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    • Developer Briefing #84 - TPP Animation Overhaul, Audio redesign & U7 Date! New animations, new SFX and a date! Hey everyone, Welcome to Developer Briefing #84! This week we're very excited to share with you not only the TPP Animation Overhaul but now also details on our audio redesign, which includes a full sweep of all firearms in the game! We've also received a priority message from HQ with a release date for Update 7...   Update 7 Release Date! We are excited to let you know that we will be releasing Update 7 on Tuesday the 14th of July at approximately 11am BST / 12pm CEST / 6am ET / 3am PT. We want to thank the entire community for your support and patience, and we can’t wait to see you on the frontline!   TPP (Third Person Perspective) Animations - First Look! The best way to check out the new look TPP Animations will be in game next week, but we wanted to give you a sneak peak to let you know what to expect in the next update. TPP Details Upper body and lower body is now procedural This system is going to be foundational, and we can now create unique elements in it (procedural aspects such as idle animations of a character smoking, or mixed varieties of sprints and walks) We will take this further, but focused on FPP first due to it influencing the entire feel of the gunplay We would need to spend hours showing you all of the new animations, but with the new update just around the corner our time is best spent making sure we get this out to you asap. Check out the introductory TPP video below!   We will continue to smooth out and bug fix all animations following Update 7. If you missed the FPP Animation showcase last week you can check it out below     Images from the Mocap sessions Take a look behind the scenes at how we created the new animations!   Audio/SFX Redesign - First Listen!   Weapons If you’ve followed Hell Let Loose for any significant time you’ll know that we’ve undergone a long process of upgrading the systems and the sound engine that lie behind all the sound effects and treatment in the game. Update 7 will introduce some of the first fruits of these massive back-end upgrades, with a particular focus on an overhaul to every single firearm within the game - when heard from both the first person perspective, as well as at close, medium and distant ranges. When returning to overhaul the weapons, we spent large amounts of time looking for a sound treatment that the community would enjoy. Unanimously, feedback on our work-in-progress sounds currently in the game was that they lacked satisfactory “punch” - due to the fact that up until this point the current sounds were very dominant in the upper frequencies.   Environment Specific In order to remedy this, we’ve built an extensive library of high quality recordings in order to work as the toolbox in the redesign of the weapon sounds. Instead of relying on single assets (ie. mp40_shotsound_01) to convey the gunfire sound - like our animation system - the new sound design is procedural and is composed of many different elements of a single gunshot (bass, high-end frequencies and so on). This means that each weapon feels contextually correct (you can now far more accurately estimate the calibre of weapon type from range, as they are all sorted per calibre). In addition to tackling the specific weapon sounds, we’ve also begun marking up exterior areas. Essentially, this allows for us to dynamically alter the weapon sounds according to the environment in which they’re fired. What you’ll experience in Update 7 is the first iteration of our Open Field, Urban and Forest weapon treatments. With later updates we’ll be applying similar treatments to the interiors of all types of buildings currently in the game. Adam, our audio designer, has quickly captured some of the above mentioned for you in this DEV WIP video. Have a listen!     Automatic Weapon Rework The method to which we trigger automatic weapons has also finally undergone a re-work. The old method would see us triggering a sound every time a bullet was fired from the weapon. While this is accurate, it also resulted in the audio being very obviously tied to frame rate. As a result, many players would report that numerous weapons weren’t matching their real-life rates-of-fire, and at worst - poor frames-per-second would induce a stutter effect (especially on weapons like the MG42). Fortunately, we’ve now switched to a looping method - where the sound and visuals are disconnected from your frame rate. You’ll notice that no matter the framerate, your audio should be consistent and smooth. Weapon animation sounds have also been redesigned and in future we will improve on how the weapon movement sound is reflected as the player moves around and interacts with the environment. We will also be reworking footsteps, sounds to indicate stance changes, vaulting and mantling sounds and every other aspect of audio in the game.   