opportunities for what game designer Brian Upton calls “anticipatory play”. In Hardcore Checkpoint, you’re not a rocksteady gunman or unstoppable competitive sprinter; you’re a soft squishy human trying to keep your gun up and on target as you pitter patter forward and hope a suicide bomber isn’t waiting around the corner. Running around everywhere will carry a much greater risk of getting shot, on top of the already great risk of losing that sexy Mk 17 Mod 0 with suppressor, optic, laser sight, and extended magazines for a dumpy old bolt-action rifle from WWII. Each of the eight classes is limited to just one player per class. Official matches are still set at eight players, however we found that player counts of six or even lower were also a lot of fun and congruent with the slower pace. With one player to a class, everyone has a specific role to fill and must take advantage of their unique capabilities to help the team. The Gunner and Marksman both need to be in position and set up in those windows as soon as a counter-attack starts. The Demolitions needs to be diligently putting grenade launcher rounds and other explosives into any dangerous looking rooms or buildings. The Observer needs to be with the Commander at all times in case fire support is needed, since there is never another Observer to fall back on. Friendly teammate indicators are hidden at a distance, so target identification and communication are paramount. Hardcore Checkpoint is a brutal mode. There will be sudden death, there will be friendly fire, there will be stupid Observers, and there will be a time when you get very angry at us for not making the Mosin cycle its bolt faster. But when a team does their jobs right, communicates effectively, keeps the tempo slow, and gets into their groove, Hardcore Checkpoint is fun as hell. It’s been exciting for us to experiment with the traditional Checkpoint co-op that we and our community know so well and to create a totally new experience out of it. It stands as an example of how we (and modders) can take the Insurgency: Sandstorm platform and push the design in totally different directions. We look forward to having you all play it, and please let us know what you think in the comments, on the forums, social media, Reddit, etc. Hardcore Checkpoint will be coming out in our next update, and is playable as both Security and Insurgents on all our maps including our upcoming new map Outskirts. Remember you can also check out Hardcore Checkpoint and all the other content coming in the next update in our Community Testing Environment from May 20th to May 27th. Go to your Steam Library and look for “Insurgency: Sandstorm Community Test Environment,” which you should own as long as you own Insurgency: Sandstorm. We hope you enjoyed this community update. Be sure to stay tuned for more.View the full article
  6. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  7. Hey everyone, my name is Michael Tsarouhas. I am the lead game designer on Insurgency: Sandstorm. As a part of our effort to steer post-release Sandstorm onto a community-oriented path, we’re going to be releasing community updates like this one which provide an inside look at development and feature upcoming content. Before we begin, please remember to fill out our new survey here[www.surveymonkey.com] and let us know just what content and changes you’d like to see for Insurgency: Sandstorm’s ongoing post-release development. As mentioned in our recent survey post, one of the things we learned from the results was that players are hungry for new maps. So today, we’d like to take some time to talk about our upcoming new map Outskirts, formerly known by its internal name “Compound”. Below you can see my interview with Zach Snyder, one of our level designers, here at New World Interactive. A professor in architecture, Zach was originally a custom map maker in our community as far back as the original Insurgency: Modern Infantry Combat mod for Half-Life 2. Later on Zach created Tell[insurgency.fandom.com], a map entry which won 3rd place in our 2014 Gamebanana Mapping Contest[gamebanana.com] for the original Insurgency standalone. (Zach’s “ins_hermes” map for Insurgency: Modern Infantry Combat released back in 2008 and featured a six objective Push layout with custom textures, models, and sounds.) (Tell features a dense layout with a steep urban incline and tall tight alleyways. It is still today the most played Insurgency 2014 map in both versus and cooperative play.) Our team was so pleased with Tell, we decided to hire Zach and put it in-game officially. He’s with us still today, and working now on our next map Outskirts for Insurgency: Sandstorm. Summarize Outskirts for us in five words. Varied gameplay in new setting. Where did the idea for Outskirts come from? During the early concept phase of the map, we were poring over reference images and became interested in several that depicted collapsed and semi-collapsed buildings. I was excited by the implications of taking a conventional space, tipping it over a bit, and getting a new set of opportunities from the strange new space that’s been created. This idea became the collapsed building that is now the centerpiece of the map. The construction theme was initially a utilitarian choice, as it afforded a lot of flexibility in how the geometry of the buildings might be optimized for gameplay, but it also seemed like a compelling narrative direction, given the ideas of destruction that seeded the conception of the map. In terms of gameplay, what sets