It's been a busy few weeks for us! Last Wednesday we released a big update, followed by some additional fixes on Friday. We are looking into implementing bots for Frontlines in Verdun, and we know some people have concerns about this. We've said a little about that below.
The Wednesday update also included many adjustments to the new sound system that we're working on - if you want to try it out, we've included instructions in this post! Finally, we have more info about a reenactment battle being run by our community this Saturday.
FMOD Beta Sound System
We have been working on improving the sounds in Verdun and Tannenberg. You can already try them out and give us feedback in this thread on the Verdun forums!
You can join the testing by adding the following to your launch options: FMOD FMOD_WIP Note: make sure you are on the latest version!
There was a lot of speculation and concern about how bots will be added to Verdun. To clarify things, aside from the survey results showing a significant interest in adding bots to Frontlines, another reason we want to do so is as an option for the low population servers like ASIA, AU, SA, etc. This will also make the game playable in the far future when player count is very low on even EU and US. See it as a last resort when regular matches are not possible. You'll also be able to enable bots in private matches.
We also hope that bots will increase player retention, particularly among new players. If people know they can play a game anytime we should see more people online. For newbies, being able to start out with some easier opponents before moving to more competitive battles with humans should make the initial hurdle of getting into Verdun easier.
UserEcho Support Site
We are moving all bug reports and suggestions (except for particular things such as the FMOD beta sound feedback thread linked above) to our UserEcho support site. We have recently made some changes to the system there so that we can answer reports more easily. It's a great tool which:
Makes it easier for us (and you) to keep track of suggestions and bug reports.
Allows you to vote on what issues and ideas are most important.
Makes it easier for us to communicate progress on issues or request additional information.
Focusing our attention there will allow us to react faster and more effectively. If you have any questions about how to best use the site, let us know.
The two GIFs in this post were taken during events run by the people behind the Verdun x64 and Tannenberg x64 group. They have recently reorganized their events into the three following categories, which should make things easier if you've not joined one before!
- Casual x64 Friday Matches (fun events) - Historical Scenarios (themed public events) - Reenactment Events (invite list only)
This Sunday they are running a Tannenberg Battle of Lemberg 1914 event. You can read more in this post!
We have released a new update to Verdun and Tannenberg. The most notable items include:
Made sure spawning within 15 meters of an enemy won't happen.
In Frontlines mode, defending squads will now be spread out in the defending sector before the start of the match.
Made spawn point order deterministic by sorting them by name during map bake. This should fix the default spawn changing after each update. Note that this update should therefore be the last update that does change spawn point order.
The game .exe is now called WW1 Game Series.exe, and appears as WW1 Game Series in the Task Manager.
Fix corner in Douaumont barracks being out of bounds
Only do 50% capspeed modifier on HQs if the game is Tannenberg (this fixes a bug where Vosges capspeed is 2x as long)
We’ve made a number of adjustments here based on the sound system feedback thread. It would be great if you could try it out and let us know what you think in the new sound system feedback thread! How to activate the new system for testing is in the post above.
Ambience volume feeling less empty.
Grenade pull volume is louder.
Trench whistle is louder.
Made shots sound louder.
Beefed up some shots with an added metal clang and resonance.
Beefed up various reloading sounds.
We now show a network health stats if they are not healthy values. It shows: Host migration, Jitter, Ping and packet loss. This can always be accessed by enabling opening the options screen. Hovering over will display the stats. Using this information we can identify why some players are having network issues such as teleportation and shots not registering.
Backspace in chat can now be held down again to remove multiple character
Added extra logging to find lagshots cause
Made it easier to play offline: When steam is in offline mode, force offline mode
Make spawn point order deterministic by sorting them by name during map bake. This can fix the default spawn changing after each update. Note that this update should therefor be the last update that does change spawn point order for the last time.
Made sure spawning within 15 meters of an enemy won't happen
We're narrowing down why some players get stuck when loading a map (often Flanders): Added a timeout of 60 seconds and extra logging when a map fails to load.
Fixed an issue where loadouts and some other stats were always reset when front-switching (but never lost when in the correct front)
Now also show supporter icon when you switch from Verdun to Tannenberg
Frontlines: Defending squads will now be spread out in the defending sector before the start of the match
Fix corner in Douaumont barracks being out of bounds
Only do 50% capspeed modifier on HQs if its Tannenberg (This fixes a bug where Vosges capspeed is 2x as long)
Added new private match chat command '/teamdamage [on|off]'. When this is enabled, shooting a friendly will now reduce your points by 10, without killing the friendly. Your points will only be reduced once every 30 seconds on the same friendly.
Added outline to icon of executable so it is also visible on a white background
Fixed deploy widget sticking around when switching to a different specialization.
Switch back to default control map when destroying chat UI, for extra insurance that the controls won't remain blocked when chat is closed.
Allow reload actions directly after inserting a stripper clip to be cancelled
Fixed occlussion culling errors with bunker-peekholes and poland houses
Fixed players being able to damage their previous team by calling artillery and then quickly switching.
Bots should no longer appear to be running while standing still
No more shock/suppression effect from friendlies running past you when friendly fire is enabled
Bots will try to keep some distance between each other (especially noticeable when capturing a sector)
Explosions/Rifle shots cause body parts to have a force applied instead of merely dropping to the ground
Fixed a kick/corrupt state when server host was not set-up yet during switch
When spawning, your arms don't stick forwards for one frame anymore
Disabled rotating camera before player is properly setup, especially noticable during pre-round screen.
Fixed an issue where NCOs were sometimes unable to use their ability call-in
Fixed a rare case where you could spawn with no ammo loaded
Upgraded Unity Post Processing stack from V1 to V2. Image effects should look the same
Changed the "Verdun" taskmanager/startbar name to "WW1 Game Series"
Changed .exe name from "1914-1918 Series.exe" to "WW1 Game Series.exe". Note that the path to output_log has changed. Now at: "%USERPROFILE%\AppData\LocalLow\WW1 Game Series\WW1 Game Series\output_log.txt"
Shadows are now more visible on snow
No longer allow spectation in RDM
Worked on the feedback we received on the FMOD_WIP (New sounds). We will now collect a second round of feedback. Changes:
New ambience layers added (people felt alone on the map)
Barbed wire volume fix (was too low)
Grenade pull volume fix (was too low)
Hitmarker sound removed
New reload sounds + added layers to beef it up
New layers to gunshots (beef up the gunshots)
New tail layer gunshots
New sounds: Fall damage + Ammo pickup + Bush/tree rustle
Verdun is celebrating its three year anniversary today! The game has seen new squads, new maps, new game modes and much more over the years. We’d like to give a big thank you to everyone who has played and supported our little (or not so little anymore!) World War One FPS. People were skeptical about an indie company making a multiplayer shooter... we’re glad we went for it anyway! Whether you’ve been with us from the early days or picked up the game recently, thank you!
Pictures are worth a thousand words, so here’s one old screenshot Verdun as it used to be, with more below...
Quite a difference, no?
This three year anniversary only counts the years since we launched on Early Access in 2015, following a Greenlight campaign (remember Greenlight?), when Verdun actually has an even longer history. Take a look at this GIF from 2013, when Verdun was a fun side project for a few college students. Back then it was a WW1 deathmatch shooter which you could play in your browser!
This is why you should always aim ;)
We also gave a sizable interview back then which included quite a comparison between the alpha and the release version.
You can see we’ve been busy over the last few years, but what’s coming next? The recent Verdun Survey was setup with exactly that thought in mind.
We had an amazing 760 responses to our Verdun Survey, so a big thank you to everyone who took the time to fill it out! There’s a lot of data to work with and we want to make sure to make wise decisions. That said, we can already see some interesting details jump out at us.
78% of respondents enjoyed Verdun a lot, and 46% said they enjoyed the game more compared to when they first bought it. This is a nice morale booster for us on the dev team!
Most of you thought there was a good variety in maps and squads… but many of you also said that you would still like more maps and squads.
The Frontlines game mode was the most popular by far, with 650+ agreeing that they played it often.
More than 350 of you were concerned about the number of players in the game, and lots of you were interested in the possibility of some ‘artificial’ opposition for Frontlines..
The technical issues people were most concerned with were performance and player numbers. We’re continuing to work on these issues of course, but without reports on our bug support website describing bugs in more detail it can be hard for us to identify bugs by ourselves.
Do you recognize this map?
500+ liked educational content in our social posts, and little more than 50% were most interested in development & update news. This is great because we have lots more of both things to share!
A huge 66% of you are interested in the community run historical battles, but haven’t had a chance to try one yet. 14% have played and enjoyed one, so congratulations to the Verdun X64 group, you’re doing great stuff!
48% of you feel that Verdun players are being properly considered in decisions about the WW1 Game Series, and 43% only said somewhat, so we can improve here - hopefully the survey was a good start.
