Archive for the ‘Press Releases’ Category

New Release: 0 A.D. Alpha 17 Quercus

Sunday, October 12th, 2014

Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, proudly announces the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 17 Quercus”, the seventeenth alpha version of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. This alpha features a major gameplay rebalance, units on walls, trigger support, improved mod support and more!

Easy Download and Install

Download and installation instructions are available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. 0 A.D. is free of charge and always will be. Although you might find some people selling copies of 0 A.D., either over the internet or on physical media, you will always have the option to download 0 A.D. completely gratis, directly from the developers.




Moreover, you can redistribute the game and modify it freely as long as you abide by the GPL. You can even use parts of the art and sound for your own projects as long as you abide by CC BY-SA. No “freemium” model, no in-game advertising, no catch.

Top New Gameplay Features in This Release

Screenshot showing the lobby with the new profiles

  • Major Core Combat Rebalance: Now, if you send only one unit type to battle, it fares poorly against regiments of the same size that mix more than one type, e.g. melee and ranged units. Technologies as a whole have been made more expensive and unrelated technologies have been “unpaired”. Some stats have been adjusted to make training some units viable. Buildings are now a bit easier to destroy. Temporarily, we have removed formations, and we plan to re-implement them again in a more balanced way.
  • Naval Map Support: The computer opponent now uses transport ships to colonize other islands and attack enemy bases, but naval combat (i.e. ships against ships) is not yet implemented.
  • Improved Fog of War: The Fog of War is the part of the terrain that has been scouted already but is not in vision range of your units or allied units. Buildings and changes to resources such as trees or metal mines are now also hidden in the Fog of War, and not just units. Hence, players now need to scout more often to find unclaimed resources on the map, hidden enemy outposts and more.
  • Units On Walls: Units can be garrisoned in wall segments, and appear on the walls at predefined prop points. (Importantly, while the units can attack and be attacked individually, they cannot walk around on the wall.)
  • Multiplayer Lobby Profiles: Users can now view profiles of other players from within the lobby. Profiles contain user statistics such as rating, games won and lost, highest rating, and ranking that can be accessed on-demand.
  • New Maps: Siwa Oasis (skirmish map) and Schwarzwald (random map).

Screenshot of the random map Siwa OasisScreenshot of the random map Schwarzwald

Scenario and Mod Design

mod_loader_smaller

  • Triggers: A “trigger” makes an action occur in the game if a specified event takes place. For example:

    If you build an outpost within a certain area (event), your enemy’s walls are destroyed (action);
    Alternatively, if a timer runs out (event), an army spawns on the border of the map and marches towards your city (action);
    Or, if a certain building is destroyed (event), the player who owns it loses the game (action).

    The new trigger system is perhaps the most important feature that was missing to make narrative campaigns and scenarios possible. Triggers also make it easier to design custom victory conditions, or even multiplayer maps with unique gameplay aspects. Events and actions are easily extensible with some Javascript knowledge and offer a huge set of new possibilities for creative map designers.

  • Two new maps make use of the trigger system in Alpha 17:

    Survival of the Fittest: Each player has one female citizen in the middle of the map where treasures spawn from time to time. The main bases are on isolated spots with no resources and some buildings are restricted. Enemy attack forces spawn regularly and attack your main base. The goal is to survive as long as possible by collecting treasures, recruiting troops and defending your base. (Map type: Random; Map Filter: Standard)

    Treasure Islands: Search treasures on small islands and on the water. Collect more treasures than your opponent to win. You can use fishing boats to garrison infantry and send them to other islands. Trade ships can be used to collect floating treasures, but you need to advance to Town Phase before they can be built. (Map type: Scenario; Map Filter: Naval Maps)

  • Screenshot showing the scenario Treasure Islands, which uses triggersScreenshot of the map Survival of the Fittest, which uses triggers

  • Mod Selector and Improved Mod Support: The new Mod Selector allows users to enable or disable mods, save them or just restart into them to test them out. This way, it is a lot easier to test and play mods. This can be reached at: Main Menu -> Tools & Options -> Mod Selection. Also, modders can now easily make small changes to the game without having to copy and modify many files.