Outskirts apart from other maps in Sandstorm? Push players will find more breathing room on this map than in some of our other maps, while Firefight players will find themselves playing in tighter objective layouts that were conceived, from the ground up, as Firefight specific. Coop players will be able to sample both styles of gameplay in what I think is, end to end, a longer than average playthrough with a very diverse set of objective environments. In terms of visuals, what sets Outskirts apart from other maps in Sandstorm? There are three distinct areas of the map, each differing thematically. The first theme is the construction site, which has both wide open gameplay in a series of trenches between buildings, and close quarters fighting inside the buildings. The second is a residential compound on a hill overlooking the construction site. Up there you have mid range and close range engagements in a series of well defined lanes. The third takes place around a stream in a valley, where a shantytown surrounds an electrical substation. The layout here is also lane-based, but with some longer lines of sight. The observant player will notice some of the same building blocks in this map that exist in our other maps, but there’s been a concerted effort to use those pieces in novel ways and squeeze a little bit more life out of them. In addition, we’ve produced a bunch of new assets to support these new themes. In what ways did you collaborate with our other level designers on Outskirts? Unreal Engine’s level editor allows you to simultaneously work with a multitude of level files under the umbrella of a master level file. What this means is that while I work on blocking out one corner of the map, another level editor can be in another corner polishing the initial building layout I did the week before. At the same time, other designers and artists can be under the hood designing coop routes, optimizing our geometry, or making and placing level-specific art assets. In terms of the actual teamwork on this map; while I’ve done pretty much all level design and a good deal of the polish on the map, we traditionally work in a way that makes good use of a particular level designer’s interests and skills. For instance, Steve Cron, who was making custom coop maps as “Chief-C” for Insurgency 2014 and has been on the team for a while now, did all of the coop layout and bot placement on the map. Jan Huygelen, who works magic inventing new ways to use the building blocks we use to make our levels, crafted all of the interiors in the compound. And our lead level designer Jeroen van Werkoven, who always knows more than me about the technical aspects of what we’re doing, came in and did all of the optimization on the map (he’s still at it as I type this). How did the map change throughout its design? Initially, the map’s sole theme was the construction site, with a small group of houses atop a hill where the defensive cache was to be located. As I started to really flesh out the construction area of the map, it became apparent that it wasn’t particularly conducive to our Firefight game mode. Having the Push layout all but locked in at that time, this presented an opportunity to design a dedicated area for Firefight, and the small set of buildings on top of the hill became a full-fledged Firefight layout. At the other end of the map, I had put a small stream in pretty early on, thinking I might return to it as an intro for one of the coop layouts in the future (something like the beginning of Buhriz coop in Insurgency 2014). I was discussing this idea with another one of our level designers Jonny Hickenbottom, and his enthusiasm really set the shantytown theme into motion. He searched out references, enlisted the help of our lead environment artist Vuk Banovic to pump out an exhaustive set of assets for the theme, and produced a little character study for me to build upon. Given all the possibilities this suggested, I felt well equipped to change the scope of this idea and eagerly started designing another Firefight layout that we could come back and overlay with some coop gameplay. The study that Jonny made for me became the C objective in this Firefight layout. What’s your favorite area of Outskirts and why? Forced to choose, I think the shantytown area is my favorite. As a team effort, it all materialized and came together so quickly and organically very near the end of development, yet in some ways, it feels the most fleshed out. How does your background in architecture affect your level design? A building is a solution to an incredibly complex problem. Designing one involves confronting an overwhelming set of variables that are both at odds with and completely interdependent on one another. As a result, approaching any of these variables in isolation is a prescription for failure, as the solution to one problem is bound to create ten more problems elsewhere. As an architect, it’s imperative that you establish a top down understanding of the complicated relationships between all the variables, and strive to find a solution to every problem, if you can, through the lens of a single unifying idea. This is why architecture students don’t sleep. I alluded to this sort of economical thinking above, when talking about the decision to go with the construction theme. The theme sponsors a design solution, in that the basic modular system gives us more freedom to move pieces around for gameplay. It sponsors a narrative solution in its reference to a cycle of building and destruction. And