Majorities of 600+ said that it was good for the games to be part of a series and for different games to be able to have different mechanics to reflect how the war was fought across different fronts. This is useful information for us ;)
There have been a lot of questions about what’s in the future for Verdun, and the results from the survey have given us the information we need to draw up an outline for a new roadmap going forward.
Here are our immediate action points based on the analysis we’ve done so far:
Continue to focus on bug fixes and improving performance. Making reports and voting on our bug support website is hugely helpful here - it’s hard to prioritize if we don’t know how widespread a bug is or what the exact issue is.
New sounds. As well as making the overall soundscape better, we know there are certain specific sound effects that you would like to see replaced.
UI improvements. Although we’ve had to delay the release of the new UI, we know that making sure it is polished is better than rushing it out.
Looking into implementing bots for Frontlines. Although there’s some controversy over how exactly bots should be implemented into multiplayer matches, there’s a clear consensus that would like to see at least some bots added to Frontlines when populations are low. This would of course also allow private matches fully filled with bots.
What we’ve described above isn’t the definitive list of planned content, but we believe that these are the key points for now. We’ve been amazed and humbled by the number of people who have played and enjoyed Verdun since all the way back in 2015 - and we hope to meet you all on the fields of Verdun in another 3 years.
Contestants will play throughout Saturday and Sunday, progressing through double elimination brackets - teams are eliminated only after they lose two matches.
Prizes for the first three places: 1st Place: Outlast 2, Mafia III + Mafia III: Sign of the Times, Subterrain 2nd Place: Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Laser League, Lara Croft GO 3rd Place: AER Memories Old, Overgrowth
The teams who qualified in the last six months are:
GARBAGE KID DELETORS
Super Survey - A Few Extra Realism Questions
We’ve had more than 500 responses to our Verdun survey (you can still fill it in if you haven’t already!) and it’s been very informative. Some answers are what we expected while others surprised us. We’re hoping to do a more detailed write up of the findings and our plans in the future, but for now there was one particular question we wanted to go into a little more detail on.
This was the question about whether you felt Verdun should be more realism focused or more arcade focused, on a scale from 1 to 5, with 1 being maximum simulation and 5 being maximum arcade. Unsurprisingly the majority opted for realism, with 74% of you going for 1-2, and another 20% for 3.
Trenches by night, taken by player Anubis6A.
While it’s good to confirm our expectations, we’re now looking for more details about what you mean when you say you want the game to be realistic, especially those of you who picked 2 or 3, which suggests that you don’t want the game to be accurate in every respect.
With that in mind, we have a super-short bonus survey! If you could rate how important you think realism is in a few different areas it would really help us make the right choices. Fill out the survey. Last question, we promise. Except for… more on this later!
We recently released updates with a number of fixes, tweaks, and other improvements. Of particular note:
The ‘clay soldiers’ are gone.
The stats of all bayonets now match.
In Tannenberg players can now choose which type of artillery they call in from phones - smoke, explosive and gas are available.
Full Verdun Changelog here. Full Tannenberg Changelog here.
There are more historical events coming up!
First up is the Battle of Champagne 1915. It’s a public historical battle event - once again, that means using particular loadouts and obeying your commanders! You can read the event rules on the Verdun x64 group page, and sign up for the event.
A screenshot from the last historical battle.
The next event is the Battle of Hartmannswillerkopf, september 1915 on Vosges - a realistic battle on Sunday April 29. That one will be a closed match and invite only. If you want to take part, the following post has contact details for one of the community organizers running the events. You can contact them on Steam or Discord to ask about being added to the invite list.
See you for the next Frontline News! Until then, stay up to date by following us on Twitter or Facebook.
At the WWI game series HQ we have been quite busy with wrapping up Tannenberg for its launch whenever the new UI system is finished (It will be better, we promise).
Of course, we’ve not been sitting still on other fronts! While watching the latest games industry trends we’ve spotted a relatively unexplored niche in the market. There are a few games appearing in the survival genre, but we have a most unique twist: Just like the movie Highlander “there can only be one victor”. I’m sure you’ve never heard of such a game idea before, but we are sure it’s going to be popular. We even came up with a name for it:
We all know the bitter Northern Front is the ideal place for such a scenario.
Our concept would include a starting sequence in which players are parachuted out of a monoplane onto the vast Northern Front theater, where they will have to fight wolves, rats and other players for survival. All this will be set in a post-apocalyptic alt-right universe.
After our last cooperation with EADICE(™) in 2016 on the crossover, vehicles are no problem for us! Well… if you have the correct DLC that is.