Performance Improvements

Several parts of the game and the engine have been improved for better performance. Comparing with Alpha 16, you’ll notice significantly higher framerates at the beginning of the game. There are also some improvements observable later in the game, but also additional overhead from new features. Improvements have been made in these areas:

  • Simulation: Dynamic message subscriptions;
  • Rendering: Optimise silhouette rendering, new unit renderer, optimisation for non-animated units;
  • AI: Building placement code, handling of unreachable targets (i.e. for builder or gatherers), Defense — finding defending units;
  • Scripting: Using new Javascript Map objects at some places.

Graphics and User Interface

post-13528-0-68424300-1412955330 post-13528-0-88757800-1412955339

  • Improved Culling for Shadows and Reflections: This fixes ugly pop-in effects for shadows and reflections while scrolling.
  • Improved Water Rendering.
  • Improved CJK text input using the Windows IME.
  • Music: Omri has created a new and improved version of Honour Bound — the 0 A.D. main theme.
  • Miscellaneous: Hellenistic ranged siege animations added; Carthaginian ballista added; Iberian barracks replaced; Rotary mill added; Ptolemaic blacksmith modified; Gaul farmstead modified; Ptolemy I hero for the Ptolemies; Snow wolf modified; Iberian wonder added; New Iberian tower models added (see screenshots above).

Getting Support

Please see the “Get Support” page on our website to find ways to get help from the active and friendly 0 A.D. community.

We are well aware there is some room for improvement in 0 A.D. Some known issues are: Lag, visual glitches or textures not loaded, missing animations and more. When you provide feedback, we would ask you to focus on some of the other points that could be improved. Thanks.

Please Contribute!

We are seeking volunteer contributors in programming, art, sound, documentation and more. Programmers are especially welcome and can get started immediately.

Interested? Log onto #0ad-dev on QuakeNet on IRC and meet the developers. Also, you are invited to register on our forums and start participating!

Map Design Contest!

Do you want to try your hand at creating new maps? Especially now that triggers have been added? Then you get some extra motivation from the Council of Modders who are now hosting a map making contest. They do encourage you to make use of triggers and graphical mods as triggers and better mod support are important features in this release. The deadline is 30th November.

Why “Quercus”?

We name our releases according to development status (“Alpha” or “Beta”), successive release number (1, 2, 3, …) and a word relating to the ancient world, in alphabetical order (“Argonaut” for A, “Bellerophon” for B, …).

“Quercus” is Latin for “oak tree”. The name relates to 0 A.D. as it could refer to the oak leaves used in the corona civica, a military honor given to a citizen who saved the life of other citizens or soldiers whilst in battle. Recipients were allowed to enter the Roman Senate, and were required to wear them at public gatherings. (Thanks, Jonathan L.!) This name suits this version well because of the many bugfixes and optimizations in Alpha 17 that make the game stabler and more mature, like an old oak tree. Also, the increased support for mods allows the game to easily diverge into more varieties of gameplay, like branches growing from a tree trunk. (Thanks, ltms!).

For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter R. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!

Subscribe to 0 A.D. Development News

Contact info for press, bloggers, etc.: aviv@wildfireLATINgames.com without the capitalized name of a language spoken in ancient Rome.

CoM Hosts Map Making Contest

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

In celebration of the five year anniversary (It’s really been five years?! Time flies!) of 0 A.D. going open source the Council of Modders are hosting a map making contest! Please head over to the forum topic to read more about the rules and rewards, and to submit your maps of course ;)

Alpha 16 Patañjali OS X Bundle

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

The OS X bundle has finally been released. The bundle should work on Mountain Lion (10.8) or later. Users of an earlier version of OS X are advised to upgrade. Note that there is no 32-bit bundle anymore.

New Release: 0 A.D. Alpha 16 Patañjali

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, proudly announces the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 16 Patañjali”, the sixteenth alpha version of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. This alpha features localization into more than 10 different languages, an improved AI, a new GUI, big changes “under the hood” and more!

Easy Download and Install

Download and installation instructions are available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. 0 A.D. is free of charge and always will be. Although you might find some people selling copies of 0 A.D., either over the internet or on physical media, you will always have the option to download 0 A.D. completely gratis, directly from the developers.

dlbtn_top.png
dlbtn_win.png
dlbtn_linux.png
dlbtn_linux.png

Moreover, you can redistribute the game and modify it freely as long as you abide by the GPL. You can even use parts of the art and sound for your own projects as long as you abide by CC BY-SA. No “freemium” model, no in-game advertising, no catch.