it also sponsors a budgetary solution, in that the extensive use of concrete across an entire third of the map significantly curbs our material usage, which is one of our chief concerns when optimizing maps, especially in an area where the player can see so much of the map at one time. I studied Fine Arts as an undergraduate, and have always been obsessed with drawing, painting, and making things in general, but it was my architectural education that really brought discipline and structure to a lot of my artistic impulses. The obvious answer to the above question is that I come into level design knowing how a building is put together, but I think the more meaningful answer is that, in a more general sense, architecture has elevated my ability attack all sorts of creative problems. What are some other games that inspire your work? I think that most of my direct inspiration comes simply from the prospect of exploiting the mechanics of the game I happen to be working on, so it’s tough for me to make a direct connection between what I love in games and how I think when I’m designing for them. That being said, there are aspects of certain games that have left a lasting impression, and in some way or another, become assimilated into the way I think about my own work. For instance, I love the visual language of The Witness, the minimalist palette of Inside, the emergent gameplay of PUBG, the atmospheric serenity of Dear Esther, the slow tension of the original Insurgency mod, the tactics of Left 4 Dead versus mode, the no-nonsense approach of the new DOOM, the sheer panic of playing an Age of Empires game against another person, the cause and effect of Sim City...if I don’t stop here, I’ll soon be listing Atari 2600 games. Thanks for taking the time to check out this community update everyone, and thank you Zach for your time and answers. Outskirts will be coming in our next update and features Checkpoint, Push, and Firefight game modes. Remember, be sure to fill out our new survey here[www.surveymonkey.com], and stay tuned for more community updates.View the full article
  8. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  9. Please see our second post-release content survey here[www.surveymonkey.com] and give us your feedback on where to take new content and make changes to Sandstorm! Last week we released the results of our last survey and showed off some of the new content we have in store, like new maps Outskirts and Ministry. Now that we’ve had a thorough look at all the data, it’s time for a follow up survey to help further determine the direction of Sandstorm’s post-release journey. If you missed the first survey, don’t worry, now’s your chance to let your voice be heard! In this new survey we’ve narrowed our focus a bit. Questions include which new features, cosmetic categories, game modes, weapon upgrades, community management, and general balance improvements you’d like to see. Thank you for your participation and feedback. Fill out the survey now[www.surveymonkey.com] and help decide on upcoming content!View the full article
  10. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  11. Hi everyone, A few weeks ago, we made a blog post previewing some upcoming content and explaining the change in our development philosophy to take a more community driven approach to our post-release content production. Over 9,000 of you took part in our survey, sharing your thoughts on the direction you feel we should take the game. Our team have been analyzing your feedback and would like to thank everyone for taking part in helping shape the future of Sandstorm. Below are some of the results and what players can expect both near and long-term. We asked you: Where do you think the developers should focus their efforts if you had to choose one? The results clearly indicated a strong desire for new features and content (44%), followed closely by optimization at (33%). Quality of life improvements (9.5%), gameplay and balance improvements (7%) bug fixing (5%) and graphical polish (1.5%) made up the remaining sum. Over 75% of you said features, content, and optimization were the number one priority, and that will be our main focus for the coming months. While we do have new content planned, performance optimizations continue to be a top priority for our programming team ahead of our upcoming console launch. We asked you: Which new content excites you the most? The results here overwhelmingly suggested that new maps are the community favorite with new maps making up 50% of the vote, followed by night maps at 23%. We are happy to confirm that the next update (v1.2) will include a new map ‘Outskirts’ which you may have seen us tease on social media under its development name ‘Compound’. We can also share that remakes of Insurgency fan-favorites, Ministry and Sinjar, are in the works. On top of these three maps, we have two additional maps in progress, which we will share more information about in due time. (Preview of our upcoming map Outskirts) We are aligned with the community’s feelings towards new maps and are excited to expand the game with great new map content and lots of other creative maps when the community gets their hands on the level editor. Sharing progress of new maps even while they’re in a more early development stage will be a more common occurrence going forward, most likely in the form of screenshots or interviews with our level designers. (Work in Progress images of our upcoming Ministry remake) Later in the year, our team will also be working on night