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Uber Arena - A New WIP Mod For Quake III Arena
Hello arena gladiators,

I'm incredibly excited to announce my new Quake III Arena mod, Uber Arena. I've been working on this on-and-off for a while as a hobby project to practice software programming in a familiar context outside of just writing boring console programs. I'm now in university taking classes for computer science with the hopes of eventually finding some good-paying programming jobs, but while I definitely have more serious aspirations in the realm of software engineering, that certainly doesn't mean I can't have a little bit of fun building some personal projects for my favorite games. I really enjoy the feeling of finally solving tough problems, which this mod has offered plenty of (and still has a few yet to be taken care of), but it has undeniably been very educational as well. And with Quake 3's 20th anniversary coming up next year, I suppose now is a good time as any to get started if you're going to be modding for such an old game, hehe :p

As for the mod itself, Uber Arena is not a total conversion or major overhaul of Quake 3, but rather is a collection of new game mechanics and items that extend the base game experience in a manner that attempts to remain true to Quake's core principles such as on-spawn equality. There are no abilities, loadouts, or similar concepts that would cause players to spawn with different setups. Just as with the original game, item control and positioning are absolutely key to being successful. The specific methods employed will be radically different, but the overall fundamentals are unchanged. I tried to come up with some interesting ideas that most arena FPS games, or perhaps FPS games in general, do not consider.

Uber Arena has the following features:
- 5 new and/or modified game mechanics
- 3 new power-ups
- 2 new holdable items
- 3 miscellaneous items (2 of which use a modified backpack model / skin made by DaEngineer)
- 1 new map-specific mechanic
- 3 remixes of older maps to test the new mechanics, including 2 revisions of classic id software
Quake 3 maps and 1 user-made map by community designer Tigger-On, used with permission.

See the documentation provided in the link below for more information about the new features included in Uber Arena:

This mod is, as you might expect, very VERY work-in-progress - particularly visual / stylistic effects. Right now I am more concerned about functionality and bug fixing though.

Some known bugs that I'm still working to get ironed out:
- Item knockback doesn't interact well with items on movers.
- Trampolines occasionally send you bouncing much higher than you should. This behavior is rare and I haven't been able to consistently reproduce it; it seems very RNG-ish.

Also keep in mind that bots haven't been optimized for the mod yet at all. I need to do some more research on modifying Quake 3 bot code for mods. I have a feeling that bots will never be able to learn to use trampolines very well (at least not without an entirely new .aas compiler, which is way beyond my level of knowledge), but I can imagine the other mechanics being workable.

Also if you have some older custom maps that you think would work great with some of the new items - particularly trampolines - feel free to share! I'd love to see what you come up with.

I'm particularly interested in what the func_msgboard community has to say, since I know many people here have much detailed knowledge and commentary to provide. Positive and negative feedback alike is appreciated - I just enjoy reading detailed discussions. :)

- Do you think any of these concepts would have competitive viability? Would they add a new layer of strategy in your opinion? Do you feel that they stay true to the spirit of Quake? What are the reasons for your answers?

- Do you feel one or more of these concepts should be explored further in other arena FPS games?

- Would you have preferred a Quake game based around one of these game mechanics - uberweapons, weapon limits, item knockback, etc. - as opposed to abilities and champions?

DOWNLOAD (Version 0.1):

Have fun and enjoy - I'm really looking forward to seeing what your thoughts are!
Heads up!

There is now a video overview of all the new items / game mechanics featured in Uber Arena: 
Can't Wait For Lyft Tournament 4. 
This looks great. You've clearly done a ton of work and the docs are appreciated. I will download and get back to you with some feedback after work tonight. GG 
Generally Very WIPs Would Be Good In The Betas Thread. 
Wouldn't Something Like This Get Lost In The Betas Thread, Though? 
I'd argue it makes sense for a mod like this to have its own thread, similar to how Qmaster's mod has its own thread. I mean, it's a really ambitious and more long-term project than e.g. a quake map or model. Just my two cents.