Top New Gameplay Features in This Release

  • Localization:
    • 0 A.D. is now available by default in 13 different locales, contributed by volunteers from all over the world: Catalan, Czech, Dutch, English (United Kingdom), English (United States), French, Galician, German, Italian, Portuguese (Brazil), Portuguese (Portugal), Scottish Gaelic, and Spanish (Spain).
    • The Japanese translation is also completed, but due to the large font files, it would cause a larger download for other players and it also requires a computer with higher specs. So, we offer the Japanese translation together with the font files as a separately downloadable mod. See installation instructions for East Asian locales on our Wiki.
    • Many more languages are currently being worked on and are planned to be released in future alphas. You are welcome to contribute in this area.
  • Formation Updates: The Testudo formation (for Roman melee infantry) and the Syntagma formation (for Macedonian, Ptolemaic and Seleucid pikemen) have received new animations, and their movement has improved further over the previous version. The formations are also more moddable, which sets the stage for further developments in formations.
  • New AI – Petra: Petra features more aggressive expansion and combat and builds defence towers and fortresses as a human would. Petra manages resources better in late game than the previous AI, Aegis, and is more robust to external conditions. It will also trade over land with allied markets, if there are any.
  • Town Bell: Click on the new “town bell” button to sound an alarm and make your citizens garrison in the nearest structure until the enemy is gone. Once you sound the bell again, your units will ungarrison and go back to work.
  • Global Resource Trading Settings: You now set the chance a trader will trade a certain resource, rather than selecting it per trader. This gives you a better overview of your trade, and makes it easier to manage.
  • The “Wonder” Victory Condition: If you set “Wonder” as victory condition, a counter counting down 5 minutes appears after you build a wonder. If the enemy can’t destroy the wonder in this time, you win.
  • We also have an “Explored Map” game setting now, in which the entire map is covered with the Fog of War. This is an option that gives something between the “revealed map”, where there are no secrets, and the default “dark map”.

Graphics and User Interface

  • New GUI, new font: The new GUI style seen in the multiplayer lobby in Alpha 15 is now used nearly everywhere. The GUI font has also been changed to Biolinum, a free font created by the Libertine Open Fonts Project.
  • Multiplayer “Ready” button: In a multiplayer game, all users must confirm game settings before host can start game. When the host changes a setting, players are set to “not ready” again. This is to avoid sneaky behaviour amongst some hosts, who would change the settings right before starting.
  • New art assets: Animated flying hawks, Ptolemaic ships, Eurasian Wolf, Nile Crocodile, Ptolemaic buildings: Military settlement, Docks, Market, and quite a few new animations, e.g. a new seeding animation for farming units.

Music

  • New music track: “Water’s Edge” (click to listen). This beautiful track is assigned to the Britons and Gauls.

SpiderMonkey Upgrade & Other Development Updates

  • We have implemented a new version of the JavaScript engine “SpiderMonkey” in 0 A.D. It supports new features of JavaScript such as Map and Set objects. These two types, for example, have improved performance compared to normal objects when working with certain kinds of collections. Modders and developers who are used to working with the latest features of JavaScript are also happy about the new features which are now available.
  • SpiderMonkey also brings improved Javascript profiling and analysis features which allow for producing graphs. These features are another useful tool for performance measurements and for finding performance problems.
  • The version in Alpha 16 (v24) does not improve performance yet. But there will be improvements for the next version (v31) which should be included in Alpha 17.
  • Most importantly, the upgrade from v1.8.5 (which was released in March 2011) to v24 was quite a big step and a lot of work. Being on a current version means we avoid writing code for an old API that doesn’t exist any more and it saves us a lot of work compared to staying with v1.8.5 and upgrading years later.
  • Last but not least, it’s a “must have” from the security perspective, and it enables us to report bugs or even request new features from the SpiderMonkey developers.
  • This release contains many more changes and bugfixes not mentioned here. In terms of tickets closed on the project management and bug tracking system we use, Trac, this was another record.

Getting Support

Please see the “Get Support” page on our website to find ways to get help from the active and friendly 0 A.D. community.

We are well aware there is some room for improvement in 0 A.D. Some known issues are: Lag, visual glitches or textures not loaded, missing animations and more. When you provide feedback, we would ask you to focus on some of the other points that could be improved. Thanks.

Please Contribute!

We are seeking volunteer contributors in programming, art, sound, documentation and more. Programmers are especially welcome and can get started immediately.

Interested? Log onto #0ad-dev on QuakeNet on IRC and meet the developers. Also, you are invited to register on our forums and start participating!

Why “Patañjali”?

We name our releases according to development status (“Alpha” or “Beta”), successive release number (1, 2, 3, …) and a word relating to the ancient world, in alphabetical order (“Argonaut” for A, “Bellerophon” for B, …).

Patañjali was one of the three most famous Sanskrit grammarians of ancient India. In honor of languages everywhere, we have decided to dub Alpha 16 “Patañjali”.

For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter Q. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!

Subscribe to 0 A.D. Development News

Contact info for press, bloggers, etc.: aviv@wildfireSANSKRITgames.com without the capitalized name of a language spoken in ancient India.

0 A.D. Financial Report, April 2014

Friday, April 25th, 2014

In the interest of transparency, the Wildfire Games team would like to report on the finances of the project as of 2014-04-21.

0 A.D. has funds in three places: (1) Funds earmarked for the project and held in trust by US-based non-profit organization Software in the Public Interest, Inc. (hereafter “SPI”); (2) A private account in the US, under the name of former project leader, Jason Bishop (Wijitmaker). This account is a legacy of the time before we became affiliated with SPI; (3) Flattr, a Sweden-based microdonation provider.

SPI Earmark for 0 A.D.

As of 2014-04-21, the 0 A.D. earmark is USD 34,272.78.

We had intended to start using these funds to pay a programmer to develop 0 A.D., but unfortunately, he has parted ways with Wildfire Games several months ago, and we wish him all the best.

We are now planning to use the funds to pay other programmers, who may already be contributing to the project voluntarily, to work more intensively on core features and on improving the game’s performance, so that the game won’t lag so much.

Part of these funds are planned to go towards buying the perks we promised our donors. We will be distributing surveys to our donors shortly to make sure which perks they want. Then we will budget accordingly.

We know donors have been waiting for their perks for a long time. We sincerely apologize for the long delay in perk fulfillment.

Other Accounts & Total

In our “legacy” US bank account, we have USD 383.54.

On Flattr, we have EUR 430.82 available, which are approximately USD 595.13.

In total, we have USD 35,251.45 in all three accounts.

Concluding Remarks

A monthly report of funds held by SPI in trust for 0 A.D. is also available on the SPI website under “approved minutes of past meetings“. Currently, the latest report available on the SPI website is from November 30, 2013. We have obtained updated data from SPI through personal correspondence with its treasurer, Michael Schultheiss.

The 0 A.D. project finances are managed by the Treasury Committee: Erik (“feneur”), Adarash (“MishFTW”) and Aviv (“Jeru”). We welcome your comments on the forums.

New Release: 0 A.D. Alpha 15 Osiris

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, proudly announces the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 15 Osiris”, the fifteenth alpha version of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. This alpha features a multiplayer lobby, skirmish maps, auras and more!

Easy Download and Install

Download and installation instructions are available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. 0 A.D. is free of charge and always will be. Although you might find some people selling copies of 0 A.D., either over the internet or on physical media, you will always have the option to download 0 A.D. completely gratis, directly from the developers.




Moreover, you can redistribute the game and modify it freely as long as you abide by the GPL. You can even use parts of the art and sound for your own projects as long as you abide by CC BY-SA. No “freemium” model, no in-game advertising, no catch.

Top New Gameplay Features in This Release

    • Multiplayer Lobby: The new in-game multiplayer lobby is a place to meet other players and play games together. Meet the entire 0 A.D. community online and face the challenge of a multiplayer game!
    • Auras: Units get a bonus when they are in range of a special building, like a wonder, or another unit, such as a hero. This feature adds a new layer of strategy to the game. So far, in Alpha 15, temples regenerate health for nearby units, and most heroes have auras. This feature is set for expansion and further refinement over the next few alphas.
    • Debut of the Ptolemaic Egyptians: Alpha 15 debuts the Ptolemaic Egyptians as a new playable civilization. Some new buildings, units and unique gameplay features can already be tested, but it’s not finished yet and still contains a lot of placeholders. The Ptolemies will be completed in the next alpha releases.

A Ptolemaic Egyptian settlement along the Nile.

  • Skirmish Maps: Skirmish maps are a new game mode in 0 A.D. They’re similar to scenarios, but can be easily changed according to your preferences. Like scenarios, these are hand-crafted maps in which the terrain, starting positions and positions of resources on the map remain constant every game. However, unlike scenarios, other aspects can be changed every time you set up a game, like starting resources, factions and teams.Also, in skirmish maps the map creator also placed some generic entities on the map, which will change according to the factions players choose as soon as the game starts, such as generic Civil Centers that will immediately transform into Civil Centers specific to the faction chosen. Skirmish maps are another option available to the player, on top of scenarios and random maps. (Try the first skirmish map, “Alpine Valleys”, bundled with Alpha 15!)

 

The Alpine Valleys skirmish map.

User Interface

  • Escort / Guard Order: You can now order your troops to protect other units or buildings. When the guarded unit is attacked, whoever is guarding it will come to help, either by attacking the offender, or by healing or repairing the guarded unit.
  • Attack Notification: Whenever you’re attacked, you’ll hear a sound and receive a chat message, and the minimap will shows some blinking pixels on the map so you can quickly see where the attack is happening.
  • Auto-Garrison Units: When possible, you can ask your newly-produced units to garrison in the production building by setting the rally point in the building itself, using the Ctrl key.
  • Automatic Naval Pickup: When units are asked to garrison into a ship, the ship will sail to the shoreline to pick them up.
  • “Back to Work” Button: The last civilian task a unit was doing (i.e., gathering, building, trading, …) is remembered when ordering a unit to do some military task (i.e. attack, garrison, …). After you’re done defending yourself from an enemy attack, you can quickly send units back to their previous tasks using the back-to-work button.

     

New tech icons.

Music and Sound

  • Two special tracks have been composed for the Ptolemaic Egyptians: “Valley of the Nile” (feat. Shlomi Nogay on flutes and Jeff Willet on percussion) and “Ammon-Ra” (feat. Jeff Willet) (see YouTube videos below).
  • A new generic peace track, “Tavern in the Mist”, contributed by Mike Skalandunas.
  • “Celtica” and “Highland Mist” now feature an actual Celtic harp, played by Avital Rom.
  • “Eastern Dreams” and “Sands of Time” have been completely remade, and now feature Jeff Willet on percussion.
  • “Honor Bound” remixed and remastered.
  • New selection sounds.


Graphics

  • Better Unit Movement in Formations: The units in formations run around less, and now know how to get to the closest available place in the formation. This way, the formation is formed faster, and the pathfinder doesn’t have to compute long paths for big formations.
  • New Asian elephant and tiger animations.
  • Some new buildings were added to Brits and Gauls, complete with AO, normals and specularity.
  • New terrain textures.

Development Updates, Bug Fixes and Miscellaneous Features

The new GUI design, modelled by the new Multiplayer Lobby.

  • New GUI Design: Work on a new and improved user interface design has started a while ago. With Alpha 15 you can see it in action the first time! At the moment the new design is only used for the multiplayer lobby, but other menus will hopefully also benefit from the improvements in the future.
  • Internationalization Work Started: For the next Alpha we intend to include a translation system, and work on such a system has already begun. Volunteers have begun translating 0 A.D. into dozens of languages. If you have the necessary skills to help localize 0 A.D., feel free to head over to the web-based translation platform Transifex!
  • Multiplayer OOS Problems Fixed: Several causes of out-of-sync errors in multiplayer games have been fixed. These issues made multiplayer games with AI players nearly unplayable in Alpha 14 but should now be fixed.
  • Increased Support for Multiplayer Hosting: If you were unable to host multiplayer games before because you couldn’t manually setup port forwarding, now the game will try to automatically negotiate port forwarding with routers supporting UPnP. This should allow more people to host multiplayer games without connection issues.
  • Some recent graphical changes make it possible to make particle jet trails and more realistic smoke in the future.
  • Random map generation is now faster.

Getting Support

Please see the “Get Support” page on our website to find ways to get help from the active and friendly 0 A.D. community.

We are well aware there is some room for improvement in 0 A.D. Some known issues are: Lag, visual glitches or textures not loaded, missing animations and more. When you provide feedback, we would ask you to focus on some of the other points that could be improved. Thanks.

Please Contribute!

We are seeking volunteer contributors in programming, art, sound, documentation and more. Programmers are especially welcome and can get started immediately.

Interested? Log onto #0ad-dev on QuakeNet on IRC and meet the developers. Also, you are invited to register on our forums and start participating!

Why “Osiris”?

We name our releases according to development status (“Alpha” or “Beta”), successive release number (1, 2, 3, …) and a word relating to the ancient world, in alphabetical order (“Argonaut” for A, “Bellerophon” for B, …).

Osiris was an ancient Egyptian god, usually identified as the god of the afterlife, the underworld and the dead. In honor of the release of the Ptolemies, we have decided to dub Alpha 15 “Osiris”.

For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter P. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!

Subscribe to 0 A.D. Development News

Contact info for press, bloggers, etc.: aviv@wildfireNILEgames.com without the capitalized name of Egypt’s most important river.

Indiegogo Fundraiser Wrap-Up

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

Hey fans! Looks like we hit $33,251 in donations!

We’d like to extend our gratitude to everyone who donated and who worked hard to spread the word about our game and this fundraising campaign.

The sum we raised for this campaign dwarfs all of our past fundraisers combined. We are very happy to have raised this much, over 20% of our original goal of $160k, and we’ll be putting your donations to good use in the year ahead as we hire our programmer for a full 12 months of work.

The most popular perk was “Donator”, at 641 donors contributing $8679 in total. Donors at this level were promised a “Donator” badge on the Wildfire Games forums, appearance in a donor list we maintain on Twitter, and getting added to the list of “contributors” in the game.

This means that the most significant overall contribution came from people who weren’t interested in any physical perk at all!

Perk Fulfillment

In the coming weeks we’ll be working on fulfilling all of the perks. We’ll be contacting many of you via e-mail regarding some details (shirt sizes, etc.).

  • A reminder for those donors who are claiming the 0 A.D. Original Soundtrack: We will be offering the soundtrack in both super high quality FLAC format for download and the physical CD. If you would like just the FLAC digital download, please let us know when we contact you. This will help us save money on CDs and shipping and ensure more of your money goes toward developing the game instead.For those who opt for the physical CD, we know you won’t be disappointed. For everyone at this perk level (and above), our composer Omri Lahav is cooking up something special. Should be pretty fun. ;)

Posted Image

Delivery for most physical perks should be between the end of November and the end of December. Of course, we’ll continue to update everyone as fulfillment moves forward.

Thanks again to our 1274 donors, and we promise we’ll make you all proud.

If you missed the fundraiser and still want to donate, don’t worry, see our donation page for details how to contribute!

0 A.D. Development Report #13

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

Wildfire Games, the international group developing 0 A.D. – Empires Ascendant, is happy to present the 13th 0 A.D. development report covering everything (or nearly everything) that happened since the 12th report in June. Most of the items covered in the current report went into Alpha 14 Naukratis, so you should be able to see them in action right now!

First and foremost, Wildfire Games has launched a crowdfunding campaign via IndieGoGo, with the aim of raising $160,000 in 45 days. If successful, the funds from this campaign will go toward paying 2 team members to work on the game full-time (40+ hours per week) for up to 2 years! For our fans, that means more features faster and better performance quicker. Our stretch goals include another year of paid development so we can create an exciting single player campaign for the game! Click the logo below to check out our campaign!

Screenshots for this Report (New Features)

lobby-thumbanimals_by_Micket-thumbgallic-houses-thumbnew_stonehenge-thumbbrit_tower-thumbterrain_anchoring-thumb
(more…)

IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign, New Release: Alpha 14 Naukratis

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, is raising $160,000 to support development of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. The announcement of the fundraiser coincides with the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 14 Naukratis”, the fourteenth alpha version of 0 A.D.

Easy Download and Install

Download and installation instructions are available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. 0 A.D. is free of charge and always will be. Although you might find some people selling copies of 0 A.D., either over the internet or on physical media, you will always have the option to download 0 A.D. completely gratis, directly from the developers.

Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image

Moreover, you can redistribute the game and modify it freely as long as you abide by the GPL. You can even use parts of the art and sound for your own projects as long as you abide by CC BY-SA. No “freemium” model, no in-game advertising, no catch.

Please Contribute to the 0 A.D. Fundraiser!

We’ve been working on 0 A.D. as a free, open-source project for over 4 years now.

We have made tremendous progress over the years. All of this was accomplished almost for free, depending almost entirely on volunteer work.

