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Author Topic: Holdfast: Nations At War  (Read 1798 times)

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #15 on: May 22, 2017, 02:08:12 PM »
2-Gun Schooner. A worthy adversary
21 May - AGS | Refleax



Sail off the starboard bow! This week we are leaving shore to take a look at one of the vessels that will be included within Holdfast: NaW at our Early Access release. This 2-Gun Schooner modelled after the ‘Axel Thorsen’, packs quite the unique and original design for a sail ship. While these vessels were primarily used as coastal patrol and harbour defence, under a good crew their powerful armaments can inflict serious damage on far larger warships.

Watch the video below to check out the in-game footage:


While sailing around on the 2-Gun Schooner, one of our dearest developers did a great job at aiming his spyglass in the other direction. However, don’t your worry, he’s well suited for the Captain’s role. Three cheers for the good fellow!

The 2-Gun Schooner
This gunship is armed with two 46-pounder long guns situated on two rotating platforms at it’s front and back. These cannons are much larger than is common aboard a warship and so pack a tremendous punch.


With careful, diligent and tactful use of this ship, a good crew can have a significant impact in the game. Due to its size and lateen-rigged sails, this ship manoeuvres much more nimbly than the larger vessels so it can potentially leap into strike before dancing away from danger. One should never forget the devastating might of the 46-pounder guns under the hands of a good gun crew!

This ship will also be present in many of our coastal assault maps, making it ideal for destroying coastal defences before leading the landing party ashore.

Improved sailing mechanics
Each and every sail has an effect on how fast it can make the ship go and it’s turning rate. Lateen rigged sails will give you greater manoeuvrability while square rigged sails will give you better speed.

Square-rigged sails however, reduce your capability of sailing into the wind. This means that it would be best to lower them if you want to go towards that direction. Lateen sails are triangular in shape while square rigged sails are more rectangular.

Sails for each ship are grouped up and can be raised using the ‘W’ key or lowered using the ‘S’ key. The ship will gain speed according to the amount and type of sails raised rather than by direct user input. It isn’t like stepping on the gas!

To allow for even further control over a ship for those who wish to master the art of sailing you can raise or lower a specific sail group by using the number keys (1 to 6). For instance, one of our biggest ships has 6 separate groups of sail while the 2-Gun Schooner shown in this blog has only 3 groups.

We did this, of course, to give ship combat more tactical depth and to encourage competitive play to occur on our oceans as well. Under skilled hands, these ships will move gracefully through the water until the enemy fills them with holes of course.

Holes? Yes! Our ships are fully destructible with cannon shots breaking parts of the ship that they hit. Want to immobilise one of these gunships? Try destroying her mast to cripple her before boarding. Are the enemy cannons doing you damage? Break them!

Steering changes. Plans for future sailing mechanics
We also have plans on making the ships steer according to how far the captain's wheel or tiller is turned. This is because we would like to change the mechanics for ship steering to properly reflect steering an actual vessel.

You will press the ‘D’ or ‘A’ keys to rotate the captain’s wheel a certain amount of degrees depending on how hard a turn you would like to make. The ship’s wheel will visually turn according to the direction you’re steering towards. Much like the ship’s speed, this means that it will increase the complexity of the system to give players a chance to further increase their skills.


Harouti Islands
You’ve most likely already caught a snippet of the following map from the video of the 2-Gun Schooner. Harouti Islands is a naval only map which features several large rock formations and tropical islands that offer a great deal of cover. Make good use of these natural formations to outwit or flank your enemy.


Thanks for joining us in the water! As we get inexorably closer to an Early Access release we are increasingly focused on finalising the game mechanics and assets needed to create a standalone quality release which we can then build on. Having firm foundations will mean we can push higher than if we attempted to rush something out of the door so thank you all for being patient with us.

Feel free to join in the discussion for the following blog hereand tell us what you think.

Until next time, may good health be yours.

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #16 on: May 28, 2017, 07:58:33 PM »
Crosshills. Skirmish map and time of day
May 28, 2017- AGS | Refleax



Don a pair of sturdy boots because this week we are taking a look at one of our skirmish maps - Crosshills. This environment features rough terrain with a lot of vegetation and trees which means you will constantly need to be on the lookout for an ambush!



Malakith leads the way across one of the skirmish maps in Holdfast: Nations At War - Crosshills. There are also some bits and bobs we have yet to mention in our developer blogs which can be seen in the trailer! Perhaps you can spot them.