@Em3raldTiger, I watched the Youtube video, and this looks very impressive. I was skeptical at first, but once I saw the souped-up weapons mechanic, it all clicked for me. Unfortunately I don't really play multiplayer at all, so I can't provide much in the way of constructive feedback -- but if/when you manage to sort out bot support, I'd be keen to try it. In principle it looks like fun and obviously a lot of thought went into it. Looking forward to seeing how this develops further.

Also, although I'm (like many here, I guess) really more of a Quake fan and not that much into Q3A, it's still really great to see someone creating something new for Q3A. 
Thanks so much for your feedback so far! It's great to see that there's still enthusiasm for the modding scene. Reading comments and reactions, both good and bad, is always enjoyable and keeps me motivated.

Unfortunately I just ran into an issue with compiling my .vms. When I compile and run the game using the .dll's all three components (game, cgame, and ui) work fine. When I compile the .vms, changes in game show up, but modifications to cgame don't appear at all. I have my mod directory set to read .vm's, and it reflects all of my older cgame modifications (like the trampoline bounce sound, or the weapon limit counter), but my newest ones are not showing up at all.

For instance, I've coded in a visual effect for players holding uberweapons (suggested by Tigger-On and dumptruck_ds) to help other players identify them, which of course was coded in cgame. Shows up fine with the .dll's. But when I compile the cgame vm, it's like I never made any changes. But even stranger is that the game (not cgame) vm compiles just fine and reflects my changes there. I don't remember changing any settings whatsoever that could've caused this - I'm saving the vm's to the same directory and I have not modified the batch files since setting them up properly. I check the compile log for the cgame .vm and it doesn't give me any errors; it claims the compile is successful. If someone who has had this issue before could shed some light, it would be greatly appreciated. 
Sorry for the delay I got busy in RL. Finally fired this up this evening after work. One issue right away I have is that none of the new custom sounds will play for me. I am using the stock quake3.exe

Here's the error:

sound/items/pouch.wav is a stereo wav file
WARNING: could not find sound/items/pouch.wav - using default
Use Io Quake 3 Dumb Ass 
Thread title sez "Mod For Quake III Arena"

Does not say "Mod For IoQuake3".

If only mod for IoQuake3 then maker should change description of mod if it won't work with what it say it work with. 
Standard for what?

Quake Live killed off Quake III Arena a decade ago because Quake Live is Quake III Arena with a player base and on Steam.

There is absolutely no one playing Quake III Arena and there has not been for a very, very long time.

So don't be shocked when someone is unfamiliar with modifications to Quake III Arena.

For a "know it all" that calls other people names, you seem to not have a solid grasp of the lay of the land. 
@anonymous Coward (#8) 
Why the fuck and how the fuck would someone know to use ioquake if that's not what the docs say?

I've never downloaded ioquake. Never needed to. Q3A works fine or Live. 
Welp nothing like a refreshing round of anonymous shitposting.

Anyway... FYI for various folks, yes ioquake3 has been sort of the "Fitzquake of Quake 3" for a while now. It's what I've always used, although I think the kids these days (especially CPMA players) will instead use ChallengeQuake3 (CNQ3) or Quake3e. (Which I think are both based on ioquake3.)

Probably the issue here is that ioquake3 supports stereo wav files and vanilla Q3 does not. If the sound files don't need to be in stereo then they might as well be mono-fied to support people using original Q3. 
Yeah, I can take the blame for this one. I forgot that standard Quake 3 doesn't have stereo support and I was testing in ioquake3 because I've been so used to using it by the time I started on this mod. The mod is indeed intended for use with both vanilla and ioquake3; I just didn't test it properly (i.e. on vanilla quake 3), so that is my fault.

Thanks for bringing this issue to my attention dumptruck_ds. All custom stereo-format sounds will be replaced with mono versions in the next release. 
Fitzquake Of Quake 3 
For Q3A there's been very little reason to need an alternate source port. It's worked on every computer I've ever run since 1999. Every map and mod I've played has worked as well I took one look at ioquake3 a while back and wasn't quite sure what the hell it did or "fixed."

For anyone who is curious here's a list:

Ports to new platforms
Off-server data downloads (http redirection) via HTTP and FTP with cURL
OpenAL sound rendering allowing for surround (5.1 and 7.1) speaker layouts and generally improved sound
quality. