Squad-Servers.com Blog Feed en https://squad-servers.com/ Wed, 05 Aug 2020 23:02 CEST Squad-Servers.com is a Squad servers list. Its goal is to provide an efficient way for players to find a server that suits their needs and also for servers owners to get more players on their servers. 60 Beta 21 Released! https://squad-servers.com/blog/799/beta-21-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/799/beta-21-released/ Wed, 05 Aug 2020 23:02 CEST
We've got a piping hot, fresh update for you today with the release of Beta 21.

Many of you will likely know what to expect as we revealed our living roadmap a few weeks ago detailing some of the additions coming in B21, and while there have been some changes and adjustments there's still plenty here to get excited about.

Squad Leaders can rejoice as we've added new audio options so you can split the audio channels for Squad Leader/Commander Channel to your liking, though we're sure you'll still need to request for clear comms. We have also implemented sound dampening so that a Squad Leaders communication will overrule their squad members to help incentivize clear communications when using the same channel, this has also been implemented for the Commander channel so that other Squad Leaders will be dampened by the Commander while they are using the Command line. These changes only affect the Squad Leader/Commander communication channels, Local VOIP has been left as is. Please adjust these settings to your liking before you enter a server, as there is currently a known issue that will only apply these settings when you join a server, not while you are currently occupying a slot (we intend to have this fixed for B21.1)



Joining B21 we also have a selection of new toys for infantry roles and vehicles. The RUS Marksman Kit will be receiving a modern SVDM including a bipod and new scope, so make sure to give it to one of you who can aim, while over on the vehicular front, the RUS vehicle arsenal will be getting two variants of the Tigr Armored Car: An Open Top Turret with Kord HMG which carries 600 ammo and has 8 seats or the RWS also equipped with an HMG Turret, though this variant has 9 seats it only carries 300 ammo. These new armored cars are the RUS answer to fast armed transport for infantry Squads.

As this is quite a substantial release, please ensure that you clear your cached user data via the Options menu to avoid any potential issues, but be aware this will reset your settings and keybindings to the default, any custom changes will need to be reapplied.

With plenty of other changes and fixes, we'll be keeping an eye out for your feedback and any potential bug reports, read on to see the full changes.

Optimization / Stabilization
  • Improved and optimized VFX for surface bullet impacts (9mm to 14mm).
  • Optimized Texture memory of environment assets (phase 1)
  • Fixed a Client performance hitch that was related to asynchronous audio loading. Players with certain hardware would often experience a pronounced client side hitch (lag/delay) whenever a new sound would play in that match.
Gameplay Features
  • L / R Voip Channel Separation for Squad Leaders
  • This new feature gives the ability for a player to set an Option in the Settings → Audio Menu to split the Squad Leader VOIP Radio “Squad Leader / Command Channel” and “Squad Channel” to Left or Right audio channel.
  • The 3 Toggle Options for SL Command Channel and Squad Channel VOIP are:
  • Left Channel / Center Channel / Right Channel.
  • This feature does not affect Local Proximity VOIP.
VOIP Prioritization Dampening for Leadership
  • When the Squad Leader is using the Squad Radio VOIP channel (default G Key), any Squad member that is transmitting at the same time on this channel has their volume dampened automatically by 50% (variable configurable in settings).
  • The purpose for this sound dampening is so that the Squad Leader’s transmission is prioritized above all Squad members, which is intended to help the Squad Leader command his squad more effectively, ensuring the Squad Leader always has priority over squad members.
  • Likewise, when the Commander is using the SL Command VOIP Channel (default G Key), any Squad Leaders that may be transmitting at the same time on this channel will have their volume dampened automatically by 50%. This is to ensure the Commander has priority over SLs.
  • Leader VOIP Prioritization configuration is available in Settings -> Audio Menu.
  • This feature does not affect the volume of Local Proximity VOIP.
Infantry
  • Added a modern SVDM that includes a bipod and new scope to the RUS Marksman Kit.
  • Adjusted Infantry Movement Speed to be decreased slightly (roughly 2% decrease).
  • Adjusted the soldier physics asset/collision so it covers the entire groin/pelvic area - shots to this area should land more consistently.
  • Adjusted origin for all pistols to be a little more to the right side, making the pistol profile more prominent when not in ADS.
  • Adjusted CAF Kit Inventory: Medic (C8A3+Holo Site) and Auto Rifleman (Iron sight) now have binoculars.
  • Adjusted CAF C14 magazine rearm cost: Increased from 2 to 15 to be more in line with other kits.
  • Adjusted CAF C14 damage to be one 1 hit kill on most shots, including limb hits.
  • Adjusted GB Rifleman (L85 + SUSAT) frag grenade count from 2 to 1.
  • Fixed an issue with persistent ammo where Players will spawn with depleted ammo on their first spawn on a server. This occurs if a player was in the match during the map switch but did not spawn during the staging phase. Players will now always spawn with full ammo on their first-ever spawn on that match.
Vehicles
  • Added two variants of the Tigr Armored Car to the RUS vehicle arsenal: RWS with Kord HMG & Open Top Turret with Kord HMG. The Open Top Turret variant carries 600 ammo and has 8 seats. The RWS variant has 9 seats but carries only 300 ammo. These new armored cars are the RUS answer to fast armed transport for infantry Squads.
  • Added the RUS Kamaz5350 Truck to replace the Ural4350 for RUS Logistics & Transport Trucks. These new trucks help bring RUS into the modern era.
  • Added two variants of the CAF LAV3 RWS APC for CAF: LAV3 RWS with C6 and LAV3 RWS with M2. This Armored Personnel Carrier is intended to fill the role of light troop transport for CAF, while having some additional firepower in the 3rd seat with an open-top C6.
Deployables
  • Fixed players spawning on the roof of the Insurgent HAB.
  • Adjusted both the height & angle of the deployable Sandbag firing windows to have increased visibility/firing lines, especially with bipod weapons.
User Interface
  • Fixed an issue with the radial menu when a player would Left click and then become stuck while opening and closing the radial menu.
Environments
  • Adjusted visibility of underwater post-processing volume - players will no longer be able to see far ahead while underwater.
  • Adjusted player collision on Norwayspruce_Large02.
  • Improved the accuracy of the collisions on all Populus Euphratica trees.
  • Fixed missing collisions on multiple ME Prefabs of the rooftop Water Container.
  • Fixed incorrect LOD material and pushed out Proxy LOD on Market Buildings.
  • Fixed some missing faces on the static Hiace van/minibus.
  • Fixed DF resolution of middle eastern drapes
  • Fixed player collision on ME_UrbRes_Bld_Lg_02 which allowed players to slightly clip thru walls.
Misc Fixes
  • Fixed an exploit that allowed a Player that got kicked from a squad while incapacitated to keep that kit instead of being given the Recruit kit.
  • Fixed an issue with EAC kicking players on certain servers unintentionally.
Modding
  • Added a Gameplay Layer Validator Tool. This is a modular plug-and-play scripting framework that modders can use to quickly check over their gameplay layers to see if there are any potential errors. Updated the description of old GameplayLayerChecks blueprint to make clear it is deprecated.
Maps

Al Basrah
  • Fixed floating foliage in the out of bounds surrounding landscape.
  • Al Basrah Invasion v2 - Fixed GB Helicopter pad being partially outside map boundary.

Chora
  • Fixed missing wood material of the grand temple.
  • Adjusted spline segments to avoid aggressive deformation of mud walls.
  • Adjusted LODs on loam wall set to use custom screen size and reduction, to prevent distortion when used on splines.

Fool's Road
  • Fixed materials on pieces of the underground tunnel, including cables, pipes and chain link fence.
  • Fixed a road edge above the terrain in grid F3-9-7.
  • Fixed floating roads in grids E2-7-7, E2-5-9, F2-4-1, C5-6-6, B3-3-4, A5-6-4, D5-7-2.
  • Fixed a floating shed at grid B2-5-2.
  • Fixed floating rocks at grid B6-7-4 & A2-2-6.
  • Fixed a concrete floor that had stretched / blurry texture at Fortress POI.
  • Fixed a floating tree, tree trunk, and boulder in grid D4-9-3.
  • Fixed a bunker that had a high floor that Required jumping to enter at grid B1-1-1.

Gorodok
  • CAF Gorodok RAAS v1 - Fixed incorrect Collisions on Helipads, Protection Zones and Capture Zones.