variants of our maps. These will include additional gameplay changes such as night vision goggles, flashlights, AI changes and more. New weapons was the next highest accounting for around 20% of the vote. As previously announced, the next update will also feature two new anti-materiel sniper rifles for the Marksman class: the M82A1 CQ for Security and the M99 for Insurgents. Questions 7 & 8 showed over 60% of respondents requested modern weapons and 65% requested more weapons for the Rifleman, Demolitions, Commander, Observer and Advisor classes. This data indicates a high interest in assault rifle-type weapons, and we can confirm we have a couple in the works. We asked you: Which new feature excites you the most? The results here overwhelmingly show a desire for mod support with 42% of the vote. Modding is a major part of New World’s company identity. We always strive to make our games open and accessible to players who wish to modify or create custom experiences; it’s how many of our team got their start in the industry! We are committed to adding mod support for Insurgency: Sandstorm as part of our post-release plan. The process in Unreal Engine 4 is different than that of the Source Engine, and our team needs to do a bit of ground work first to make it possible. However it is on our roadmap, likely for the second half of this year. Our current plan is to first roll out a beta level editor (as supported by the survey results) then implement a mod-distribution platform, followed by an expansion into other areas of modding, such as custom weapons. New official game modes were the second most requested feature making up approximately 21% of the vote. We have a new ‘Hardcore Checkpoint’ mode releasing with the next update which appeals to more serious cooperative players, with additional new official game modes to come that will be guided by your feedback. The results from question 10 in the survey indicate that the three most popularly requested official game modes include a tug-of-war style PvP mode based on Frontline from Day of Infamy (23.2%), a single life PvP VIP escort mode based on Ambush from Insurgency (22.7%), and a horde inspired mode with multiple defense points based on Outpost from Insurgency (17%). We can not say at this time which new mode will be next, but we can say that we are committed to these three game modes and will update you over time as they get closer to release. In regards to new arcade modes, team-based King of the Hill and Domination inspired modes were highly rated (receiving approximately 24% of the vote each), as well as a free for all Gun Game mode (19%). Considering the relative similarity between the team-based King of the Hill and Domination inspired modes, we are unlikely to pursue both. To determine which one we will pursue, we will poll everyone once again to hopefully get a more clear winner between the two. We asked you: Which map scale and map release frequency would you prefer in the future? (More frequent small scale maps, or less frequent larger scale maps) The results indicated the community was fairly split, with no clear outcome. Our team will experiment with both current scale and smaller scale more CQB focused maps. From a development standpoint smaller scale maps are likely to have better performance, however larger maps allow for different play styles with increased use of optics and vehicles. We currently have several maps already in production. However, we will be polling the community in the future on additional topics such as map density, thematics, setting and more. We asked you: Which competitive features excited you the most? The ability to organize matches without matchmaking (36%) and exclusive cosmetics rewards (30%) were the highest rated features in this category. In the months ahead we hope to implement these new features, improve the general competitive experience based on continued feedback, and also continue supporting as well as offering cash prizes for community events. We asked you: If there were any maps with particularly bad performance for your PC. The overwhelming majority of players said “All maps perform fine for me” (68%), which is great to hear. However Refinery saw a much higher percentage of respondents saying it was the least performant (16% compared to 4-7% for other maps in the list). Our ongoing performance improvements should help for all maps and we will be looking to collect more data on memory, CPU and hard drive configurations of players with issues. However, our team will revisit Refinery to see if any specific improvements can be made to that map. We asked you: If there were any game modes with particularly bad performance for your PC. The overwhelming majority of players said “All game modes perform well for me” (73%). Push seemed to have a larger percentage of respondents saying it was the least performant (9% compared to 2-5% for other modes), which is likely attributed to the higher player density. Our team will once again be looking to collect data from users who are having performance issues and we encourage players to submit information about their hardware and software set up via the performance discussion and support section of the Steam forums or Focus forums[forums.focus-home.com] by following our performance feedback guidelines. We asked you: If there were carrier or armor options you would avoid? The majority of respondents said they use all carrier options (41%), with most players avoiding no carrier (30%) and almost a quarter of players avoiding the heavy carrier. The majority of respondents (34%) said they use all armor options, with more than a quarter of players generally avoiding taking no armor at all (28%). 