What we've shown in the video is still a work in progress and is subject to change depending on feedback from our community. The day and night cycle has been sped up for showcase purposes.



Crosshills

We needed some larger playing environments for both teams to be able to start to conduct more tactical play.

The difference in the terrain heights among both the hills and the smaller ravines will make skirmishes more prolonged and any attempts to push forward will need to be wary of their flanks. You can hear birdsong, creaking trees and other expected noises which further immerse you in the scene. Without the crashing of cannons and muskets, this is a peaceful area. You can look forward to bringing a little chaos to the sleepy shadows beneath these trees!


The improvements that we have been making to the visual quality of Holdfast: NaW are readily apparent within this scene, what do you think? We think this environment combines visually striking scenes with an interesting challenge to navigate while playing.

We've also been very careful to make sure that we don't do these graphical updates at the cost of performance. Part of this is the inclusion of customizable graphics settings so that users can really fine-tune their experience and get the game playing and looking the best for their own machine.



We’re looking forward to seeing lengthy and tactical battles raging across its terrain. Our battlefield gamemode of which concept is centred around reinforcements and spawning in waves will make this all possible!


Time of Day. Day and night cycle

We have been working hard on bringing interesting changes to the same locations, the most obvious of which is that you can currently play this map in both day and night. What is more is that we have a real cycle between them so in longer battles you may see the battlefield completely and dynamically change as it gets darker or brighter!


New maps. A work in progress

Our selection of maps to play on is also increasingly expanding. We have a snow-based winter scene that is going through its final passes. It's going to be a plains-based terrain map aimed at providing a canvass for cooperative army play. If you have ideas for scenes that will work for a Napoleonic battle, then feel free to share them with us on our forum.

We are trying our best to avoid feature creep so any more complicated scenes will be pushed back until after our Early Access release (otherwise it will take forever to get the game into your hands!). We feel that rushing things out will not do justice to our vision for Holdfast: NaW.

We'll be revealing additional maps that are already done and ready for the release of the game on Early Access this year in our future developer blogs!



Steam community group. More than 2000 followers!

Our thanks go out to each and every one of you! We have passed the 2000 member threshold for our Steam community group which is an incredible show of interest. Obviously, as this is a multiplayer focused game we need as large a community as we can push for and we really appreciate all of the help you are giving us to achieve that aim.

Steam Community Group

That’s all for now folks. Remember to send us your map ideas and to keep sharing the game around! It would also be great if you can give us your feedback on the background music we've used in the above video.

You can join in the discussion for the following blog here and until next time, may good health be yours.



Once again thank you for all of your support from all of us on the Holdfast: NaW team,

- Peter, Andrew, Julian, Andreas, Nico, Cameron & Tassilo

Anvil Game Studios

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #17 on: June 09, 2017, 02:12:16 PM »
Desert ruins. An army based map
June 08, 2017


Dust your muskets and roll up your sleeves because this week we are venturing into the heart of the desert to visit the remains of civilisation long since past. As we mentioned in our last blog, we are hard at work finalising our selection of maps that will launch with our early access release. We will also be giving you further insight into the user interface and our plans for it based on the feedback we’ve been receiving from our community.


Raw in-game footage of one of our army maps - Desert Ruins. We also show you how the newly reworked nameplates system looks like at the very beginning of the video. It’s much cleaner now that nameplates only become visible when you’re looking directly at another player!

What we've shown here is still a work in progress and is subject to change depending on feedback from our community.

Desert Ruins

Desert ruins will play host to some of the largest brawls seen in Holdfast: Nations at War. The terrain while fairly uniform and open is littered with small elevation differences, palm trees and extensive ruins.


This means that it ends up in a combination of chaotic cover and open spaces. If you ever have time to gaze away from the combat around you, the ruins themselves are an impressive sight. Featuring the remains of bath houses, temples, houses, columns, city walls, and an aqueduct this setting will see fierce hand to hand combat within the remains of the ancient urban paradise.


Scaling the walls to gain an advantage over approaching enemy infantry comes at the risk of being an easier target for the field guns in the open sands. The quiet rustling of wind on sand will soon give way to the boom of cannon and crash of hot metal.


Once again our dynamic day/night cycle comes into play for longer skirmishes, the desert becomes a completely different beast in the cool of night. It has been designed to support the army assault, battlefield and deathmatch game modes.