Lashkar Valley
  • Optimized the Tamarix shrub types, reducing from 5 types to 1 for performance.
  • Fixed the harsh brightness transition on scoped weapons on certain Lashkar lighting layers by adjusting vignette settings.
  • Fixed a missing end post on a wall grid F5-5-2.
  • Removed a bugged burnt shipping container from grid K11-8-6.
  • Removed the mysterious spherical invisible object from the sky above the Vineyard POI.
  • Lashkar Valley RAAS v1 - Fixed incorrect Collisions on Helipads, Protection Zones and Capture Zones.

Mestia
  • Added blocking volume to prevent players from glitching through the tunnel roof.

Manic-5 (CAF)
  • Fixed the deepwater damage volume not working
  • Fixed the damage volume that prevents players from sliding down the side of the dam.
  • Fixed a few floating objects.

Mutaha
  • Fixed floating road at grid E7-5-8.
  • Fixed a missing post on a wall.
  • Fixed various floating barricades.
  • Fixed an urban building that had a bugged staircase leading to nowhere.

Nanisivik (CAF)
  • CAF Nanisivik Invasion v1 - Fixed incorrect Collisions on Helipads, Protection Zones and Capture Zones.

Narva
  • Fixed materials on sidewalks at US Main that was causing Z-fighting (flickering textures).
  • Fixed certain Bus Stops having flickering glass in grid F4-2-4.
  • Fixed the water damage volume not being aligned to the waterline.
  • Adjusted the collision on the Train Depot staircase to be more accurate.

Skorpo
  • Fixed the water damage volume not being aligned to the waterline.
  • Fixed Silo door trapping players at grid R14-5-9.
  • Fixed floating ammo boxes at grid R13-1-8.

Yehorivka
  • Fixed the floating grass in various locations around Yehorivka.

Known Issues
  • An option in Audio Settings Menu was added in B21 for Audio Hardware selection for Input and Output. This option is currently not working 100% correctly and is still a work in progress. In a future update, you will be able to change your input and output device within Squad, in the Audio Settings. This will be very helpful when troubleshooting headset issues in Squad.
  • Occasional Player (Client) crashes in various circumstances. Detailed crash reports help us fix things faster, and we truly appreciate those that have filled out and sent in crash reports.
  • Player (Client) occasional crash at the end of a round, upon map switch, due to a UE4 Particle Crash bug upon seamless map travel. Actively pursuing a fix for this crash.
  • Commander – When the commander changes to the UAV camera, he cannot hear local audio anymore, even though he still sees local audio transmissions in the bottom left corner. Others can still hear him when he talks. Additionally, when leaving the UAV camera, he hears all of the local audio broadcasts at the same time, originating from the point where they were initially transmitted from – even if the person doing the transmission has moved afterward. Will be addressed in a future update.
  • Helicopters have various handling and Client/Server hitch issues and small bugs that are being actively developed and will be addressed in future updates.
  • Vehicle Reset Feature does not currently work with Helicopters.
  • Vehicle Reset Feature can freeze a vehicle in the air if used too close to a tree.
  • Occasionally a player does not spawn at a Rally Point. This often happens when numerous players are spawning in at the same time — This will be addressed in a future update.
  • Server performance may periodically dip when a server has a high population and high load. We are continuously working to improve server performance and optimization.
  • ATGM projectiles desync for other players that are not the gunner, however, what the gunner sees should be the actual synced projectile. This is an inherent problem, and the solution is currently in long term development.
  • Vehicles parking brake gets stuck “On” if a player exits the vehicle while holding the parking brake (Default Spacebar). When encountering a vehicle that appears healthy but is not able to move, try hitting Spacebar to turn the parking brake “Off’ — This will be addressed in a future update.
  • “Alt-tabbing” out of Squad during a loading screen freezes the client. The recommended solution, for now, is to run Squad in the “Borderless” mode. This can be changed in Settings -> Graphics.
  • Ammo rack component (on IFVs and Tanks) takes a very long time to repair. — This will be addressed in a future update.
  • Audio module for Squad is initialized at the game start. If a Player does not have a microphone plugged in at launch, or accidentally unplug their microphone and then plug it back in, Squad needs to be restarted to get the microphone to work again — This will be addressed in a future update.
  • SFX bug while Firing in full auto. If the player presses the fire button for a short period, the sound effect gives the impression that you fired more rounds then you did — This will be addressed in a future update.
  • Localization for most language translations is currently out of date. We plan to push a full localization pass in a future release as we lock down the text that needs to be translated for the game.
  • The new L/R audio options will not apply correctly if changed while the player is within a server, the player will need to apply these settings beforehand or disconnect and rejoin if they are already in a server. We intend to have this fixed in B21.1
Local/Offline Issues & Bugs (these currently have a lower priority):
  • Local/Offline Bug with Commander – Insurgent / Militia Handheld Drone does not move in local. Local/Offline issues currently have a lower priority.
  • Local/Offline Bug with Commander – UAV hovers in one position instead of moving along the flight path in local.
  • Local/Offline Bug with Commander – CAS does not do damage in local.
  • Local/Offline Bug with Vehicles: When playing offline on Jensen’s Range, Tracks, Wheels, and other components are not destructible while on the Jensen’s Range in Local play.
  • Local/Offline Bug with Weapon damages: When playing offline on Jensen’s Range, Weapon damages with both Infantry and Vehicle weapons are not accurately replicated.
  • Local/Offline Bug with Scoped Emplacements: When playing offline on Jensen’s Range, if a player exits an Emplacement while looking through the scope, the Scope remains on the Player’s HUD until they get back in the Emplacement and then Scope out.
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Beta 21 Released! https://squad-servers.com/blog/798/beta-21-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/798/beta-21-released/ Wed, 05 Aug 2020 23:02 CEST here.]]> The Wrench - July 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/796/the-wrench-july-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/796/the-wrench-july-2020/ Wed, 29 Jul 2020 22:57 CEST here.]]> The Wrench - July 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/797/the-wrench-july-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/797/the-wrench-july-2020/ Wed, 29 Jul 2020 22:50 CEST
Welcome to another edition of The Wrench, your monthly dose of information delving into some of the hottest mods that are being worked on for Squad by the modding community. Considering that the modding SDK had some troubles with a shadercore crash that was preventing a lot of modding potential, it’s great to see such fantastic contributions already coming through and being worked on.

Take a read and if you’re interested be sure to follow up with them in their community areas so you can give them your feedback or co-ordinate a time to really put these mods through their paces.

First up we have a map from BaronVonBoyce, one of the modders who worked on the CAF DLC, and now part of Redstone Interactive working on Beyond The Wire, who in his spare time has whipped up this scenic map - be sure to check out the stunning trailer as well!

Panjwai - BaronVonBoyce



The Panjwai District is located southwest of Kandahar City in the Kandahar Province of Afghanistan. In the early 2000s, this area saw heavy fighting between Canadian, American, British, and Dutch forces against Taliban insurgents in pitched battles and ambushes.

In-game, Panjwai will be a 4km x 4km map created with the goal of giving unconventional factions a fighting chance against conventional factions. It will feature two lush and dense river valleys separated by a more arid high ground.



The river valleys will feature interconnected networks of canals, mud-walled vineyards, and compounds with lots of cover, concealment, avenues of approach, and a wide variety of possible capture points.

The more arid high ground of the map will contain a large double-highway that stretches from one end of the map to the other, mountain villages, underground tunnels, and complexes that the unconventional forces can use as strongholds or to move quickly and safely around the more open areas of the map.



Check out the workshop page to add it to your collection today


Next up, we have a map that many should be familiar with across different time periods, as it is one of the most popular and well-known maps from the Battlefield franchise, Wake Island, though Gunslinger and OC2901 have brought it into the modern age, read on to find out more or visit their workshop page here.

Wake Island - Gunslinger & OC2901



Ladies and Gentleman,

After a lot of testing, we finally released Wake Island Map for Squad. We will apply for Whitelisting and inform you if the Map gets Whitelisted. If we’re extremely lucky or talented we will get drivable RHIB Boats on it someday.

Info about the Map:

This is Wake Island, this is not Battlefield! We aimed to make a replica of Wake Island as it is used by the US Armed Forces today! Wake Island Serves as an Airfield in the Middle of the Pacific Ocean and as one of several THAAD Sites to Protect the United States against Ballistic Missiles.

The Map is 8x8km but features a lot of Water and Carrier Spawns for Helicopters.

Gameplay Wise this map is kind of a Meatgrinder with options. If you just use Ground Forces it will come to Meatgrind Points, if you use your 3 Helicopters strategically you can avoid that.

Info about the last Updates:

The latest updates have been mainly performance improvements, this map should run now even on low tier machines with decent framerates!

