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Plot of the game
 
The ancient doom prophecies become true, but not the way that many have imagined. A bright spot among the seas of stars attracted astronomers' attention. The studies and observations of the object allowed determining its nature as a class C comet. The first wave of exultation was followed by surge of panic as the trajectory calculations revealed high probability of collision with the Earth. The comet has passed in close vicinity from our planet and singed the atmosphere by its tail, raining a meteorite shower upon the surface, bringing death and devastation. As smoke and cinder eventually cleared away revealing cities in ruins and scorched Earth, people witnessed a Catastrophe. Slowly but steadily the restoration began. But meteorites were not just of a dead stone. A new life was emerging around them - an alien life. Aliens began to grow and develop with great speed, and after a certain incubation period they gradually transformed into some sort of extraneous vermin, which, when contacting a human being, can root into the back of the head in order to gain control of its victim.

As the main character you are about to visit the hottest spots of the crisis, collect information about alien forms and stop the infestation.

About the Game
 
Codename: Outbreak is a tactical 3D action, where the player is to command a task force.

The gameplay is close to real task force actions at well-guarded enemy objectives, when the success of the whole operation very much depends on remaining invisible for security system, and suddenness being the major advantage. That is why it seems barely possible to win the game by mere annihilating all the enemies - skirmishes and explosions within a well-guarded enemy base will end up in the detachment spotted and quickly killed. The player will have to act stealthily and quietly, learn patrol system to deliver sudden strokes, hide in the premises' shadows and make ambushes, lay mines on the path of heavy machinery, use the advantages of weapons and equipment, carry out sniper shooting, destroy shadowing cameras.

All the missions are played by a team of two fighters - a player and his mate. The teammate in Outbreak is not just an assistant, ready to help with fire or cover the player in case of danger. It's nearly impossible to get through some of the missions without teammate. There are frequent situations when several enemy sentries must be killed simultaneously in order to restrain them from giving the alarm. Then the teammate's participation becomes really of the essence. By means of a special command player can order him acquire the target needed and simultaneously open fire afterwards. Besides, it is possible to order the teammate to cover the player, stand ground, attack enemy or cease shooting. The player can switch between his soldier and the teammate anytime to carry out the most complex actions himself.

The computer rivals' artificial intelligence is based on use of virtual hearing and sight algorithms, helping computer players to pattern their behavior in the game. The virtual hearing algorithms allow rivals to react upon sounds spread around the level. Thus, for instance, the sound of skirmish or explosion will attract a patrol to have heard it or if the player passes behind the backs of a patrol, the noise produced by his steps will end up in the soldiers turning back and opening fire. The virtual sight algorithm allows computer opponents, first of all, to have the same range of vision as the player (that's why they don't see what is happening behind their backs).

Secondly, the distinctness of vision gets worse when objects are far or the illumination is bad. Owing to these algorithms the player can, for example, quietly pass behind patrol's backs, hide in ill-lit areas of the premises or carry out distractive manoeuvres.

There is a system of aimed hitting in the game. So, a hit into the soldier's body, protected by armour results in minor damage, while a head hit inflicts substantial injuries. Apart from affection zones, each rival has vulnerable spots, which result in maximum damage and sometimes, in instantaneous death. Besides, various kinds of armour secure different protection from this or that sort of damage, as bullets, explosions or chemical influence. The sound of the game has been thoroughly worked out. On each of the levels players will be surrounded by much of background noise, helping to create the presence effect. Everything that should make sounds makes them.

The multiplayer mode supports up to 16 players over LAN or the Internet. A multi-user game will include such modes as capture the flag, cooperative single mission, the teammate controlled by other players, as well as black box and capture the crystal team-play modes.

The game engine is based on modern technologies and supports the features of the latest accelerator generation. Any D3D-compatible accelerator will fit for the game. The engine perfectly copes as with open, so as with closed spaces. Among the implemented features are dynamic colour illumination, directional sources of light, procedure textures, mirror and chrome surfaces, volumetric fog, realistic water surfaces, multitude of trick effects, including usage of particle system and many more. Owing to model-simplifying-with-the-distance technology, the quantity of polygons has been much increased. So, the models of enemies and the ones led include up to 1000 polygons. The character animation is done separately for upper and lower part, allowing getting smooth and natural movements. The game has 3-dimentional sound - A3D, as well as EAX cards are supported.

Key Features

  • 3D action shooter with all the attributes of a classic action-arcade game, including tactic action, stealth action
  • Possibility of stealthy movements, sniper shooting and sudden attacks
  • Multitude of equipment with a kit selection possibility
  • Improvable and thoroughly worked out soldiers' parameters, possibility of being promoted in service
  • The player controls two soldiers, handy command system for the team mate
  • View from the first as well as from the third person
  • Levels combining open and closed spaces
  • Possibility of choosing time of the day for the mission
  • High interactivity and level detailing
  • Hit processing algorithm, various kinds of injuries and armour
  • High artificial intelligence of the rivals
  • Work with any D3D-compatible accelerator
  • Dynamic colour illumination, directional sources of light
  • Smooth and realistic animation of characters
  • Realistic water surfaces
  • 3-dimensional rich sound - EAX and A3D
  • Multiplayer in cooperative, capture the flag, black box and capture the crystal modes

Posted: 12:25:06 Wednesday, 12 December 2001

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