0 A.D. will always be 100% free, open-source, and without any in-game ads. We have established ourselves as a one-of-a-kind project, combining strategy gaming, the love of ancient history and a commitment to openness and freedom.

Posted Image

But in order to complete the game soon, some of us will have to work on it as full-time contractors for the project.

To support speedier development of 0 A.D., please help us raise $160,000 over the next 45 days.

In exchange, you’ll get some of our amazing perks, such as soundtrack CDs, posters, and even your face on a unit in the game! This is a limited-time offer, so act soon.

Posted ImagePosted Image

For this fundraiser, your donations will be processed by one of the top crowdfunding websites, Indiegogo, and by the non-profit payments platform FirstGiving. Funds will be held for us by a US-based non-profit, Software in the Public Interest (SPI). SPI accepts donations and holds funds for many open source projects, including Debian, Drupal and LibreOffice, and also for 0 A.D.

Importantly, SPI is a tax-exempt public charity described under section 501c3 of the US Internal Revenue Code. This means that for many US taxpayers, some or all of your donation towards this fundraiser may be tax-deductible. For details, please consult your tax advisor.

If you enjoy playing 0 A.D. and believe that it matters, please help →

Why “Naukratis”? Announcing the Ptolemies, the Seleucids and “0 A.D. – Empires Ascendant”

We name our releases according to development status (“Alpha” or “Beta”), successive release number (1, 2, 3, …) and a word relating to the ancient world, in alphabetical order (“Argonaut” for A, “Bellerophon” for B, …).

Naukratis (alternate spelling: “Naucratis”) was a city in the Nile Delta of Lower Egypt, mainly inhabited by Greeks from the 6th century BC onwards. It also contained pottery that demonstrated the earliest known examples of the early Greek alphabet. Until the rise of Alexandria, Naukratis was the most important port city in Egypt. (Thanks, ImperiusDamian!)

We chose “Naukratis” in honor of the Ptolemaic Kingdom, which we are proud to announce will be the eleventh faction in 0 A.D. Another Hellenistic state set to be included in 0 A.D. is the Seleucid Empire, which ruled the Near East after Alexander’s empire fell apart. The Ptolemies and Seleucids are each set to be released in one of the next alphas, and they join the ten factions already portrayed in 0 A.D.: 3 Hellenic factions (Athens, Sparta, Macedonia), 2 Celtic factions (Britons and Gauls), Carthaginians, Iberians, Persians, Romans and Mauryan Indians.

For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter O. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!

The Ptolemies and the Seleucids probably conclude the set of factions we intend to make for the first edition of 0 A.D., covering the period between 500 B.C. and 1 B.C. We have decided to call this first edition “0 A.D. – Empires Ascendant”. In future editions of the game, we hope to represent notable civilizations from 1 A.D. to 500 A.D. The list will not be finalized until the first edition has gone gold, but some possible civilizations include Late Rome, Imperial Rome or Eastern Rome, the Germanics, Vandals, Sarmatians, Saxons, Parthians, Huns, Dacians, and the Goths.

Top New Gameplay Features in This Release

Now that we’ve got all the big announcements out of the way, let’s review what’s new in Alpha 14.

Posted Image

  • Blacksmiths: A brand new building type for the game, complete with models for all factions. Researches attack and armor upgrades.
  • Infinite farms: A farm will now keep yielding food until the end of the match, without need to rebuild it, but with diminishing returns. Only up to 5 gatherers can work on each farm. (Veteran players will notice that more space is now required to produce the same amount of food.)
  • Exponential armor and realistic health: Technologies now have the same effect on all units. Also, changes to the way units’ health is calculated in the game allowed us to correct some unrealistic phenomena, like archer damage to buildings.
  • Allies can now garrison in each other’s buildings.
  • Shared trade gain with allies: When you trade with an ally, there is a +25% bonus over trading with yourself, that is now split between you and your ally.
  • Ranged units can hit farther from high places.
  • Ranged units had to be within a minimum range from their targets to fire at them. This requirement has been removed.