Beside the innovative gameplay, we would also include community-requested features - one example being the ability to shoot,reload, or pretty much do anything while jumping as high as possible for maximum 1337-skill levels. All inspired by early 20th century Thunderbirds-style jetpack tech.
FAB looking Thunderbird l33t player, moments before recking your last loot crate!
Last but not least we have taken a look at the most successful features of similar games and came to the conclusion that additional bragging and gambling features are the way to forward, if we want that 4th house in Cabo for our shareholders to ensure a sense of pride and accomplishment for players as they collect different mustaches.
WIP of our booty crate system.
That pretty much wraps it up for this April first. An exciting step forwards for the franchise, if not the entire industry. Have a great Easter!
Welcome back to another Frontline News! There’s a historical battle planned this weekend by the community, and a survey for Verdun veterans and newbies alike! If you want to have your say about Verdun’s future direction (and the direction of the WW1 Game Series as a whole) then the survey is open right now.
There was a great response to our Tannenberg Survey, and more than a few people asking for an equivalent Verdun Survey… so we put one together! You can fill out the Verdun Survey right now. We’re looking forward to getting more awesome feedback :)
Historical Battle Next Weekend
Another community organized historical battle is on the way! You can sign up now for the upcoming historical battle, to be held next Sunday, April 8. Read about the details and sign up in this thread.
If you’re not familiar with these historical battles, the basic concept is that players sign up and agree to follow rules about using certain roles and weapons, and most importantly following orders from superiors. This allows more organized and focused ‘set-piece’ battles - one of our devs joined the last Verdun battle and made some GIFs of the experience. Here's one:
The x64 group don't only run historical battles - they also organize casual events and more. This post explains it all. Take a look if you're interested in joining an organized battle :)
A New Gun for Tannenberg
It's not strictly Verdun news, but this latest gun teaser for Tannenberg was too cool not to share! The Roth-Steyr M1907 was the first semi-automatic pistol adopted by a branch of a major land army. It stands out with the long bolt and integral 10 round magazine loaded from the top with stripper clips.
Thanks to our player echo1 once more for their amazing combat photography (the first image in this post), and we'll see you again for the next Frontline News!
A move to a new version of Unity should bring performance improvements, and if you’d like to take part in a historically focused Battle of the Somme within Verdun, you’ll be able to this weekend!
First, a quick reminder that if you run into any bugs, please submit them here: https://verdun.userecho.com/ It helps us keep everything organized and lets us focus on the most serious bugs which are affecting the most people!
Unity Update We recently released new updates for Verdun and Tannenberg - now that they share the same code base it allows us to do these kinds of simultaneous updates much more easily. Both games will benefit from our move to the latest version of Unity - in our tests we’ve seen low-end machines getting around a 10% performance boost, and some high-end machines get up to a 25% improvement.
Sprinting You will also be able to stop to aim or crouch while sprinting, then return to sprinting without needing to repress the sprint key - we’re hoping this and similar changes in the future can make movement feel more natural and fluid. Let us know your thoughts if you’ve noticed this change!
Bots and more! Bot aiming behaviour has been tweaked so they should be less ‘jittery’, and they won’t be aiming down the sights unless they can see an enemy. We’ve also fixed a couple of weapon animations and an issue with invisible flamethrower flames that some people were reporting, and we switched to Fullscreen Windowed rather than Fullscreen Exclusive, which fixes a freeze issue, improves alt-tabbing, and solves a Unity screen focus problem. You can read the full changelog here.
The Battle of the Somme
A group of our players is setting up another pair of 64 player historical battle events, this time for the Battle of the Somme! You can read about the rules for the match here, and join the group if you’re interested! In short, players commit to using particular classes and weapons, and then following the orders of a commander and their NCOs. This allows actions like coordinated bayonet charges and a general sense of being part of a more organized battle.
Here’s a photo of the French team from a previous historical battle, and another one from the German perspective during the battle. A European match is scheduled for Friday 16, and a US match on Saturday 17.
The Overpowered Noobs E4I Verdun World Cup has its penultimate qualifier coming up tomorrow! For an overview of the teams competing, check out this preview piece by caster Soren Patton. The action will be broadcast live on Twitch - best of luck to all the participants!
Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for news and interesting history snippets until our next Frontline News post, or talk with us on Discord!
We’ve been working hard on performance since the last Frontline News, though of course not everyone on our team is a programmer, so we have some new sounds to show off alongside our other news…
^screenshot by player [INEGRONI]MASTERMASCO^
Unity Engine Update
If you didn’t know, Verdun and Tannenberg are made in Unity. This means that when Unity releases updates, both good and bad things can happen with our code - luckily, this time it’s all good!