7% of players avoided taking light armor compared to 29% who avoided taking heavy armor. Based on this feedback we feel armor and ammo carriers are being used as intended in our design philosophy where heavy variants are used less frequently than their lighter counterparts. However, we do acknowledge there may be ways we can greater incentivize the use and utility of heavy armor and carriers provided it is in line with balanced play, and we are open to hearing your feedback. Please bear in mind, heavy armor during early beta and alpha stages of Sandstorm was better at stopping bullets, but this created a meta in the game where everyone would just take heavy armor. This went against our principles of maintaining a low TTK and ensuring Loadout choices promote good diverse gameplay, similar to our philosophy behind not having AP rounds as in the original Insurgency. Near term content While some of the feedback from this survey may take time to implement, our team also has several features that were already under development which players can expect to try out soon. These include; an XP gain system for community servers, server browser improvements, support for offline play, Steam cloud support, new cosmetic categories (hint: we see you, subreddit), Loadout customization in the main menu, character rotation in the Appearance menu, plus numerous bug fixes and optimizations in addition to the map, game mode and weapons mentioned above. Feedback from our community is crucial for helping shape the long term future and evolution of Insurgency: Sandstorm. Our team is committed to significant post-release support on PC as well as development of the upcoming PS4 and Xbox One versions. We encourage players to make their voices heard by leading constructive discussions online and responding to our follow up surveys. We note the need for improved communication and our team will be endeavoring to increase transparency by sharing more of our development process and upcoming content through a series of regular developer blogs, starting with a closer look at Compound. View the full article
  12. : You can find the details for this event on the announcement page here. View the full article
  13. As revealed in our latest community update post, we will be taking a more community-focused approach to post-release development in the future. As part of this shift, we've released the post-release content survey[www.surveymonkey.com] to try to get a good sense of what changes, features and content the community wants in the future. This is a great opportunity to contribute your opinions, thoughts and ideas. We highly suggest you fill it out as soon as you can. Thanks for all your participation and feedback. We look forward to hearing from you! TAKE THE SURVEY NOW![www.surveymonkey.com]View the full article
  14. Hi all, Jon Higgins here from New World Interactive. We’ve seen a lot of discussions recently asking what our team has been working on and we’d like to take this opportunity to fill you in on some of the things that have been going on behind the scenes at NWI. First of all, our development team has continued to focus on improving the PC version of Insurgency: Sandstorm and that remains our top priority right now. As previously announced, our programming team dedicated the entire month of March to bug fixes and optimisation to try and address some of the important feedback gained from your posts and reviews. While we have released 4 patches in the span of roughly 30 days, we acknowledge there is still room for improvement. Our team is currently working on some more significant longer-term changes. We are glad however to see reports of performance increases and general satisfaction improving overall for the community since the March push. We’ve been working hard to increase frame rates and improve memory management. However, with thousands of different PC hardware and software configurations, it is really important that our team gathers as much information as possible. If you are having issues, please submit a support ticket with as many details as possible by following our community feedback guidelines. While the bulk of our efforts have been focused on optimisation and bug fixes, our artists and designers have also been hard at work on new maps, weapons, game modes and character cosmetics. Our upcoming map: Compound - set in an abandoned construction site. You can also see a teaser of one of the new weapons in our recent interview with NoFrag[nofrag.com]. Below, you can see them in full: the M82 and M99 anti-materiel rifles. We have also been working on a few new features, including an improved server browser which you can see below, XP gain for community servers with normal game rules, AI improvements, a custom map editor, matchmaking improvements, and a new Arcade mode. We’re also working on a new official game mode that is a “hardcore” version of Checkpoint. This mode introduces some unique mechanics and a different pace of gameplay geared towards our hardcore audience, and it’s been really fun already in playtesting. We’ll be revealing more information about all of these additions in the coming weeks. https://youtu.be/XcCo5DSqyGo As mentioned above, our management and community teams have been at several industry events recently. At the start of the month we were at the Game Developer Conferencee in San Francisco, learning