Latest version feature list (still growing…)

The latest version currently still under development has the following new features already completed:-

Jan 30, 2015

  • Added new in-game fire object with procedural animation
  • Added post processing effect: Light scattering or “God rays”
  • Added grass effects in forests and on plains
  • Added terrain to shadow map (but quite an expensive effect!)
  • Finalised main menu screen with audio and fire effect
  • Finalised post processing effect: Depth-of-field
  • Adjusted terrain height map to give some more variation in certain places
  • Full screen support is now more solid and random crashes have stopped
  • Increased the resolution of some engine textures for better 1920 x 1080 HD quality
  • Finalised strategy to in-game handling of music and effects using FMod Studio Sound System

May 31, 2014

  • Assets are now loaded in a separate thread to enable more effective startup sequence
  • New loading screen based on high level map view of midnight
  • Tightened up campaign name selection to avoid overwriting duplicate existing campaign data
  • Fixed a couple of nasty bugs which were causing memory leaks (with help from WinDbg!)
  • Fixed errors in dynamic vertex buffer locking which have been there from the early days
  • Improved transition from current scene colouring to fogged scene colouring in proximity to the tower of doom
  • Improved lighting of snowflakes – they now glimmer in the moonlight at night
  • Splitted out the Log Viewer into a separate app, which can be run alongside the game in windowed mode for battle statistics analysis
  • Integration of FMod Studio Sound System library in preparation for further audio content
  • Upgraded engine to June 2010 version of the DirectX9 SDK

Dec 27, 2012

  • Removal of TME library dependency (due to further development on the library being abandoned)
  • Adjusted main scene colours and font colours to be more in line with the original ZXSpectrum version
  • Replaced main game font
  • Reduced the default draw distance to 6 (same as the original) – the new shader techniques allow this to look acceptable now
  • Addition of debug overlay for ongoing development support
  • Addition of new layouts ready for DDR support
  • Addition of depth-of-field to main view, distant objects get progressively out of focus
  • Addition of volumetric mist algorithm ready for DDR support
  • Addition of volumetric lighting algorithm
  • Addition of media playback module for DX9 builds – capable of playing .avi and .mp3 files amongst others
  • Finished feature to fade out banners and flags beyond a fixed distance, they now fade to generic type banners
  • Fixed bug causing “choppy” sound effects – DirectSound didn’t like the buffer volume/pan being adjusted every game scan
  • Recoded map explorer screen, now using main rendering methods
  • Recoded moon rendering, the part in shadow now fades into the background, as you see in reality
  • Recoded star system handling and rendering efficiency
  • Recoded snow handling and rendering efficiency
  • Recoded water representation for lakes and seas
  • Recoded terrain rendering to be more efficient (baked terrain transitions into pre-loaded texture map)
  • Recoded lighting algorithms – eg introduction of per-pixel lighting
  • Recoded all in game menus based on DXUT GUI format (no GDI menus required any more)
  • Recoded all fixed function pipeline rendering methods to use shaders requiring SM3.0 support
  • Recoded all text handling to UNICODE format, to be compatible with the DXUT Extension libraries
  • Simplified the calling structure to a lot of functions within the game engine
  • Underlying DirectX integration recoded based on latest SDK framework (has simplified the integration considerably)
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26 Responses to Latest version feature list (still growing…)

  1. Feanor says:

    I thought you had given up developing this as nothing had happened for so long. The new demo video looks good. I loved the last version you released so I am looking forward to another one! I have a Mac now though… I might have to install it on my son’s XP laptop instead! πŸ™‚

    Keep up the good work!

  2. Nixcalo says:

    Oh, I am so excited. You know, icemark.com and frozenempire.net were the two sites I turned back from time to time. Even though there hadn’t been any advances in either for years… I kept on coming. Then I saw new developments in icemark.. and then I felt the urge to download a PDF copy of RetroGamer, and reading it, I saw a reference to your webpage. It was the same reference as had been years ago, but something made me, again, type your website address…

    And it’s new! There are some developments! I really loved the engine, played the game, used the Excel-like statistics for battles, tried to defeat Doomdark in many ways… and always lamented the abandonment of Doomdark’s Revenge and the ocassional bugs…

    But let me tell you, I am thrilled, excited and happy.. Again! What a wonderful gift for Xmas! :):):) I want to play the new version, it looks awesome!