In short, the latest Unity update fixes some issues and makes some improvements which should have a big impact on performance. Combined with work we’ve been doing on how ragdolls are handled, we’re looking at perhaps a 20-25% improvement in performance - this will depend on the exact combination of hardware you’re using, of course.
There is still more work to be done to get everything ship-shape, but we’re hoping to be able to roll out this update soon!
On the topic of teasers, check out these five new weapon sounds, all recorded from real guns!
This Friday at 4:00 PM CET we are going to be trying out a new feature on Steam - live streaming from our Steam Store page! If you’re interested in watching us play and chat about Verdun, just visit the Verdun Store Page. Both through a web browser or inside the Steam app itself will work fine. We hope to see you there!
Keep an eye on our Steam news (follow us if you like) or watch for our announcements on Facebook or Twitter to hear about our next Frontline News post.
For today’s Frontline News we have some cool events for you, one official and one player organized, along with a chance to get Verdun in a special Humble Bundle!
Verdun World Cup North American Qualifier
The next qualifier round in the Verdun World Cup tournament being run by The Overpowered Noobs is coming up this Saturday February 10! You will be able to watch the action live on their Twitch stream! Pro caster Soren Patten has a great write-up introducing the teams who will be competing on the OPN website. Which team are you supporting?
Sturm-Bataillon Nr. 2
If you’re interested in joining a clan for some more organized play, you could do a lot worse than Sturm-Bataillon Nr. 2! We posted one of their trailers on our social media recently, and if you didn’t see it it’s definitely worth taking a look on YouTube.
Historical Battle Event February 18
A group of Verdun players are running a historical battle scenario on February Sunday 18! It will be a 32 vs 32 player battle on the Argonne map, with friendly fire and with players expected to take specific squads and loadouts in order to replicate the actual battle for the Argonne.
Each side has a commander, who gives orders to the whole team and leads them. Soldiers and NCOs alike have to obey his orders, with NCOs and the commander allowed to shoot soldiers that disobey orders. The event will be held on the 18h of February. Start time will be 7 PM German time or 7 PM CET. If you want to take part in an epic battle, add your name to the list below. There are 49 participants so far! https://doodle.com/poll/w2vh5wdbqtm2tzs2
Humble Bundle Best of 2017
We’re proud to say that Verdun is part of the Humble Bundle’s Best of 2017 bundle! You can get Verdun and seven other great games selected from various bundles from across the course of 2017. Take a look!
That’s it for now. The screenshots above were made by our player echo1, a very talented frontline photographer! If you have some cool shots of your own, upload them on Steam, or post them on our Twitter and tag us so we can retweet our favorites! Keep an eye on our Steam news (follow us if you like) or watch for our announcements on Facebook or Twitter to hear about our next Frontline News post.
The main part of the Merge Update is, well, the merge of our two games. The code bases are now aligned, which is essential to our long-term goal of continuing support for Verdun. As a small team, we simply can’t support two different code bases.
This merge will allow us to make more frequent updates to Verdun - the differences between Verdun and Tannenberg had made it impossible to do side-by-side updates, but now that the two games are aligned, we have a unified platform. It also means that we can switch our focus to performance optimization for both games.
One side-effect of the merge is that a number of bug fixes done during the development of Tannenberg are now applied to Verdun, which can have unpredictable results, such as the way strafe movement was affected. We moved quickly to resolve that issue, and we will continue to do so as necessary. You can report bugs on our forums or at our support website.
However, although all the benefits might not be immediately obvious from a player perspective you should make no mistake - this merge is a big step forward. It makes it possible to continue properly supporting Verdun and Tannenberg together into the future. Plus you no longer need to quit one game to play the other! If you own both Verdun and Tannenberg, there’s now a slick in-game menu so that you can switch from West Front to East Front and back again with ease.
When you load up Verdun, one of the first things you’ll notice with the update are the new graphical features. Screen space shadows add more depth to the world around you, while new image effects, reflection probes, and a deepsky fog system subtly enhance the atmosphere.
Smaller changes include performance tweaks, animation adjustment, changes to the Douaumont map (we have been aware of continuing criticisms on the forums), and more. The full changelog is long, but as we said earlier, the biggest changes are highly technical and behind the scenes.
Steam Daily Deal
To celebrate the merge, the complete WW1 Game Series bundle is part of the Steam Daily Deal! This is a great opportunity to introduce friends to the delights of WW1 FPS action, or to pick up Verdun or Tannenberg if you don’t own one of them yet, with a game left over to gift.