New maps. On-going progress

Along with all of the scenes we have previously shown, players can expect even more army based maps for the early access release. The first of these is a winter scene which has just been finalised of which we can talk more about in a later developer blog. Furthermore, we took some time to create a much smaller ‘arena’ scene so that players who wish to practice or improve their melee combat skills, have a close-quarters area to do so.


You’re more than welcome to share with us any ideas for scenes you may have. Head over to our forums and join in the discussion in the below thread to do so.

Map Concepts - Share with us your Ideas!


User interface. Community feedback

First of all, we would like to thank you all for being so responsive and supportive. This is enabling us to make improvements to our game based directly on your feedback before we even enter early access! Our most recent example is that there were concerns raised over the amount of screen space being taken by the displaying of friendly player’s names all of the time. We heard you and have now changed the system to only show a player’s name when you are looking directly at them.

We are also looking into ways of helping the player distinguish friend from foe so further feedback as we introduce these systems is greatly appreciated! It is our aim to have this and other sections of the UI toggle-able so that you can tailor it to your own desired experience.

Following on from that we have made some changes to our UI, most notably disabling the objectives panel until we can put our final minimalist UI design into place. We have more improvements and changes in store for the UI further down the line in our development roadmap. This includes reducing the size of the minimap to the bottom left of the screen. We’ll keep you updated.


Join us on Discord group chat!

We would like to extend our invitation for you to join us on our Discord group chat. It’s been great seeing the community engage in discussions about the game. Your feedback has been truly useful to help us improve and plan ahead our development roadmap for the game which we’ll be making publicly available when we go into early access this year.

We hope to see you there soon and please do spread the word around!

https://discordapp.com/invite/XsHBUNs

You can join in the discussion for the following blog here and until next time, may good health be yours.


Once again thank you for all of your support from all of us on the Holdfast: NaW team,

- Peter, Andrew, Julian, Andreas, Nico, Cameron & Tassilo

Anvil Game Studios




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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2017, 02:29:25 PM »
An officer's duel. Ongoing progress
June 25, 2017


We’re back with a bit of a mix of information today. As we draw ever closer to our release into Early Access we are fine-tuning assets and gameplay systems across the board. We have a special something to begin with! Napoleon and Wellington both didn’t like their officers duelling but sometimes disagreements were still decided by blood in secret...


Beat the drums! One good chap meets his unfortunate end in a duel between two officers. What you’re seeing here is raw unaltered footage taken directly from the game. Everything here is still being fine-tuned and should be considered a work in progress.

Role-playing and interactions

That video highlights another important aspect of our vision for the game. We feel that the type of gameplay we reward here should have more depth than just point scoring. We have already talked about our focus on community, competitive gameplay mechanics and planned content.

It is another direction that we would like to draw attention to here today. ‘Roleplay’ sits quietly in the corner of a game like this, taking form in small ways like spontaneous duels on the battlefield and even bigger ways like entire servers dedicated to the simulation of a garrison or battlefield.

To support our community to play the game as they want we are allowing server administrators free-reign when it comes to game settings and server configuration. One example might be the epic onslaught of an open field battle with an extended time-limit and reinforcements spawning in waves; watch the day-night cycle swoop by as the forces clash over and over again. We're also working on new functionality right now which will further increase the dynamicness of the battlefield.

On top of that our environments and systems have had that extra level of interaction and polish; for instance, you may have noticed pianos, walking, voice-acting, musicians, interaction with lanterns, and other in-game objects. You can also take a seat with your friends for a moment's respite in the middle of a battle!


We have a list of features we want to include after our initial early access release to both increase the depth of the game as well as give the players more options in terms of how they can play it. This includes things like detachable bayonets, surrendering, 3D VOIP and more musicians. Players will also have control over the 3D VOIP system - You will be able to adjust the volume and mute other players while server administrators, can directly disable 3D VOIP functionality from their servers. As the game progresses, we look forward to continue working with our community to fine-tune features and work out our priorities for new systems.


Colour profiles. Changing the game’s colour scheme

Preferences in terms of look and feel are very subjective and so we have decided to ship with several options for players to pick from in terms of colour palette. Some might prefer a more ‘grim’ look to their games compared to the vibrant colour scheme you have seen so far. We can cater to both!

Normal - This is the default colour scheme of the game. It’s quite bright and colourful.