Vehicles We’re continually working on both the technology, assets and mix behind the way we handle vehicle audio. This coming update has seen the inclusion of sound mix modifiers which reduce the volume and high frequencies of exterior sounds when the crew are inside the vehicle. The volume of Interior and Exterior vehicle sounds have been reduced to better aid with mixing and also crew communications when inside the vehicles. We have also removed a bug that would ramp up the vehicles volume when traversing up terrain. For reference we are aiming to design the vehicle experience around the historical accounts of crewmen during the war, gameplay functionality and also take inspiration from films and media such as ‘Lebanon’, ‘Battle of tank T-34’, and of course ‘Fury’. These vehicles became home for the men who crewed them, and we’re excited to continue improving all sound aspects of these into the future.   Audio Channels An Audio Channel Voice Count option has been added to the Audio Option Menu. This setting allows user control over how many audio channels are used up at one time. A mono sound file uses one channel of audio and a stereo file uses two channels of audio. Up until this update we had a limitation of 32 audio channels playing at once and in some cases one weapon fired in TPP would use up to 12 channels of audio, now weapons never use more than 5 for the core sounds. Currently, the game consists of an equal mix of mono to stereo files, but to aid in better pinpointing the location of certain sounds we aim to replace some stereo files with mono files in future. Option in Audio option menu (Default is set to EPIC) We would advise players to adjust these settings to suit their own preference and PC specs. LOW = 32 Channels MEDIUM = 64 Channels HIGH = 96 Channel EPIC = 128 Channels   Additional changes Footstep volume slightly increased. Rocket fly by sound added to Panzerschreck and Bazooka Projectiles. Sound mix modifier additions applying volume and EQ ducking to weapon firing, explosions and when the player is underwater. Fuse sound added to german grenades. A few additions of foley to certain animations (Throwing Grenades, Vaulting, Weapon equipping). Vehicle internal MG reflection sound. Volume radius increased to AT impact sounds on vehicles. New Bullet Fly By sounds. In Future we will add sounds for subsonic rounds.   Future Audio Looking towards the future, we’re going to be tackling the following: Explosion Overhaul We have now begun working on explosion and heavy weapon sounds (grenades, rockets, mines, tank rounds, artillery etc.). Like the firearms, these too will be modified by the environment in which they occur. We will take a modular approach to the explosion sounds by layering and randomising sounds to play based on the size of the explosion ie. small, medium or large and also where that explosion occurs. Ambience Overhaul With the focus and attention being given to the more prominent sounds, we’ll also be addressing the per-map ambience. While not as important as the weapon or explosions, ambience is essential in building out the game world and immersing you as a player - from wildlife to wind, to the quiet creak of idle machinery. As our latest maps have been released we have been testing ways to randomise ambient sounds with the inclusion of wildlife ambient spawners in Purple Heart Lane and Hill 400. Foley overhaul Foley is another area we identify that has lacked attention but is one we are excited to improve. Whilst ambience brings life to the world, the foley soundscape is crucial for reflecting your interactions within the world - whether it be leaping a wall, adjusting your stance or changing a barrel. We have ideas to improve and add additional footsteps, the sound of the gear worn, the interaction of the weapon by the player and much more. Engine Features new and continued Mixing Occlusion Reverb (Potentially) Listener Focus Naturally, we'll continue to work on improvements and tweak for all weapon sounds.   See you in Carentan That wraps up this week's Dev Brief! We hope you liked what you saw and look forward to hearing your feedback on our new animations and audio, both now and once you've got stuck into Update 7 next week. You deploy to Carentan July 14th. See you on the frontline.  