Following Gameplay Layers are Included as of submission:
- Wake_Island_AASv1 (Day)
- Wake_Island_AASv2 (Dusk)
- Wake_Island_Invasion_v1 (Night)
- Wake_Island_Skirmish_v2 (Harbour)
- Wake_Island_Skirmish_v3 (Village)
- Wake_Island_TC_v1 (Airfield)
- Wake_Island_TC_v2 (Village & Hotel)

Be sure to feedback to the modding crew on their Community Discord Server over here: https://discord.gg/8nhURxU

French Foreign Legion Mod - Tactical Collective Modding



This week we've welcomed some new members to the team, finalised some textures, and got started on the animations for the FRF2. More information can be found in our latest WIP, update #22 here[mod.squadfrance.fr]


The Bundeswehr Mod Team are back with a huge update to share with you all, make sure to check out their full progress report on their site here [bwmod.com], as well as to see if you could help them by joining their modding team, or perhaps, consider joining their Discord server to give them your feedback: https://discord.gg/TwBGeGx

Bundeswehr Mod Massive Progress Update - Bundeswehr Mod Team

Dear SQUAD Community,

wow. Just WOW. Our team used the last 6 months very well! This month, we proudly present our progress in weapons, characters, vehicles, and FOB assets. Our new German faction is well on its way and we are working on nearly all items of our development list by now, which is awesome in my books – we are on track and our goal to release at Q3 of 2020 seems legitimate.

FOB Assets

First I want to present to you our new and specific German FOB assets and props. We are aiming towards a clear distinction of our FOB stuff to what is there with the current vanilla game. Apart from using correct tactical signs, you might spot one or the other German flag on our gear.





Poliack finished his 120 mm Tampella mortar for the Bundeswehr faction. He added a crazy detailed mortar dial-optic and proper textures. Brace for impact!





As you can see, the MILAN anti-tank wire-guided missile is a common project of the BW-Mod Team and the French Foreign Legion Team. HEx reworked Anastasias base model, added new tripods, and added new textures to everything. Since there are no IR / thermal optics in SQUAD, we removed these specific parts. We hope to continue our cooperation with the FFL Team and you can be excited for more to come from it soon.

Character Models

Our boi HolyLordJesus began his work with our character models and their IDZ Flecktarn uniforms. Of course, it is a WIP, but we felt like showing it to you with this update. Especially the snow Flecktarn character will be changed a lot since our military advisors gave us valuable feedback for it. Anyways – an awesome job from HolyLordJesus so far!




Weapons Update

Another awesome update regards your tools for getting the job done as a gamer: Weapons. This time around we are getting into weapons, which are mostly used by specialized soldiers, like the engineer (AT-Mine DM31AT), the crewman (H&K MP7), the marksman (H&K G28) and the German sniper rifle (G22).





Cpt.Brotzeit modeled the AT-Mine completely, so you will see the correct arming process, once animations are done for it! Again, thx to HEx for his modeling and texturing skills with the DM25 smoke grenade and the H&K MP7 (yes, it got the 40 round mag).



Kirusha shows us his modeling progress with the German sniper rifle G22 as a so-called whitemodel. You might remember kirusha as the creator of the CAF sniper rifle and you would be right to do so. Thanks for your art kirusha_love!



And of course our .:Jinjer, with his brand new H&K G28 in tan – the main DMR of the Bundeswehr. It is… just perfect. Also, thank´s to .:Jinjer for his work – keep it up, buddy!

Vehicles

Also, a massive update with our faction vehicles awaits you: We present 3 vehicles today!



If you follow our posts at our discord, you already know about HolyLordJesus update for the finished transport / loggy truck HANS 5T GL. He showcases here our “four seasons/biomes” camo patterns for the Bundeswehr vehicles: Borreal Forest, African Savanna, Polar Winter and Desert. All vehicles will be dressed accordingly once finished!



Our [FWF] Toby delivered the first finished whitemodel of the German Dingo 2 MRAP. Looks great, doesn´t it? Weapons are coming soon. Keep it up Toby, we are all hyped!




Petr005 managed to finish the GTK Boxer with its FLW200 weapons station and presents an extremely detailed whitemodel for it as well. Textures are already in the works and should be presentable in a month or two. As a Jäger and Panzergrenadier veteran, I am very pleased with what you did here Petr005. I guess everybody is already itching for your upcoming PUMA model.


Another Wrench regular, wunda, has dropped in to let you all know about the progress they’ve made on Harju since we last saw it. wunda has even gone to the trouble of including an extensive overview of the changes to the map and what you can expect if you haven’t played on Harju before. Go get it!

If you’d like to give it a whirl, head over to Harju’s workshop page here

Harju B20 Update - wunda

[youtube v="6AgFNPvxIx4"]


The first major content update to Harju is released. Featuring a complete rework of its foliage and lighting, combat in Harjus's new thick forests will test even the best Squads. 12 new capture zones, 12 new layers, and updates to old locations serve to fill in the previously sparsely populated western half of the map. Harju is updated, whitelisted and ready to played on B20.


Part of our previous Wrench post, SPECTR_Eternal is back with some new changes to Operation_Downpour and some big news as it’ll be packaged as part of the Athena mod soon. Why not give it a gander over here: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1821482386

Operation_Downpour To Be Featured In Athena Mod - SPECTR_Eternal



OP_Downpour is getting more development time, and more projects start to get interested.

This time around, Athena Mod expressed their wish to collaborate, so OP_Downpour can be expected to hit the Workshop not only on its own but also inside the Athena Mod package.

There might be yet another collaboration event tied to Athena, and it just might include some spicy Armored Vehicles, Right? But it's a little too early to tease.




We’ll be finishing off this Wrench with another entrant from last month, though this time, the [SAM] Clan is back not with a map, but a new events mode mod to help take things to a new hardcore level of play, read on to know more and make sure to check out their site and community Discord to get more information.
Their Discord : https://discord.gg/gHaJkTJ
Their Official Website : https://www.ArabicSquad.com/

Hardcore Events Mode - [SAM] Clan



Who said we only worked on the Gaza mod?

We have also been developing our events mod, remember Al Basrah night? Yeeeeeeeah we are back with two variants of Yehorivka night, one for Tallil Outskirts and Kokan, where we added the following:

- Head, side, back, interior lights, police lights and the seal team trident on the M-ATV
- Multiple lights on the black hawk (UH-60M)
- Also, we took the sights off the Rpg and all 4x scopes from the US, RUS, GB
- All the US, RUS weapons have tracer rounds
- You can only see your squad on the map while blueberries are not visible to the player on the map to stick to our hardcore mode

We are also working on night variants for all the maps. And how could we forget about the Gaza mod ;)!

In the upcoming Wrenches you will see big developments thanks to the anticipated updates mentioned on the roadmap. So stay tuned guys for the next Wrench, until then you can join our discord for more mod updates: https://discord.gg/gHaJkTJ .. be safe and stay away from Corona ^_^

That’s the Wrench for the month of July, and I’m sure there’s something there that will tickle your fancy. If so, be sure to let the creators know what you enjoy the most about their work on their workshop pages or in their community Discord servers as feedback is one of the most crucial aspects of creativity.

If you are a modder yourselves, or part of a modding community and have a Squad mod that you’d like to see featured here on The Wrench, follow this link to submit details so we can take a look at the fantastic effort you’ve been putting into some of your creations.

Have fun everybody and stay safe.

Offworld Out!]]>
Game Designer Letter from Fuzzhead - 24th July 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/795/game-designer-letter-from-fuzzhead-24th-july-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/795/game-designer-letter-from-fuzzhead-24th-july-2020/ Fri, 24 Jul 2020 23:48 CEST
We hope you have enjoyed all the content releases this week, with the new roadmap[joinsquad.com] and our first SquadChat in a while explaining the future of Squad. We're not done yet though, oh no! You've had some time with B20 now, and we have a survey[forms.gle] we'd like you to fill out to help us understand the aspects you've been enjoying (or not so much) since it released.

We also have quite the extensive Design Letter from Fuzzhead[joinsquad.com] for you all to pour over on our website, so get comfortable in your favorite reading chair, stoke the fire and get reading.

Have a great weekend everybody.
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Game Designer Letter from Fuzzhead - 24th July 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/794/game-designer-letter-from-fuzzhead-24th-july-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/794/game-designer-letter-from-fuzzhead-24th-july-2020/ Fri, 24 Jul 2020 23:48 CEST here.]]> Roadmap Roll Out! https://squad-servers.com/blog/793/roadmap-roll-out/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/793/roadmap-roll-out/ Wed, 22 Jul 2020 01:38 CEST
A fresh logi run has brought the necessary supplies for another offensive and a fresh batch of new information showcasing our plans for Squad moving forward. A couple of weeks ago, some of you may have seen an image floating around of a roadmap that the team here at OWI were working on which detailed the milestones we intend to accomplish by the end of 2020.