about the latest industry trends and new technologies, along with meeting many of our partners such as Steam, Epic, Sony and Microsoft to discuss the road ahead. We were also present at the Unreal Engine booth, recruiting potential UE4 developers for our new Calgary office[www.gamesindustry.biz], which will be opening in the summer. You may have read that our team was having a few visa issues, however, we are confident these will be resolved. We are looking forward to having more of our team members on-site as well as continued team growth, allowing for better communication, improved knowledge/skillsets, and ultimately better products for you our fans. If you have at least 3 years of UE4 experience and are interested in working with us, please email your CV to http://mailto:Jobs@NewWorldInteractive.com Earlier today our Project Lead Jeremy Faucomprez gave a talk at UnrealFest Europe regarding ‘Design, Production, Cosmetics and Ballistics for Insurgency: Sandstorm’, during the event he will be attending talks and workshops about the latest innovations and techniques in UE4 development to bring back to our team. Also this week Sandstorm’s Lead Game Designer Michael Tsarouhas (also known as Mikee) and I will be attending our publisher Focus Home Interactive's “What's Next?” event in Paris on Wednesday and Thursday. There we will be meeting with journalists, retail distributors, and industry partners to give an update on our plans for Insurgency: Sandstorm this year. Be sure to follow @InsurgencyGame and watch out for the #WhatsNext hashtag! What happened to your developer live streams/forum interaction? Our Community Manager Alex Blonski has taken some time off recently after the birth of his first child, and our community team has been tied up with some of the events mentioned above. Our social and community output has slowed a bit accordingly, and we’re sorry for the lack of updates. We know that it can be frustrating to not hear anything, and that you can feel as though your voices are not heard. Rest assured, they are. We plan to get back into the swing of regular communication shortly, and it is an area in which we plan to improve. Livestreams will likely become more event focused, hosted when we have new content to show or exciting things to talk about rather than being a weekly event. We are exploring more of a focus on written blog post style communication as well as more activity on our social media. However, we would love to hear your feedback about the best ways to communicate in the survey at the end of this post. What about consoles? One of the most common questions we get is about the console release of Insurgency: Sandstorm. Although PC is our primary focus at this time, we are still targeting a PS4 and Xbox One version for 2019. Right now we can’t give a specific time frame or release window. However, we will give updates later in the year as we get further into console development. What about? Community server XP, modtools, night maps, Mac/Linux, [insert feature here] etc.. We have a lot planned for the life cycle of Insurgency: Sandstorm, and we hope to emulate the type of post-release support we provided for the original Insurgency. Insurgency was a living product that grew in content, features, and players for over three years after its 2014 release. With the Insurgency series, we have always had a philosophy where the launch is just the start of the content and feature development cycle. From there, we continue to build and expand over time through regular, free content updates. We are applying the same mindset to Sandstorm. We have some great new content in the works, and lots more planned for the future. However, we would also like the community to help shape the future of Insurgency: Sandstorm. As previously announced, we will be taking a more community-focused approach to post-release development. We invite all players to take part in our upcoming Insurgency: Sandstorm post-release content survey to help guide our team in our development over the coming years. You can find the link to the survey below: Insurgency: Sandstorm Post-release Content Survey[www.surveymonkey.com] I hope this brief update sheds a bit of light on what our team has been doing and our goals for the future. We will continue to monitor your feedback and adjust accordingly. In light of recent feedback, we will make a greater effort to put out updates on a semi-regular basis rather than more sporadic major content updates. If you wish to contribute your voice, we encourage you to please fill out the survey, talk to us on the forums, Reddit, our social channels, and let us know what excites you the most! Best, Jon View the full article
  15. Today we announced a hotfix for Patch 1.1.4 to address a few additional issues. As always we encourage our community to continue reporting bugs and providing constructive feedback for our team by following our community posting guidelines this allows us to swiftly respond to issues. Optimization Optimized bone count and limited vertex influence for Insurgent armor and carrier gear combinations. Bug Fixes Fixed an issue with Insurgent gear causing the carrier not to show on certain armor combinations. Map Balance & Fixes Farmhouse Fixed missing textures on a large group of rocks next to the river. You can view the full changelog of version 1.1.4 along with yesterday's announcement here: https://steamcommunity.com/games/581320/announcements/detail/1779393376018882593View the full article

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