    • Hey everyone, Welcome to Developer Briefing #83! Before we get stuck in we'd just like to say welcome to the new players that have joined us recently in the Steam Sale, we hope you're having a great time with Hell Let Loose - you've joined the frontline at a very exciting time for us. This brings me on to today's Dev Brief, the First Person Perspective (FPP) Animation Overhaul Reveal! Thanks again for everyone's patience whilst we prepared for this moment. To give you an in-depth look at what's coming in the near future Max and Spono have put together a walkthrough video for your viewing pleasure. Over to you Max!   The Animation Overhaul: FPP Edition - Words from Max Hi everyone, Initially we weren’t quite sure how best to show you what we’ve been working on today, to fully explain all the changes under the hood - and then how it feels to play - would take the better part of a day. Finally we settled on putting this video together in an effort to describe what you can expect in Update 7. In watching it, we realised we missed talking about several huge additional new features and changes. We’re going to try and produce another video next week to describe everything we missed, as well as dive into the TPP side of things too! What you’re seeing today has been the product of months and months of work from our incredible animation team. Rick, Jacob, Niko, Roman and James have all done huge amounts of work and re-work to deliver the system you’ll see in the video. Like the ballistics system, it’s not something you’d usually do with a live game, and to manage to integrate this, as well as optimise it has been nothing short of an Herculean effort. From all of us here at Black Matter, we’re so excited to let you get your (photoreal) hands on it so that you can truly experience it. Finally, we want to apologise for our delay in releasing Update 7. Many issues arose that we felt could compromise the introduction of the new system, and so we decided that several weeks more worth of QA testing would be the best strategy for ensuring the best experience possible. That said, we failed to properly communicate that, and as such we’ll be making larger efforts in the future towards transparency. We'll have news on a firm release date for you in the rather near future. We want to remind everyone that Hell Let Loose is still in Early Access. We still have a huge amount of optimisation to do, as well as continual bug fixes and the introduction of more content. We continually read feedback given to us across our channels - please keep contributing, as it’s very valuable for us as a team - Thank You! Enjoy the video:     Next Week: Animation Overhaul: TPP Edition! That wraps up this week's Developer Briefing! We'd love to hear what you think of the FPP Animation Overhaul that we shared today, so let us know in the comments and over on the forums. As always, thank you so much for your continued support - you, the community are the heart of Hell Let Loose! We look forward to taking you through the Third Person Animation Overhaul next week. If you liked what you've seen today and are yet to join the battle, Hell Let Loose is currently 25% off in the Steam Summer Sale: https://store.steampowered.com/app/686810/Hell_Let_Loose/ See you on the frontline! View the full article
    • Hey everyone, Welcome to Developer Briefing #83! Before we get stuck in we'd just like to say welcome to the new players that have joined us recently in the Steam Sale, we hope you're having a great time with Hell Let Loose - you've joined the frontline at a very exciting time for us. This brings me on to today's Dev Brief, the First Person Perspective (FPP) Animation Overhaul Reveal! Thanks again for everyone's patience whilst we prepared for this moment. To give you an in-depth look at what's coming in the near future Max and Spono have put together a walkthrough video for your viewing pleasure. Over to you Max! The Animation Overhaul: FPP Edition - Words from Max Hi everyone, Initially we weren’t quite sure how best to show you what we’ve been working on today, to fully explain all the changes under the hood - and then how it feels to play - would take the better part of a day. Finally we settled on putting this video together in an effort to describe what you can expect in Update 7. In watching it, we realised we missed talking about several huge additional new features and changes. We’re going to try and produce another video next week to describe everything we missed, as well as dive into the TPP side of things too! What you’re seeing today has been the product of months and months of work from our incredible animation team. Rick, Jacob, Niko, Roman and James have all done huge amounts of work and re-work to deliver the system you’ll see in the video. Like the ballistics system, it’s not something you’d usually do with a live game, and to manage to integrate this, as well as optimise it has been nothing short of an Herculean effort. From all of us here at Black Matter, we’re so excited to let you get your (photoreal) hands on it so that you can truly experience it. Finally, we want to apologise for our delay in releasing Update 7. Many issues arose that we felt could compromise the introduction of the new system, and so we decided that several weeks more worth of QA testing would be the best strategy for ensuring the best experience possible. That said, we failed to properly communicate that, and as such we’ll be making larger efforts in the future towards transparency. We'll have news on a firm release date for you in the rather near future. We want to remind everyone that Hell Let Loose is still in Early Access. We still have a huge amount of optimisation to do, as well as continual bug fixes and the introduction of more content. We continually read feedback given to us across our channels - please keep contributing, as it’s very valuable for us as a team - Thank You! Enjoy the video: Next Week: Animation Overhaul: TPP Edition! That wraps up this week's Developer Briefing! We'd love to hear what you think of the FPP Animation Overhaul that we shared today, so let us know in the comments and over on the forums. As always, thank you so much for your continued support - you, the community are the heart of Hell Let Loose! We look forward to taking you through the Third Person Animation Overhaul next week. If you liked what you've seen today and are yet to join the battle, Hell Let Loose is currently 25% off in the Steam Summer Sale: https://store.steampowered.com/app/686810/Hell_Let_Loose/ See you on the frontline! View the full article
    • Developer Briefing #82 - Carentan!  Say hello to Carentan, your next frontline in Hell Let Loose!  Full scale urban combat Accurate map recreation Iconic locations Fight street to street, room to room. See more https://bit.ly/DevBrief82   See previous Dev Briefings here: https://steamcommunity.com/app/686810/allnews
    • Hey everyone, Welcome to Developer Briefing #82! This week we're starting to formally reveal and go into detail on some of the content you'll be diving into when Update 7 drops in the near future. This week, Lead Developer Max is taking you on an introduction to the next map coming to Hell Let Loose... Carentan! Introducing Carentan Hi everyone, Max here! For a long time we’ve wanted to put together a proper urban map that took the more open-field combat of Hell Let Loose and placed it in a dense, built-up environment. To do that effectively and in a way that captured both the best of gameplay and the best visuals relied on us building up a huge asset library that would allow us to curate gameplay, as well as create a convincing urban landscape. We’re incredibly proud to finally reveal that our next map will be Carentan - coming in Update 7 alongside our animation overhaul and many, many other additions. Carentan is very different to every Hell Let Loose map you’ve played before. We studied all the feedback from Sainte-Mère-Église (our urban test-run). From this we boiled down key elements that made up great urban warfare and then set about building a pipeline that would allow us to deliver this in an optimised way. Carentan is hugely iconic - first made so by Band of Brothers, and then by the countless iterations of the location in games - starting of course with Call of Duty 1. We wanted - in typical Hell Let Loose fashion - to recreate the town exactly and lay it out in a way that enables you to fight the battle at the scale of the real-life engagement. All the most iconic locations are present, but in their own location. You’ll be able to fight from the Cafe Desire Ingouf and the Cafe De Normandie, through the train station and all the way to the Arcades of the Place de la République before crossing the canal locks into the countryside. As you can see from the tactical map below, the key to Carentan is owning and protecting the bridges crossing the canals to the north, as well as the four main thoroughfares through the town itself. The town is huge - easily the largest playable urban landscape that we’ve ever attempted. Building a photoreal town from to-scale reference is no easy feat - and to achieve that we’ve taken the liberty of closing off many of the 2000+ gardens that lay nestled behind the street fronts. Like the battle itself, we wanted to consolidate the combat to the streets, squares and houses. As such, we’ve curated key locations and access points as happened in the real battle. We’ve tested player density considerably and are confident in the brutal street-to-street and house-to-house fighting. We’ve changed much of our level design ethos and systems in the last six months. We’ll explain this far deeper in it’s own Dev Brief, but you’ll notice that Carentan has a much higher level of consistent detail in every location. Beyond the town itself are the low lying flooded fields, the outlying farmhouses and the Mont Halais position - a hilltop flak position that overlooks the train station. We’re starting to prepare for the launch of Update 7 in the coming weeks and the coming dev briefs are going to contain some of the biggest changes to the game that we’ve ever made. ‘Caption This’ Competition by MoscaTnT - The Winners Thanks for all of your submissions to the recent HLL subreddit competition that was run by our very talented community illustrator MoscaTnT. We were very taken back by the response from the community and we will be sure to do more of these or similar comps in the near future! So if you haven’t done so yet, make sure to follow the subreddit for all the glorious future content! If you would like to check out the other submitted captions here is the link The Winners We decided to give an extra key away, as the judges were torn because there were so many good captions! 1st Game Key goes to _SGP_ For: 2nd Game Key goes to PANZERmx For: *Drumroll* And the winner of a Custom Designed Avatar from Art creator MoscaTnT and Game Key goes to Uomodelmonte86 For: The prize in all its glory: Steam Summer Sale 25% Discount & Next Week's Developer Brief! Prepare for Carentan, grow your unit, join the battle right now in the Steam Summer Sale with a 25% discount: https://store.steampowered.com/app/686810/Hell_Let_Loose/ The battle for Carentan draws near. Be ready for battle. Now, about Dev Brief #83... We can confirm that next week's Brief will be on the Animation Overhaul! You've all been very patient, thank you. We're incredibly excited to finally share this game changing overhaul with you. To tide you over until then, we've got a screenshot for you... See you on the frontline. View the full article
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