Gritty - This is the first of our selectable colour profiles. It’s a personal favourite of mine and makes everything look more gritty.

1800 - A colour profile for your atmospheric screenshots and videos.


Experiment with them all and choose one that suits you best. Feel free to put forward your ideas to us for additional colour profiles.


Palisade arena

We heard that our players will need somewhere to practice their skills in close combat and so our scene-makers have produced this little area for just that purpose. Server options to disable firearms for the deathmatch game mode were also included for admins to force combatants to only use melee weapons. Be it organised competition, practice or even normal gameplay we hope this smaller scene will suit your needs.


Close quarter arena specifically designed for melee combat. Four interactable lanterns stand in the middle of the field to increase visibility during night time. We have also sped up the dynamic day-night cycle for showcase purposes.

Right now we’re in the middle of finalising work on the objectives panel to the left of the screen and the in-game chat.


Army based maps. On-going progress

We are working on several scenes that are designed to be played with larger player numbers and bigger game-goals. These environments take time due to their size as we have to balance the aesthetics, interesting locales, game balance, interaction and performance all at the same time.

Now that we have finalised both the snow scene and the arena map that we’ve shown in the developer blog; we’re working on yet another army based map. We know how important content on army based features and functionality are for our community so we’re putting all the time we can invest into that before our early access release.

The next map we’re currently working on is designed with the intent to promote both close quarter and long range combat. Close quarter combat will take place inside two small urban areas situated in the middle of the map. Both of these urban centres are separated by a river, but a bridge connects them both. We surely hope to see some intensive charges taking place here! We’ll be leaving the rest for another blog post. We’re very excited to show it off.


Animations. Community feedback

Members of our community have expressed that we could do with a couple of improvements to the forward musket running animation. So we did just that! We added more movement to the shoulders and sway to the musket so that the movement now looks more natural and fluid.

The list of animations in Holdfast: Nations At War has grown to be quite substantial. Since we opted for developing a directional melee combat system into the game the number of animations required has also increased tenfold! We’ll continue working on improving and polishing our animations both before and during early access.


We hope that by now we’ve shown both our dedication to this project and a willingness to listen to our community. You’ll also see this being reflected in its entirety in our roadmap for the game we’ll be releasing when the game is out on early access this year.

Anvil Game Studios is hoping to create more than just a single release with Holdfast, our priority is the creation of a community around a shared vision. Therefore we are committed to increasing the scope of the original game after the official release as well as working on more content to start to build up a franchise. It makes sense for our intended playerbase to be a big part of that and we really appreciate all of the support and suggestions that you have been giving us up until now.

Please do join in on our Discord. We’d love to get to know you better and gather your thoughts about the game!

https://discordapp.com/invite/XsHBUNs

You can join in the discussion yourself on the following blog here
 and until next time, may good health be yours.



Once again thank you for all of your support from all of us on the Holdfast: NaW team,

- Peter, Andrew, Julian, Andreas, Nico, Cameron & Tassilo

Anvil Game Studios
 

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2017, 02:37:19 PM »
Arendan river. A countryside village
July 09, 2017


Right let’s get straight into it, shall we? This blog is another batch of items that we are ready to talk about for our upcoming Early Access release. We have another look at our map list, talk about gameplay on specific maps, some UI changes and finally a note about our closed playtesting sessions.


Having a stroll around Arendan River - one of the army based maps playable on the release of Early Access this year. You will do yourself good to watch out for fellows trying to take shots at your person in the quiet countryside village!


Arendan river

We needed a scenario large enough to be able to play on competitively, have a mix of long range and closed quarters density and finally attempt to balance it from both sides. What we ended up with is Arendan River, a scene featuring rolling open green, lightly wooded countryside and a small village.




Both sides will start looking down into the river valley from fortified positions (each featuring two field guns) but will need to push the open spaces and the village to win.




Close quarter combat will take place in the village halved by the river. Infantry garrisoning these buildings will be hard to get to as many feature narrow entrances and even upper floors. The fighting will be fierce, quick and often rely on the bayonet over the musket ball.




Charging across the stone bridge from one side to the other will also prove to be a difficult challenge. The village itself is quite the sight and features things like a peach orchard, an outhouse, watermill, lanterns, a piano and plenty of benches to rest on!