While we didn't intend for this image to be public at that moment, this did offer us an opportunity to hear from you and understand what you expected to see from an updated roadmap. After listening to your feedback, we went back to our internal production timeline and combed through all we have mapped out for the next six months.

Our initial pass of the roadmap didn't expand upon core elements that many felt needed to be highlighted. These included crucial system changes, gameplay additions, tweaks and fixes, and our plans for further content to bring into Squad through 2020 and beyond. Many are changes that were discussed in the past. As the Squad team gears up for bringing Squad out of early access, and the end of the year signifying the 5th year of Squad development, we're sharing with you today the next round of our living roadmap.[joinsquad.com]
You should notice that we've set up the living roadmap to display a monthly lineup. Within each month, we've expanded the changes to include what we expect to be hitting in those updates. Hopefully, there's something there that tickles the fancy of many Squad players.

That's not all, though. Yes, we've expanded the image and given a bit more detail into each of the months. Still, something tells us that it wouldn't be enough to satisfy some of the most hardcore players. For those who want to know more details of each new update, we will be providing a Trello Board[trello.com] that will break down these changes, tweaks, and features.

We will strive to keep this living roadmap image[joinsquad.com] and Trello board[trello.com] updated regularly. However, expect changes often, as this is a “living” document: features, content, and items will regularly be moved based on the current development status. We want to be transparent in the development process, with quicker information and more details if and when plans change. Keep an eye on our social channels for further info when that happens so you can always be kept up to date.

Twitter
Facebook[www.facebook.com]
Instagram[www.instagram.com]

Also, we would love for you to join us for a SquadChat live stream[www.twitch.tv] this Thursday 24th July at 11 am PDT where we will be sitting down with our Producer Arnaud and Game Designer and Project Lead, Tom 'fuzzhead' Fancsy as we discuss the recent Beta releases, our new roadmap and more. Be sure to join us then.

Until next time squaddies.

Offworld Out!

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Roadmap Roll Out! https://squad-servers.com/blog/792/roadmap-roll-out/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/792/roadmap-roll-out/ Wed, 22 Jul 2020 01:38 CEST here.]]> Roadmap Roll Out! https://squad-servers.com/blog/791/roadmap-roll-out/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/791/roadmap-roll-out/ Wed, 22 Jul 2020 01:07 CEST
A fresh logi run has brought the necessary supplies for another offensive and a fresh batch of new information showcasing our plans for Squad moving forward. A couple of weeks ago, some of you may have seen an image floating around of a roadmap that the team here at OWI were working on which detailed the milestones we intend to accomplish by the end of 2020.

While we didn't intend for this image to be public at that moment, this did offer us an opportunity to hear from you and understand what you expected to see from an updated roadmap. After listening to your feedback, we went back to our internal production timeline and combed through all we have mapped out for the next six months.

Our initial pass of the roadmap didn't expand upon core elements that many felt needed to be highlighted. These included crucial system changes, gameplay additions, tweaks and fixes, and our plans for further content to bring into Squad through 2020 and beyond. Many are changes that were discussed in the past. As the Squad team gears up for bringing Squad out of early access, and the end of the year signifying the 5th year of Squad development, we're sharing with you today the next round of our living roadmap.[joinsquad.com]
You should notice that we've set up the living roadmap to display a monthly lineup. Within each month, we've expanded the changes to include what we expect to be hitting in those updates. Hopefully, there's something there that tickles the fancy of many Squad players.

That's not all, though. Yes, we've expanded the image and given a bit more detail into each of the months. Still, something tells us that it wouldn't be enough to satisfy some of the most hardcore players. For those who want to know more details of each new update, we will be providing a Trello Board[trello.com] that will break down these changes, tweaks, and features.

We will strive to keep this living roadmap image[joinsquad.com] and Trello board[trello.com] updated regularly. However, expect changes often, as this is a “living” document: features, content, and items will regularly be moved based on the current development status. We want to be transparent in the development process, with quicker information and more details if and when plans change. Keep an eye on our social channels for further info when that happens so you can always be kept up to date.

Twitter
Facebook[www.facebook.com]
Instagram[www.instagram.com]

Also, we would love for you to join us for a SquadChat live stream[www.twitch.tv] this Thursday 24th July at 11 am PDT where we will be sitting down with our Producer Arnaud and Game Designer and Project Lead, Tom 'fuzzhead' Fancsy as we discuss the recent Beta releases, our new roadmap and more. Be sure to join us then.

Until next time squaddies.

Offworld Out!

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Roadmap Roll Out! https://squad-servers.com/blog/790/roadmap-roll-out/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/790/roadmap-roll-out/ Wed, 22 Jul 2020 01:07 CEST here.]]> Beta 20.2 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/789/beta-202-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/789/beta-202-released/ Thu, 16 Jul 2020 02:31 CEST here.]]> Beta 20.2 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/788/beta-202-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/788/beta-202-released/ Thu, 16 Jul 2020 01:35 CEST
OWI-HQ here with another minor update in the form of B-20.2 which is rolling out with a number of map layer fixes to combat some bugs and also some layer balance changes across some maps to provide fairer matches. Thank you to all those that have provided bug reports!

As always, do let us know through our helpdesk[offworldindustries.zendesk.com] if you are experiencing any technical issues so we can address them as quickly as possible, and be sure to have yourselves a great day.


Beta 20.2 Release Notes

Map Layer Fixes
  • Al Basrah - Adjusted Infantry and Vehicles taking damage too quickly when submerged in water, and in some cases taking damage when submerged in only ankle-high water.
  • Lashkar Valley Invasion v1 - Fixed Fog of war not being enabled.
  • Gorodok AAS v2 - Fixed GB main having no repair stations or ammocrates.
  • Lashkar Valley RAAS v1 - Update Vehicle Layout to be more balanced, adding BMP2 to RUS.
  • Sumari Invasion v1 - Added a tweak to CP capture ticket gain, less tickets are gained upon capture for this Invasion layer to give the defending team a more fair fight.
  • Lashkar Valley AAS v1 - Fixed Ghawchak CP having an offset CP name.
  • Skorpo RAAS v2 - Fixed USA not having helicopters.
  • Lashkar Valley Skirmish v1 - Fixed CP's not being set correctly (should be 90s capture, minimum of 2 players to capture).
  • CAF Lashkar Valley Invasion v1 - Fixed INS Protection Zones not being positioned correctly.
  • CAF Lashkar Valley RAAS v1 - Fixed certain CP’s which were not allowing players to deploy ammo bags/mines or use the lean function.
  • CAF Gorodok Invasion v1 - Fixed CAF team having no logistics trucks.
  • CAF Gorodok RAAS v1 - Fixed CAF team having no logistics trucks.
  • CAF Nanisivik Invasion v1 - Fixed defenders incorrect staging phase text.
  • CAF Belaya RAAS v2 - Fixed CAF main base helipad not working correctly.

Environment Fixes
  • Updated missing physmats and collision on the industrial office L-shape building to prevent placing deployables inside unenterable walls.
  • Improved aesthetics of the windows on European office buildings.
  • Updated the railbridge collision so players can now fall through the gaps again.
  • Updated Skorpo to fix holes in the terrain and decreased underwater visibility.
  • Updated Manic-5 to replace middle eastern pavement with eastern european pavement.
  • Updated Nanisivik surrounding terrain mesh to not be inside the playable area, and fixed a floating fire effect.
  • Updated the Material Elements on Sandbag assets to improve visual quality.
  • Updated the deployable sandbag wall with hole, so the hole better aligns with the new player eye height.
  • Fixed a terrain hole issue on Fools Road by adding statics next to a house to prevent players from falling through the world.
  • Fixed buildings and walls on Sumari that were using incorrect statics and looked broken.
  • Fixed trigger sound for dog barking on Yeho.

Misc Fixes
  • Added a Gameplay Layer Validator tool. This tool can be accessed by modders.
  • Fixed prone movement backwards+diagonally not making any sounds.
  • Fixed Client Log Spam related to localization.
  • Fixed FOB radio attenuation differences on LOW vs EPIC settings.
  • Fixed a UI issue where the SL Radial Menu would lock up the mouse. Please note that this UI issue is still present on the F (Enter vehicle) menu, this will be addressed in a future update.

Offworld Out!
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Beta 20.2 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/787/beta-202-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/787/beta-202-released/ Thu, 16 Jul 2020 01:35 CEST here.]]> Beta 20.1 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/786/beta-201-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/786/beta-201-released/ Wed, 08 Jul 2020 20:03 CEST
We all hope you’ve been enjoying Beta 20 since we released it last week, and have had plenty of time to get familiar with Lashkar Valley and all the other new goodies.

Today we’re releasing a patch that contains several fixes for Squad, the most notable of them being a fix for the shadercore crash that was prevalent for modders trying to use the Squad Development Kit. We want to offer a massive thanks to our modding community who have been very patient as we investigated and resolved this crash. We can’t wait to see what you may have been concocting while we fixed this issue.

Now, onto the changes:
  • Fixed a shadercore client crash in the SDK when trying to load a custom mod map.
  • Fixed a client crash when loading CAF assets.
  • Fixed multiple mesh and static issues on Manic.
  • Fixed a server crash related to mortar projectiles.
  • Fixed a client crash that sometimes happened after joining a team and creating a squad.
That’s all for today, we’ll see you out there on the battlefield.

Offworld Out.
]]>
Beta 20.1 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/785/beta-201-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/785/beta-201-released/ Wed, 08 Jul 2020 20:03 CEST here.]]> Beta 20 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/784/beta-20-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/784/beta-20-released/ Mon, 29 Jun 2020 23:32 CEST
B-20 is rolling out with optimizations and fixes for servers, audio, game crashes, and more. Not only that but joining Beta 20 will be a new map, Lashkar Valley.



Some of you may be familiar with this map from PR days, now with some added love and a few tweaks. This version of Lashkar Valley was developed with Midnight Interactive, the makers of the Aussie mod and while the Aussie faction isn’t joining Squad in this release, there is still room for them yet ;)

Based in Afghanistan, featuring a forked river valley with numerous village compounds and fertile agricultural land. The rugged mountain terrain offers routes to bypass the river valley, with plenty of ambush points and overlooks.

Our map optimization team has also targeted Belaya, Skorpo and Al Basrah this release, so these maps should perform better, which has enabled us to add Helicopters to several of the layers for these maps.

Also in Beta 20, we've got some changes to the infantry gameplay, "Fuzzhead" is here with a rundown for you all:

"The auto rearm of bandages on all non-medic kits upon spawning at a Rallypoint or HAB has been lowered from 2 to 1. This change to the persistent ammo system will especially affect the viability of continuous assaults from Rallypoints and FOB’s that are cut off from the team’s ammo resupply chain. The intention with this gameplay change is to help incentivize teams that coordinate and use their logistics chains effectively, and to disincentivize team’s from repeatedly attacking exclusively from Rallypoints, without coordinating with other support elements of the team such as Helicopters, Armored Vehicles, and Forward Outposts.

We also updated the 1st person camera perspective of infantry to more closely match the actual 3rd person eye height of the character. Prior to B20 the camera height was a bit lower than you would expect."

British Forces now have access to an FV432 variant that uses an RWS turret with GPMG. This variant allows the gunner safe protection and magnification for supporting infantry squads.
Canadian Armed Forces now have access to their own unique Logistics and Transport trucks, in the form of the MSVS.

Canadian Armed Forces has received a large update to fix issues and improve the map layers, infantry kits, vehicles, characters and other aspects of CAF, give it a spin

As this is a sizeable update with many changes, we recommend clearing your cache to avoid any possibility of issues arising, to do so follow these instructions:

  1. Open Squad
  2. Select the Settings tab
  3. Select 'Clear cached user data' at the bottom of the screen, this will prompt you to restart Squad
Note: Clearing your cached user data will remove any specific keybindings you have set up, so you will need to reconfigure those after clearing your cache.

If you do happen to experience technical issues or crashes, please let us know with detailed crash logs, you can find more information here[offworldindustries.zendesk.com]

For a full list of changes in Beta 20, please visit our website here[joinsquad.com]]]>
Beta 20 Released https://squad-servers.com/blog/783/beta-20-released/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/783/beta-20-released/ Mon, 29 Jun 2020 23:32 CEST here.]]> 25% OFF Squad & Post Scriptum in the Steam Summer Sale https://squad-servers.com/blog/782/25-off-squad/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/782/25-off-squad/ Thu, 25 Jun 2020 19:26 CEST
It’s that time of the year again, the summer breeze is on the back of your neck, the skies are beautiful and clear, what a wonderful time to stay in and pick up your favorite games at a discounted price, eh?



That’s right! We have been blessed with a Steam Summer Sale from Uncle Gabe himself, so spread the word about savings on your favorite tactical shooters’ Squad and Post Scriptum until July 9th.

Both Squad and Post Scriptum will be 25% off throughout the Steam Summer Sale, a great time to jump in if you’ve not picked either up yet, and if you’re in the giving mood to help that friend get in the action who’s been sitting on the sidelines.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/393380/Squad/

https://store.steampowered.com/app/736220/Post_Scriptum]]>
25% OFF Squad & Post Scriptum in the Steam Summer Sale https://squad-servers.com/blog/781/25-off-squad/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/781/25-off-squad/ Thu, 25 Jun 2020 19:26 CEST here.]]> Squad - 25% OFF in the Steam Summer Sale https://squad-servers.com/blog/780/squad-25-off-in-the-steam-summer-sale/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/780/squad-25-off-in-the-steam-summer-sale/ Thu, 25 Jun 2020 19:04 CEST
It’s that time of the year again, the summer breeze is on the back of your neck, the skies are beautiful and clear, what a wonderful time to stay in and pick up your favorite games at a discounted price, eh?



That’s right! We have been blessed with a Steam Summer Sale from Uncle Gabe himself, so spread the word about savings on your favorite tactical shooters’ Squad and Post Scriptum until July 9th.

Both Squad and Post Scriptum will be 25% off throughout the Steam Summer Sale, a great time to jump in if you’ve not picked either up yet, and if you’re in the giving mood to help that friend get in the action who’s been sitting on the sidelines.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/393380/Squad/

https://store.steampowered.com/app/736220/Post_Scriptum]]>
Squad - 25% OFF in the Steam Summer Sale https://squad-servers.com/blog/779/squad-25-off-in-the-steam-summer-sale/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/779/squad-25-off-in-the-steam-summer-sale/ Thu, 25 Jun 2020 19:04 CEST here.]]> The Wrench, May/June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/778/the-wrench-may-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/778/the-wrench-may-june-2020/ Fri, 19 Jun 2020 19:12 CEST
We've rolled right through May and into June you know what that means? It's time for another Wrench, showcasing the finest work going on around the Squad modding community. It looks like we have some real treats this month, so let's dig in!

Sierra Zulu Assets Content by =SEALZ= Butcher



A huge Wrench welcome to =SEALZ= Butcher and the Sierra Zulu assets mod! Since there's no better expert, let's hear about the mod directly from the source:



"As the war spreads throughout the regions, so does the growth of professional fighters known as Mercenaries. They usually work for private military contractors (PMC). These companies recruit soldiers who have military training, experience with weapons platforms, or history as "security contractors" to provide armed combat or security services for hire. They have no national or ideological allegiances, only to the company that bankrolls them and their clients agreed upon. This is what makes them such a dangerous force to fight.



Our Mod is the Sierra Zulu, the Mercenary Group of Modern-day: mercenaries who are stationed throughout the world fighting conflicts for governments that are unwilling to risk their own troops, leading to the rise of private military contractors (PMC) as a powerful stakeholder in the business of war. Governments can now outsource missions to mercenaries without the hassle of much international oversight. Comprised of former military operators and elite fighters from around the world, they're ready to take the best gear and training anywhere the paycheck demands.



The second part of Phase 1 is our work-in-progress SquadLive Persistent Stats System. The system will gather detail of various data from in-game about what players do in-squad and with what assets. This data can offer value to players, tactics planners, map makers, modders, server admins, and the player who just wants to see the numbers."



It sounds like we're going to see a whole new world come to life! You can find out more, including their Discord and game servers, on their website.[www.sealzgaming.com]

29th ID Realism Mods by Corps of Engineer 29th Infantry Division and T/5 Perez-Pantoja



Offering an impressive and increasing amount of assets including an array of new weapons, new kits, and new vehicles! First and foremost, as you can see above, is the fast and agile Little Bird attack helicopter complete with a 7.62mm minigun AND rocket pods. The new chopper is also great for quickly dropping off six squaddies behind the lines, but the emphasis is on quick: she's a glass cannon.



Next up, they've added the SCAR-H to give the American forces something equivalent to the FAL or SKS. They've kindly opened it up to more widespread use, allowing riflemen and medics to carry it into the field.



A new kit called the Tactical Heavy Weapons Kit (or "Tee-Hawk" for short) allows a soldier to carry around the equipment needed to place and use an M2 50. a TOW, or mortar tube. Once the threat is clear, they can then pack it up and move on. The team notes "this comes at the cost of sacrificing your M4 mags, but who cares you have a freaking .50 cal?! You also have extra smokes for marking targets or getting out of dodge!"