Graphics, Sound and User Interface Improvements

  • Hero button: A persistent button in the top left appears when you train your one allowed hero(ine). Clicking it selects the hero(ine) wherever he or she is on the map.
  • Game speed controls: In single-player games, change the game’s speed whenever you want to.
  • Location hotkeys: You can now mark camera positions and jump back to them later with hotkeys.
  • GUI dropdowns support typing for quick selection.
  • Sound manager improvements: The game now plays a list of multiple songs per match, instead of playing just one song in a loop. Also, the user interface now responds to the user with sounds.
  • Terrain anchoring: Units now move more realistically on hills.
  • Saved games can now be given descriptions and deleted or overwritten in-game.
  • Several random maps were changed to be more beautiful and playable.
  • Fancy water rendering is now faster and improved.
  • Ships look better when sinking.

Posted Image

The Atlas Scenario Editor, Bug Fixes and Miscellaneous Features

  • Pike elevation tool in Atlas: Allows for making mountains and cliffs more easily.
  • Mod improvements: Saving maps in Atlas will no longer make it crash.
  • Fixed some common out-of-sync and out-of-memory errors.
  • Alert sounds no longer heard by all players, off-screen sounds only heard when appropriate.
  • Fixed crash with Nvidia Optimus graphics and some netbooks.
  • Walls can be placed along shores.
  • Improved hotkey support for non-QWERTY keyboards.
  • Several performance improvements.

Getting Support

Please see the “Get Support” page on our website to find ways to get help from the active and friendly 0 A.D. community.

We are well aware there is some room for improvement in 0 A.D. Some known issues are: Lag, visual glitches or textures not loaded, missing animations and more. When you provide feedback, we would ask you to focus on some of the other points that could be improved. Thanks.

Please Contribute!

We are seeking volunteer contributors in programming, art, sound, documentation and more. Programmers are especially welcome and can get started immediately.

Interested? Log onto #0ad-dev on QuakeNet on IRC and meet the developers. Also, you are invited to register on our forums and start participating!

Subscribe to 0 A.D. Development News

Contact info for press, bloggers, etc.: aviv@wildfireORACLEgames.com without the capitalized name of an ancient priest or priestess whom people would consult for advice or predictions of the future.

0 A.D. Financial Report, September 2013

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

In the interest of transparency, the Wildfire Games team would like to report on the finances of the project as of 2013-09-04.

0 A.D. has funds in three places: (1) Funds earmarked for the project and held in trust by US-based non-profit organization Software in the Public Interest, Inc. (hereafter “SPI”); (2) A private account in the US, under the name of former project leader, Jason Bishop (Wijitmaker). This account is a legacy of the time before we became affiliated with SPI; (3) Flattr, a Sweden-based microdonation provider.

SPI Earmark for 0 A.D.

As of 2013-07-10, 0 A.D. has an earmark of USD 5743.51. The bulk of that (USD 4,140) comes from funds raised in two Pledgie fundraising drives in 2010-2012, which were only partially used (Links to fundraisers: #1, #2). The rest of the sum comes from other small donations, collected without any fundraiser.

On 2013-08-09, the 0 A.D. treasury committee and an SPI board member approved an agreement with contractor Jorma Rebane (RedFox) that will cost a total of USD 3,310, or approximately 80% of the Pledgie funds.

Under the agreement, Jorma is set to perform the following duties:

  • To enhance the memory performance and allocation of the game, its GUI rendering and implementation, and add a new efficient and feature-rich text rendering module.
  • To overview implementation of code architecture and design decisions, while also consulting other developers.
  • To review patches submitted by other developers.
  • To assist the programming team in efficient task management.
  • To publicly report on his activities to the team and the fans no less than twice per week, with the intent of encouraging public interest in and engagement with the game, as well as inviting new contributions from the FOSS community.

You can follow up on Jorma’s contributions on the forums. Here is his activity status report for August 2013. So far he has made extremely large improvements to the game, that will be readily apparent in Alpha 15.

Other Accounts & Total

In our “legacy” US bank account, we have USD 130.05.

On Flattr, we have EUR 276.06 available, which are approximately USD 363.87.

In total, at the end of Jorma’s contract, and assuming no more revenue, we will have USD 2927.43. This sum would allow us to keep contracting out work at the current spending level for just 9 more weeks.

Concluding Remarks

A monthly report of funds held by SPI in trust for 0 A.D. is also available on the SPI website under “approved minutes of past meetings“.

The 0 A.D. project finances are managed by the Treasury Committee: Erik (“feneur”), Kieran (“k776″) and Aviv (“Jeru”). We welcome your comments on the forums.

Thanks to all our donors. Stay tuned for the release of 0 A.D. Alpha 14 and the announcement of our biggest fundraiser ever.