Outside of the village, the river can be crossed by a natural crossing on one side of the village and a small wooden bridge on the other. Both of these pathways serve as great flanking positions for those who aren’t looking forward to direct confrontation.




In contrast with the village, the rest of the terrain consists of gentle slopes, rock formations and various fauna. Fighting outside of the village will be over larger distances but will be no less deadly with the presence of artillery batteries on both sides.




It is important to note that while right now they are unrealistically sturdy, we will eventually change these buildings to be destructible after taking enough damage. On top of that, there will be a change later on that will allow players to swim across the river at the cost of their ammunition.






Army based maps. Ongoing progress

We have shown off a number of our finalised assets but we are keen to enter Early Access with a good selection of maps. Army-based maps are of particular importance to the community and we want to deliver.

The next map we will be talking about is based on a particular soft spot for a member of our team; the Scottish Highlands!

We are also taking what you are saying into account when it comes to their design. With the most obvious example being, creating a place for you and our entire community to share with us your map ideas! You’re most welcome to join in the discussion by heading here: Map Concepts - Share with us your Ideas!




User interface. More changes

As you can already tell from the above video, we have significantly reduced the size of the minimap. We’ve also added some polish to the objectives panel as well as the nameplates themselves in an attempt to make it even easier to understand the situation at a glance. This has the bonus effect of decluttering the screen which leaves more open space to enjoy the game itself on.

 

We’re also working on a system that allows you to toggle on and off specific elements of the user interface including the minimap. This was a highly requested feature from our community so we’ve made sure to slot in some time for it. We’ll talk more about this in our next developer blog!




Community spotlight. Gathering direct feedback

We’ve been gradually inviting YouTubers and members of our community to the game so they can provide us with direct feedback and help us with testing the game. The emphasis has been selecting individuals with a passion for this type of gameplay.

All the feedback we received from all corners within our community has been very helpful for us and we have you to thank for that. We will be looking for more active fellows on our Discord and forums to help us out in future playtests. We’ll also be inviting some of you to take part in our pre-release event for the game!

Do check out the below YouTube videos for a listen to what Malakith, Warrior of Sparta, Chadtopia and Resonant have to say about the game. Every hit we get is a new potential player to fill the servers and grow the community so we would ask that you support us by supporting content like this.

Malakith Skadi

Warrior of Sparta

Chadtopia

Resonant


We would like to close this blog by expressing once again our heartfelt thanks to all of you who have been providing us with feedback and suggestions for the game on our Discord, forums and everywhere else within our community. We’re working hard to make the game more widely available so that your patience is not tested for much longer!

Here's a link to our forums and Discord:

http://www.holdfastgame.com/forum

https://discordapp.com/invite/XsHBUNs

You can join in the discussion yourself on the following blog here and until next time, may good health be yours.



Once again thank you for all of your support from all of us on the Holdfast: NaW team,

- Peter, Andrew, Julian, Andreas, Nico, Cameron & Tassilo

Anvil Game Studios

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #20 on: July 15, 2017, 07:52:11 PM »
The coastal siege game mode is in the works.


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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #21 on: July 17, 2017, 02:01:58 PM »
I have been playing this. This is what I think so far.

•   Great visuals. Brilliant lighting.
•   Great sound
•   Smooth animations
•   Dynamic weather works well
•   Awesome fog effect
•   Great naval battles.
•   Very good water/sailing mechanics
•   Great ballistics.
•   Very nice maps
•   Great developers who really listen. They actually care.


Teamwork is possible., with the right people.

So far I really like it.  :thumbsup

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #22 on: July 17, 2017, 05:50:43 PM »
I've been keeping an eye on it, and hoping for the best.  :thumbsup

There was another co-op age-of-sail battle game in early access, too (but with no land battles to speak of). Wonder how that's going?
Mp Decisive Campaigns: Blitzkrieg videos (in progress)

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #23 on: July 17, 2017, 07:31:48 PM »
I just hope they add Calvary soon.
I am keeping an eye on this.

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #24 on: July 17, 2017, 08:42:56 PM »

There was another co-op age-of-sail battle game in early access, too (but with no land battles to speak of). Wonder how that's going?

Blackwake?

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Re: Holdfast: Nations At War
« Reply #25 on: July 17, 2017, 08:43:57 PM »
I just hope they add Calvary soon.
I am keeping an eye on this.

Cavalry will be added. We had a long discussion with the devs about this and other things.

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