There's also some work-in-progress on updates to the USA skin, tacticool improvements to the model such as allowing for rank patch displays. Future plans include finishing and polishing the faction, creating an automated "one-life realism" game mode with specific objectives (e.g. extracting a VIP or an all-out base assault), and sharing it with the community at large.

Be sure to head over to www.29th.org if you see anything you like!

Road from Muttrah by Cripion101



Been wondering what Cripion101 has been up to? The answer isn't so fun: recovering from a hard drive failure. The good news is everything is back and they've started working on the final coastal objective: Al-Bustan's 200m-wide hotel!



Featuring a luxurious seven floors, nearly 250 rooms, multiple entrances, rooftop access, and several internal staircases, squaddies should find themselves living the life of the rich and fam... no, wait, it's going to be brutal squad to squad combat for every meter. HELL YEAH.



Cripion101 reminds us that just because you CAN put an SPG indoors doesn't mean that you SHOULD. Welcome back from the drive crash -- we're glad to see you again!

Gradac by Hawken



We're taking a trip back to Gradac as master-modder Hawken sends along the latest updates.



The goal is to create a map that offers a mix of urban and rural fighting ranging from thick forests to open fields to dense urban environments. The changing needs of the battle will demand steady supply lines or impressive adaptability from the front line forces. Maybe both, if you can hack it!



Included are two new points-of-interest (POIs) featuring the Two Villages area, as well as a construction site. Surrounded by scattered fields, squaddies looking for long-range combat should find themselves fully sated.

Ndemalunyayo (Operation Grass Cutter) by Cabbs_ZA



We're headed to Africa, squaddies! Cabbs_ZA sends along this beautiful entry to the Wrench with a warning: Ndemalunyayo may mean "grass cutter" in the language of the Shona peoples, but it's also a term for the fearsome and deadly Black Mamba that inhabits the region. The only thing more deadly than the Mamba is a well-coordinated squad.




The map is a hand-painted fictional area inspired by the region around Eastern Angola. Cabbs_ZA has already included some personally-crafted custom assets and plans to include the map in Springbok's South Africa Border War mod. It is sure be a worthy addition to an already impressive mod!

Helicopter Training Mod by AnimalMotherUK



Building on the Squad piloting tutorial, the Helicopter Training Mod sets out to help us bring the squad alive by honing in on extended flight training in what is essentially a small map pack. The Wrench team, for one, thanks AnimalMotherUK for this noble effort!



Main bases for each Squad map featuring helicopters will have a layer that removes player respawn penalties and adds fast helicopter respawn, so you can get back to the business of destroying rotors as quickly as possible.



Custom pilot roles with the ability to speedily repair (and destroy!) have also been added for on-the-go maintenance. The end product allows players to practice offline flying, supply runs, aerial reconnaissance, and simulated drop-offs.



If you're ready to earn your wings, head over to the Steam Workshop and subscribe now!

Operation Downpour by SPECTR_Eternal



Aww yiss, it's time for another wunda-ful update! This month, as you may have guessed from the screenshots, we're returning to Harju.



This month Harju receives an updated version of a classic objective: Yehorivka's old Storage Site. Finding a new home on Harju with a fresh coat of paint, the ol' site is looking better than ever. Serving as a military storage installation in support of the nearby airfield, the locations added should bring interesting infantry fighting familiar to long time players of Squad.



New locations added in the last month also include; a lighthouse, an underground ordnance warehouse, a set of nuclear missile silos, and an 18th-century star fort.

Gaza 2020 by [SAM] Clan



A new month brings new surprises from the [SAM] Clan! Kicking off their latest update right, they've sent along two freshly remodeled, new soldiers ("The Gaza Mod Lovers"): HAT and the Marksman, which they've nicknamed "The Black Ghost". Looking more and more amazing with each update!



Next up, they've included some delicious new upgraded vehicles to haul your butt around the battlefield. Say hello to the Q20 Rocket Launcher. And yup, that's a total of TEN rockets to rain down hell. Better yet, it's modeled after a real vehicle! [SAM] Clan wants you to know there WILL be explosions. Oh boy, will there be explosions.



If you'd like to learn more or get involved, you can head over to their website[www.arabicsquad.com], or join their Discord server[discord.gg] now!

Sign-off

Unfortunately, none of the mods come in a blacklight poster version, but we're not going to rule it out for a future Wrench. Puff, puff, pass that content! Which mod looks the hottest to you? Sound off in the comments!

Get your mod featured in The Wrench by submitting it here[www.wrike.com]!]]>
The Wrench, May/June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/777/the-wrench-may-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/777/the-wrench-may-june-2020/ Fri, 19 Jun 2020 19:12 CEST here.]]> Forum Software Breach - 16th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/776/forum-software-breach-16th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/776/forum-software-breach-16th-june-2020/ Wed, 17 Jun 2020 00:02 CEST
It has just come to our attention that our forums suffered a server breach and that someone was using this breach to send out spam. As a precautionary security measure, we have closed the forums and are currently migrating them to a new system.

While we have not yet found any evidence of user information being compromised, our investigation is still ongoing and we wanted to alert players to this as soon as possible.

As a precaution, we are STRONGLY suggesting that you change the passwords on both your email account registered with the JoinSquad forums, as well as on any other accounts that may have used the same password as your forum account password. We also recommend that you change your password on any account that shares the email address you used to sign up for our forums. If you linked your Steam account to our forums in order to claim Kickstarter rewards, we also recommend that you change your Steam account password. 

These changes will help to ensure that if we do find evidence of user information being compromised, you and your online accounts are already protected. As a reminder, the registration process on our forums does not collect any personal information beyond user ID, password, and email address, so you do not need to worry about any other information. 

Thank you for your attention to this matter!]]>
Forum Software Breach - 16th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/775/forum-software-breach-16th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/775/forum-software-breach-16th-june-2020/ Wed, 17 Jun 2020 00:02 CEST here.]]> Weekend Roundup - 12th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/774/weekend-roundup-12th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/774/weekend-roundup-12th-june-2020/ Sat, 13 Jun 2020 00:19 CEST
It’s been some time since the last Weekend Roundup, and it’s a short one I’m afraid, as we get back into the swing of things.

As a reminder for you all out there, if you do have any events in mind you would like featured in the Roundup, submit your event information through here for review[www.wrike.com] to get those bullets flying in the future.

This weekend we are highlighting the signups for the 1v1 Squad PubStomp Tournament



This tournament is for any Squad clan/team member to be played as a 1v1 pub stomp style. The tournament will be held in a random single-elimination bracket format.

When two players are assigned to play each other they will queue into a pub match together and play in the same squad. Each player will try to get the most kills they can for two rounds. The players will have a three-day window to coordinate and play each match.

Sign-ups start today and end on Wednesday 6/17/2020 at 11:59 pm UTC. The first match three-day timer will start Thursday 6/18/2020 at 12:00 am UTC. For more information and the rules join the 1v1 Squad Match Discord.[discord.gg]
]]>
Weekend Roundup - 12th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/773/weekend-roundup-12th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/773/weekend-roundup-12th-june-2020/ Sat, 13 Jun 2020 00:19 CEST here.]]> A Letter From Our Producer - 10th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/772/a-letter-from-our-producer-10th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/772/a-letter-from-our-producer-10th-june-2020/ Thu, 11 Jun 2020 00:15 CEST
Your Producer Arnaud here, along with designer Tom ‘Fuzzhead’ Fancsy. It’s been a while since the last producer letter and with Beta 19 recently out, it is the perfect time to huddle up for a sitrep about all the developments happening with Squad under the hood, as well a taste for our future plans. 

First - we want to thank you for your reception to our Black Lives Matter post. The positive messages we received from players exemplified the type of welcoming, inclusive and supportive community we want to continue to expand within the game. 

The current State of Squad

The B19 Update

As our community is acutely aware, our latest release took longer than we had intended. We are grateful to our players for their patience! This update included a full Engine Upgrade to Unreal 4.23 - a challenge in itself but we aimed to literally rip out the skeleton of the game and reinforce it to one lined with Adamantium. As we found out, this wasn't the most seamless process and while we were able to make significant changes we were also met with other issues such as our VOIP system breaking, dozens of client and server crashes, game modes not working correctly, file size directory doubling in size, LOD Issues, to name a few.

We also appreciate your patience with the several releases we had to provide in order to support the issues that arose from the b.19 release.

