Red Orchestra 2, our 2011 multiplayer shooter of the year, is now on Steam Workshop. As I write, only one map and a selection of SDK tutorials have been posted, but phase two of Tripwire's $15,000 RO2 mapping contest should incite a blitzkrieg of community-made content for the WWII shooter.
Also, for the next few days, the Tripwire Interactive Bundle is 75% off on Steam. That's $15/£12.49 for Red Orchestra, Red Orchestra 2, Killing Floor and its DLC, The Ball, and Dwarfs!? (I wasn't angry and confused about that list, the game is called "Dwarfs!?" Or is it?!)
Speaking to PCGamesN, Tripwire Vice President Alan Wilson said the exclusion of modding tools from accessible genres -- most notably shooters -- is a choice they "really can’t wrap our heads around."
"Why would you stop people from modding your game?" he asked. "Why would you prevent people from being creative with your material? Just look what done for everyone concerned, for example. Arma 2 has been on the top-ten sales charts on Steam for about the last four months solid because of what one of their employees did for fun in his spare time."
Originally a team of spirited modders, Tripwire elevated to a full-fledged development studio after Red Orchestra took the grand prize in Epic's first Make Something Unreal contest. The standalone followup, Red Orchestra 2, gets its first expansion later this year.
"Frankly, we can see zero downsides to allowing people tools and letting them mod a game," Wilson added. "I never understand why companies effectively block people from doing that stuff."
Meanwhile, DICE recently reiterated that the closed environment it has established in Battlefield 3 should remain that way, warning players not to use a mod which affects the game's color saturation.
Excellent co-op kill-o-geddon Killing Floor now has Steam Workshop support, letting fans share maps, mods and weapons. The most popular mods include a version of Killing Floor that uses Doom 2 assets, a map set in hell, a version of classic Counter-Strike mod, Gun Game and a scythe. That's a pretty good cross-section of the sort of bonus extras we can expect from Killing Floor's active modding community.
Red Orchestra 2 will be getting Steam Workshop support soon as well. To celebrate, a Tripwire Steam bundle has been on sale all weekend at 66% off. There's still seven hours left on the deal, which includes Killing Floor (and all DLC character packs), Red Orchestra 2, Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45, The Ball and Dwarfs!?
A post on the Red Orchestra blog announces Rising Storm as the first expansion pack for Red Orchestra 2. It'll ferry Red Orchestra 2's bloody, muddy realism out to the sunny, sandy beaches of the Pacific theatre, where American forces will battle the Japanese army on famous battlefields like Tarawa, Kwajalein, Saipan, Iwo Jima and Peleliu.
The expansion is a total conversion created with help from Red Orchestra's active modding community. Tripwire recruited a "hit-list" of modders who had worked with Tripwire before, and asked them to help produce the expansion.
"As Red Orchestra: Ostfront had such an avid modding community, producing some pretty good content, it made sense for the Tripwire team, the core of whom were ex-modders themselves, to offer this opportunity to a team of modders," Rising Storm producer Tony Gillham tells Gamespy.
The US and Japanese factions will be asymmetrically equipped. Gilham tells Gamespy that balancing the well-equipped US forces against a Japanese army that hardly used automatic weapons at the time is the biggest design challenge for the team at the moment, but they're hoping that carefully constructed maps can help to even out each battle. The expansion's due to arrive at an unspecified point this year, and IGN have the announcement trailer, which you can see below.
Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad, the leading tactical multiplayer WWII shooter on the PC, will take the award winning Red Orchestra franchise into the next generation of gaming. Cutting edge graphics and audio built using the Unreal Engine 3, inventive features and streamlined realism will deliver an unrivaled tactical shooter experience.
Like so many tinkering, well-armed elves in a war factory, Tripwire Interactive is putting the final touches on its 64-player, WWII multiplayer FPS, Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad. Today, they've passed along the final system specs for the game, along with the retail box art.
Minimum: OS: Windows XP/Vista/7 Processor: Dual Core 2.3 GHz or better RAM: 2 GB Graphics card: 256 MB SM 3.0 DX9 Compliant NVIDIA® GeForce 7800 GTX or better ATI® Radeon® HD 2900 GT or better Sound: Windows Supported Sound Card DirectX: DirectX 9.0c Hard Drive: 8 GB free hard drive space
Recommended: OS: Windows XP/Vista/7 Processor: Quad Core 2.6 GHz or better RAM: 3 GB Graphics card: 512 MB SM 3.0 DX9 Compliant NVIDIA® GeForce GTX 260 or better ATI® Radeon® HD 5750 or better Sound: Sound Blaster Audigy or better DirectX: DirectX 9.0c Hard Drive: 8 GB free hard drive space
Nothing unexpected, right? Having played Red Orchestra 2 on at least three different hardware configurations over the past month, I can't say that I've had any framerate issues on the systems I've used.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - email@example.com (Alec Meer)
Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad – first it had a name, then it had some screenshots, then it had some videos and now it has a release date. And so the cosmic ballet continues. Tripwire’s next commercial take on the masterfully dour World War 2 mod-gone-pro has been in the offing for a good few years, but now? Now it’s only months away. To war, gentlemen. Well, nearly. (more…)
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - firstname.lastname@example.org (Quintin Smith)
You know Red Orchestra, the supremely bleak multiplayer FPS set on the Eastern front of WW2? Darkest Hour is a similarly dark and moody mod for it which hefts out RO’s black, oily heart and transplants it into the Western Front. As well as adding new maps, new weapons and vehicles, its features include “Airborne drops… bullet suppression and supersonic cracks”. The horror.
This weekend Darkest Hour hit version 5.0, adding even more maps, vehicles and weapons (including mortars and mortar teams), as well as plenty of uplifting new features like “Players now drop their weapon when they suffer falling damage,” “Players now fall over when shot in the legs,” and “Players can catch fire from nearby exploding vehicles and world fires”. THE HORROR. Trailer and mammoth changelog after the jump. (more…)
The Darkest Hour mod brings the Western Front of World War 2 to Red Orchestra. The huge new 5.0 update adds new vehicles and maps that will let players fight through the most famous battles of Operation Market Garden, including the fight for Carentan and Hill 400. Read on for a list of the new features.
For full details on the update, head over to the Darkest Hour site. The mod is completely free to anyone who owns Red Orchestra, and can be downloaded now through Steam. Here's a summary of the new maps and vehicles.
The new maps:
Bridgehead Caen Cambes-en-Plaine Carentan Causeway Gran Hill 400 Kommerscheidt Lutremange Poteau Ambush Simonskall Vieux Recon