  3. Nixcalo says:

    Is this site dead? No developments, no updates, no comments on over 4 months… and I was so eager…

  4. Luxor says:

    Hi, I wish I could meet your eager expectations for further progress and development, however the fact is that there has been no movement since Xmas, basically because I’ve had no spare time for further dev work. I don’t see that changing radically over the next few months either due to work commitments. Check back again from time to time and I’ll post as soon as it looks different…

    • Nixcalo says:

      Well, thank you for your explanations. I fully understand, unfortunately. Good luck with your commitments, then!

  5. Nixcalo says:

    How are your work commitments going? Still busy? I remember one bug in the original implementation, in case you want to check it out. The calculations for casualties and victories were wrong once a game was restored. That is, if you saved a game before a battle, fought the battle and then restored the game to the previous state before the battle, the spreadsheet did not restore the data, however, and considered the battle as being fought, thus modifying the stats by a battle that was never actually fought. Therefore, saving and loading could absolutely destroy your statistics as the data did not return to their previous state along with the game. And you could do this again and again…

    I don’t know if that is an issue of the WOTS or the Midnight engine, I think of the former, but it was something I noticed. I hope this report helps.

  6. Luxor says:

    Hi, thanks for the bug report. I will add it to the to-do list for when I get restarted again. I suddenly got much much busier since the beginning of January, and there is no sign of this easing up at the moment. Not the answer you want I’m sure… but it’s a case of priorities I’m afraid. Thanks for your interest..

  7. walter plews says:

    Hi, LOM and DDR have been a primary gaming experience for me since first bought and played o the Speccy 48k. iwas immediartely “in the story and gameplay. it still has the capacity to throw you a curve,
    The news of Mikes passing was very sad, it felt like losing a cherished friend

    Your worik so far is thereally amazing. PLEASE don’t rop your incrediblt project.

    Thank you for what you’ve done so far.
    buying a Widows 7 PC means I can’t play my LOM and DDrR faves any longer.I almost removediWndows 7 to reinstall XP so I could play the games again. I might very well still do so.

    Please keep up the good work, but forst of all look after yourself.

    highest regards, walt

    • Luxor says:

      Thanks Walter, I appreciate your comments

      The project is not dropped, just stalled until I find a way to create some free time!

  8. walter plews says:

    Hi Luxor, Just letting you know I bought the windows 7 version of Midnight, and it’s marvellous! so good to roam, recruit rescue and fight in the realm again.I read Rothron’s blog that Revenge and Dark Citadel wiil follow as time permits. That’s good nows on top of good news. Hey!! life’s worth living again, thank you for your incredible work and dedication.

    Is there some means whereby I can be informed when they are released?

    I beat the evil Shareth the first time at around 1:00 a.m not long ater getting out of hospital after a difficult and severe operation. I shouted Whoa!!!” so loudly that my wife ran in thinking something awful had happened to me (burst stitches blood gushing , etc.) she was pretty upset when I said in triumph “She’s dead, I thought I’d never get her, but she’s dead.” It’s probably a miracle that I wasn’t struck down on the spot!

    I wish I could have told dear Mike this and how much his brilliance helped me through some very dark times. but we’ll never forget him will we?

    Once again, thank you so much for your work. I can keep my O/S now, ( at least so long as Midnight 2&3 are in the cards. not that it’s important but I’m 74 years old.. but this game frreshes me as I play it

    God bless and keep you, walt

  9. Luxor says:

    Hey Walter,

    Good to know you are up and running again and that LOM helped you through a difficult time.

    I think you must be running Chris’s (Rorthron) new version of LOM. I suggest you keep an eye on the blog that you have referred to already, that will be the first place to hear of any future releases.