Despite these obstacles, this Engine Upgrade brought a lot to our internal development capabilities. You can read the previously released detailed patch notes for B19 here[joinsquad.com], but we wanted to touch a bit more on the specific improvements this Engine Upgrade provided:

  1. Powerful, new diagnostic tools will enable our Devs & QA to more quickly find and tackle issues that affect performance and stability. This advancement allows the team to go full steam ahead on optimization.
  2. 4.23 has been a real boost for Environment Art -  several advancements have been made, some of these are:
  • Auto-Instancing Static Meshes - this is the single biggest improvement to Environments for 4.23. It required extra work from our end to get working correctly with Squad, but this has vastly increased our performance budget in many situations. Before this, when there were multiple instances of the same static, level designers would manually have to go through and set them to "Instance" based on their proximity to each other to save memory cost. This is now automatically done in 4.23, which in most cases means more optimization, and no extra development time - Sweet!
  • Fog Improvements - 4.23 has improved the fog system, so now our environments can have 2 layers of height fog at once. For example, a map can have low fog that's down in a valley, and can also have a thin fog that affects the entire map. We know fog has been a hotly debated topic, especially regarding the reduction of view distances when helicopters were introduced. We will continue to tweak the fog levels to find that balance between epic long-distance views and vehicle on vehicle long-range battles and the need to optimize and improve performance - the more view distance, the more strain on a player's computer performance, typically.
  • Lighting Improvements - 4.23 has improved the accuracy of shadows in some cases, but this needs to be tweaked manually. We know that lower shadows settings have been an issue in Squad for a long time, and are working towards a solution that is both performant, and looking great! We will use every tool available to us to continue to bolster our lighting efforts, and 4.23 has introduced some more tools. We would like to hear what you think of some of the new lighting improvements on our map layers, as well as your thoughts on shadow settings.

B19 Features

While B19 was primarily focused on the 4.23 Engine Upgrade, we couldn’t resist adding a few features that were prototyped but never implemented.

Body Dragging

The first new feature to B19  is something that has been requested for many years, and something that the Squad dev team always wanted to implement but was not able to fit into the schedule. That feature is Dragging - the ability to grab your teammates and literally drag him/her to cover to provide First Aid securely.

This prototype has its roots in our former ragdoll simulation overhaul back in A15.4. We decided to fix the many issues with our ragdolls not being networked properly or looking correct. One issue was one player seeing the ragdoll body in a different location than another player. All of these issues had to be resolved one by one, with a lot of trial and error. Without those issues getting resolved, dragging would never have been possible. We then got a rough working prototype of the dragging system. Several months later, we were able to take that prototype, work out most of the bugs with it, and get it implemented!

 We believe players will enjoy the added immersion, as well as the utility of being able to pull your squadmates to safety. More tweaks and fixes for the dragging feature will likely occur down the line. We would love to hear your feedback on how your experience with the dragging system has been!

Helicopter Tail Rotor Destruction

Another new feature we added for B19 is the ability to destroy tail rotors with projectiles. Previously in B17/B18, the Helicopter tail rotors were only destroyable by colliding with terrain, buildings or other vehicles. Now players can target these tail rotors directly, with small arms, AT weapons, and most effectively with larger calibre rounds like 12.7mm, 14.5mm and 25/30mms. We hope you have now had a chance to witness the spectacle of knocking out a helicopter’s tail rotor and revel in watching the bird spin out of control into a crash landing!

Nvidia Highlights

The final major new feature for B19 is adding Nvidia Highlights support for Squad. This new feature allows players that use GeForce experience to have moments in the game automatically save clips based on specific triggers in-game. This feature can be turned on and off and maybe a fun way to relive those moments if you are like me and often forget to hit the "save last 5 minutes" button after something epic has happened. We have only added a couple of initial trigger events for B19, they include: destroying a helicopter with an AT Launcher, Triggering an IED and knifing an enemy. More trigger events will be added in future releases. After using the Nvidia Highlights system, we'd love to hear from you about what you think would be good trigger events for this new feature!

B19 Challenges

B19 full development was underway early in December 2019, roughly 3 weeks before the release of B18. We were aware that Unreal Engine upgrades had caused a lot of headaches and unplanned issues in the past, so we prepared a plan of action that would sequester the update into its own file branch. This allowed the rest of the development to happen unaffected by the 4.23 upgrade until the significant issues of 4.23 could be worked out and safely merged into our main file branch.

Early on, while 4.23 upgrade was being done in an isolated branch, there were many issues, some of which included:

  • Several major client and server crashes, some related to PhysX DLLs and NetGUID.
  • Many FX particles appeared to play at 1.5x the speed they should play at. LINK
  • Dithering appeared to look much more severe on 4.23 than previously, it turned out that it was not related to dithering, but rather due to a new way that 4.23 handles world position and pixel depth offset.
  • UMG Optimisations vanished - icons and vehicle scopes went to 4k because UI textures no longer generate mipmaps automatically in 4.23.
  • Squad directory took double the size of disk space on hard drive due to 4.22 issue.
  • Vehicle wheel effects were spawning waaaay too many particles, causing tons of overdraw and crushing framerates. 
  • Environment meshes looked like they were culling/disappearing when in fact they were LODing down to a specific mesh after LOD0 after the 4.23 engine upgrade.
  • Gridlines on the map were flickering while zooming the map in or out after 4.23 upgrade.
  • Helicopters were impossible to fly due to constant warping after the 4.23 upgrade.
  • RAAS and AAS Capture Points did not unlock after the 4.23 upgrade. 

Once all the many major issues were resolved, we finally had the go-ahead to merge 4.23 into our main file branch, this occurred in late January 2020. After this, the real testing could commence with some internal testings with up to 20 or so developers. Those tests went reasonably well, though some additional issues came up that needed to be fixed:

  • DOF (depth of field) settings changed a lot in 4.23, which caused all sorts of issues with blurry ADS scopes, blurry Helicopter instrument panels and other things. This issue took a significant amount of time to figure out and nail down, and it was exacerbated by a discrepancy between how things looked in the editor vs in game.
  • Capture points became neutral then captured when the owning team player left and then re-entered the cap zone.
  • The Low-Quality Audio option in the audio menu caused several in-game issues after 4.23. This option was removed as we were under the impression that in 4.23 this setting would not provide only a negligible performance improvement, and it still continued to create many issues. We later realized despite our best intentions, this was incorrect. We’ll dig into that in more detail later on in this post.

After this round of internal playtesting and fixes was over, we felt confident enough to hold our first closed public test session of B19 with the 4.23 upgrade in place. This test had roughly 70 players and was successful (no major crashes), but several more issues came up that took considerable time to deal with. 

  • Proximity VOIP transmission was delayed by several seconds, it was only first observed in public playtesting and did not affect the Squad/SL comms.
  • Special unicode text characters that used to work in Squad B18 were no longer working in Squad B19 due to 4.23.
  • Vehicle Turret & Emplacements were lagging / rubber banding/ warping when moving the camera around.
  • Grenade projectiles did not respond to Physmats nor Material Effects anymore.
  • When placing Map markers, there was a long delay between placement and them actually appearing on the map.
  • FOBs were able to capture objectives.

These issues were fairly significant and challenging to track/test locally, which slowed our development down. Eventually, they were fixed. B19 went to open public testing on the Squad Public Testing app in late March / early April 2020. This was when we discovered the following new issues:

  • Capture Points could not be taken when a FOB or Rallypoint was nearby.
  • Placement of FOBs and Mines would break at seemingly random times.

Those final issues that were found in the open public testing were addressed, and we were confident that we had finally ironed out the remaining priority bugs that would have caused any degradation from the previous B18 experience. B19 was released May 5th 2020.