    All the best

  10. Petardo says:

    I wonder whether lack of updates means lack of development?? πŸ™

    • Luxor says:

      The wheels continue to turn very slowly, you can see from the recent update to the features list that things are still in progress… I still intend to get an update out later this year.

      Thanks for your interest

  11. Petardo says:

    How is the update going??? I miss the Lords of Midnight world.. and I want to massacre some Doomdark troops :):)

    • Luxor says:

      It’s going… however the summer has been somewhat slower than anticipated.
      I’ve been steadily chipping away at the new improved map explorer, and also getting to grips with FMod in preparation for a more dynamic audio content.
      It looks like I will now likely miss a 2014 release, since I would like the above aspects completed before doing so.
      I hope you can be patient and believe me that the release day will come in due course.
      As they say, good things come to those that wait πŸ™‚

  12. Ilya Novikov says:

    Hello. I am a Lords of Midnight fan from childhood and look forward with anticipation to try a new version of WOTS. It’s a very good idea to create a remake of Mike Singleton games with better graphics. But I truly hope that save/load in next version will be more user friendly. And it would be just wonderful to be able to select lords directly on the map. It also would be good to create a remake of The Eye of the Moon (or adaptation of The Citadel), because original Citadel cannot run under Windows.
    Please don’t take my humble suggestions as insults, and forgive my poor English).

  13. Luxor says:

    Appreciate your interest and feedback on what you feel are areas for improvement.

    I’m not sure in particular what you didn’t like about the save/load in the last version, but you will be pleased to know it is completely different in this version. That doesn’t mean you will necessarily like it though!

    Selecting lords on the map is an interesting idea, I’ll add it to the “todo” list.

    I’m still chipping away at it on a weekly basis – in a few weeks time I’ll give more detail on what progress has been made recently.

  14. Ilya Novikov says:

    Thank you very much for your answer). In my personal opinion, selection of lords directly on the map is very useful feature for Lords of Midnight and absolutly “must have” feature for Doomdark’s Revenge. I also thought about some other improvements.:) I think it would be good to add to a Lords of Midnight game a few rare Fey artifacts – Heartstones, which can partially protect lord who carrying it from ice fear (heartstones are invention of Mike Singleton, of course, but protection against ice fear is my assumption:)). Heartstones are less powerful than the Moon Ring, and one Heartstone can protect only one commander at a time. One Heartstone could be in posession of Corleth the Fey and few others could be hidden in different places in game (perhaps Lorgrim the Wise could also have one). And it also would be useful to add option of giving item to other lord in the same location (not to Luxor and not to Morkin if he is carrying an Ice Crown). The Moon Ring and The Ice Crown cannot be given, of course. And if the lord to whom first lord give his item already carrying some item, he either will drop it(and it can be picked later) or will give it to first lord in exchange. First variant (dropping an item) is better, I think.

    • Luxor says:

      Thanks.. some good ideas. I like your idea of heartstones…

      I would like to say however that WOTS was always intended to be a faithful remake of the original. There are so many ways in which it could be extended, adapted, tweaked etc. Perhaps at some point in the future I will consider to implement some additional “non-standard” features, so I’ll keep your suggestions in mind.

      However for the moment I’m fully focussed on bringing the existing gameplay and scope into an up to date user experience (for which your suggestion of selecting lords from the map is more in line with the above).

      Thanks again

  15. Ilya Novikov says:

    I also think that in Doomdark’s Revenge lord with an army shouldnt be able to be killed by some nasty mobs(skulcrins, wolves, trolls, or dragons). Furthermore, I think that of all mobs only dragons could do some damage to the army. Please don’t take my humble suggestions as an insult. πŸ™‚

  16. Nixcalo says:

    Best wishes for 2015!!! :):):

  17. Nixcalo says:

    How about an update? πŸ™‚

  18. Luxor says:

    Yes it’s time; I’m planning to get a few details out about recent progress shortly…

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