Initially, things since the release seemed to be going well, all the previous reported issues had been resolved, and we thought we had a smooth launch on our hands. Initial reports from server owners were that there were much higher than average “Ticks Per Second” on the servers, which meant server health was improved upon for B18. Unfortunately, B19 issues were not over. The real problems of B19 started rolling in:

On May 7th 2020, reports began trickling in about clients crashing in the server browser. As we began to investigate, soon after huge waves of players were crashing in the server browser, and it had dropped the player population of Squad to very low numbers. With all hands on deck, we had assembled a task force team to combat the threat, which turned out to be a concentrated external attack on the Squad community. Through fast action, the threat was mostly neutralized by quick action by our task force team, b19.1 and b19.2 addressed the issue and by Saturday May 9th, things had stabilized.
  • Players were reporting much worse client performance in B19 compared with B18, which was supposed to be the opposite. There were several culprits here: b19.3 addressed map performance on Tallil, Mutaha, Al Basrah, and other maps, that were using an outdated “HISM” tool, that now caused massive performance issues with 4.23, this was not picked up on our previous tests in those maps. More client performance problems were addressed in b19.4.1 that were caused by Bleeding Icons on the HUD, the way these were drawn was no longer efficient in 4.23 and caused massive hitches on players machines. Another client performance issue that appeared on several maps was fixed in B19.4, this was caused by an old Telephone Cable Component tool. This tool was used on several maps to connect telephone cables to the poles, and it became bugged with 4.23: normally the cables are placed in the editor, and upon runtime CPU process generates them on the map only for a second, and then they go to “sleep”. 4.23 caused this “sleep” function to break, so the cables never slept, which caused an extreme strain on client CPUs, constantly trying to calculate how the cables should sit.
  • Certain Players were not able to launch Squad at all. Through investigation, it was discovered that a certain new Plugin in 4.23 had “AVX” enabled, which caused some CPUs to be incompatible with Squad. Disabling this plugin by default restored compatibility for these Players.
  • 4.23 had changed a lot under the hood regarding Visual FX. Extensive work had been done to optimize most VFX in Squad for B19. Unfortunately, more work was needed to get back to B18 levels of optimization on that front, so B19.4 saw an extensive amount of effects changed and optimized to meet the standard. This was all mostly done “under the hood”, so from the players perspective little should have changed visually, other than getting back FPS when lots of effects like smoke grenades, explosions, etc are happening all at once.
  • The Low-Quality Audio option is a setting in Squad that is in place specifically to cater to Players with AMD FX CPU’s. The AMD FX CPU does not process the UE4 audio engine correctly, so a special mode was created to help reduce the performance burden that UE4 imposes on this particular CPU. This Low-Quality audio mode reduces audio complexity, the number of sounds that can play at one time, etc. The 4.23 engine upgrade broke several sounds in this Low-Quality Audio mode (missing sounds for M249 SAW and other weapons, various distance sounds not working correctly, etc). The information available at the time of the engine upgrade suggested that only a very small portion of AMD FX users required this sound quality mode in 4.23, so the decision was made to fore-go putting effort into delaying B19 further (which was already months delayed), in order to fix the compatibility issues for the Low-Quality audio mode. We came to realize after the full release of B19, that this was not the case, in fact, ALL AMD FX users suffered massively with the B19 update, and the Low-Quality audio mode was their lifeline to getting Squad to perform well enough in order to have an acceptable experience. Although AMD FX CPU’s fall significantly below our minimum system requirements for Squad, our team wanted to do our best to support these players where we could. As a result, we also dedicated time to fix all the 4.23 compatibility issues with the Low-Quality audio. These fixes were implemented in b19.4.1 and b19.4.2, released May 26th and June 1st. Based on all the other struggles with B19 and getting it ready for launch, It was not an easy initial decision to drop the support for Low-Quality audio mode, and unfortunately, a lot of  Players running AMD FX had to suffer for 3-4 weeks before getting relief to play Squad again, we apologize for this.
  • One positive aspect to B19 during this time was the implementation from our dev ops team of our new “Flexible releases feature”. This allows us going forwards, to release “micro” versions, which don't require both the Server and Client (player) to update. So for the b19.4.1 patch, the “.1” indicates its a micro release, and was only necessary for the players to download from steam - Servers did NOT have to update to b19.4.1 because the changes only affected player’s local machines. This saves server owners a lot of hassle having to update and restart servers, and vice versa, when there is a server-side only patch, only the servers need to update and Players do not have to. This will be an incredibly useful feature in the upcoming months ahead, as we will be able to roll out hotfixes in faster succession, as well as trialling fixes for specific issues on public servers, for issues where it is not as easy to reproduce in a test environment.
  • Player’s have reported major rubberbanding/jitter/desync issues compared to B19 with Helicopters, Ground vehicles, and Soldiers. We are still working to address these issues - we are working diligently to solve these issues and bring the experience back to B18 levels, and then improve further. B19.5.1 was released to Servers on June 9th, which was a fix pulled in from UE 4.24, which should alleviate a lot of the rubber banding issues with helicopters. The issues with ground vehicles rubberbanding/desyncing is a top priority and are currently being worked on. Soldier desyncing issues are also being investigated and prioritized.

The Modding SDK and B19

The Mod SDK for B19 was released shortly before B19. Several issues needed to be addressed to get our mod SDK compatible with Unreal Engine 4.23. Shortly after the B19 release, several crashes and other issues had been reported regarding cooking mods with B19. There is ongoing work to resolve all the issues our modding SDK is experiencing due to the 4.23 engine upgrade. Our main focus currently is the shadercore crash when loading custom mod maps. Our team is talking to select modders to get more light on the issue. We are making it a priority to get this resolved and understand the frustration our modding community is currently feeling. 

Dev Team Process - A Look-Back, and Movement Forwards

In light of all these recent obstacles, it became clear that we needed to change our approach toward Releases. In the past, we had let you know our commitment to getting out more frequent, monthly releases. 

We recognize that the engine upgrade process has been a very lengthy one. So going forward, we will be taking measures to keep our releases within a more satisfactory timeframe. We currently have no plans to do another engine upgrade this year. However, we may decide to add additional new features from Unreal Engine 4.24 / 4.25 if it is low risk and beneficial to Squad, especially for optimization.

Our plan moving forward includes:

  • Following a new, updated workflow internally.
  • Shifting how we “package up” releases, allowing us to release in smaller chunks more frequently
  • Ultimately this should allow us to release updates within shorter periods.
  • Continued commitment to transparency in our development process, along with more timely transference of this information.

What future Squad Content Can Players Expect?

Although Squad is closing in on having all its core features, you can bet your ass our dev team will still be delivering premium content for the foreseeable future!

We’ll be releasing a new roadmap with further details soon, so stay tuned for that. We want you to know about our upcoming plans, and we want to fill you in on more of the details as content gets closer to completion. There is unannounced new content to come, with our development plans for Squad already extending into 2021! 

A few things you can expect to hear more about and see on our roadmap very soon: 

  • We have a new map coming! We know some of you have heard rumours about Fallujah! Let us tell you, this map is a superb work of art!
  • We have a new faction coming! 
We have already started in on more than one new faction, and while these are much further out in terms of development, we look forward to sharing with the player base soon! For these new factions, we want to provide deeper purpose and gameplay features that fit their personality.

We have plans for even more additional content beyond this that we’ve already started work on!

Our roadmap will be dropping over the next few months, where you can expect to learn a bit more about this. 

What to Expect in B20 and Beyond

  • After the long haul of B19, the Programming team has started a deep dive into optimization. The focus is on tackling as many networks focused optimization issues and features as possible.
  • Increased Player Pop Server Tests - increased player count is indeed on our minds. We know this is an essential aspect of bringing the full Squad experience together. If server performance allows, we will unlock the increase of players to whatever upper limit still retains a stable server performance. We also know it's going to be very challenging to arrive at 100 players, and it may just not be possible with our current engine. But we will do our absolute best to push this engine to its limits, while still delivering a quality experience.
  • Option for Squad VOIP / SL VOIP L/R Ear Selection - This is a long-requested feature by many SL’s and CO’s, and it is currently under development.

If you’ve made it this far, we really appreciate your dedication! It took a lot of time and work to finalize B.19, as well as hotfix some of the new issues it brought. We are working toward a more manageable release schedule. We look forward to pushing ahead with this new update strategy!

Until next time Squaddies, stay frosty!

Arnaud ‘Arno’ Lebesnerais - Producer
Tom ‘Fuzzhead’ Fancsy - Game Designer]]>
A Letter From Our Producer - 10th June 2020 https://squad-servers.com/blog/771/a-letter-from-our-producer-10th-june-2020/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/771/a-letter-from-our-producer-10th-june-2020/ Thu, 11 Jun 2020 00:15 CEST here.]]> Beta 19.5.1 - Server-side Update https://squad-servers.com/blog/770/beta-1951-server-side-update/ https://squad-servers.com/blog/770/beta-1951-server-side-update/ Tue, 09 Jun 2020 00:24 CEST
Today we have begun rolling out a server-side update to address the increased desync/rubber-banding issues with helicopters that you may have experienced since the introduction of Beta 19.

Since we were made aware of these issues we’ve been working with Epic and their Unreal team to get a fix from the UE 4.24 version and pull it into our 4.23 environment to help combat these issues. Thanks a bunch!

As this is a server-side update, you also won’t be required to download any additional files as the fix is applied on the server you connect to. You will still see your client version as B19.5.0 but the servers will be running B19.5.1.

Please bear in mind, this fix is specifically addressing the issues found with helicopters, the team are still working to resolve the desync issues for ground vehicles and will continue to monitor the overall network performance.

Thanks again for your patience as we worked to resolve this for you.

Offworld Out.
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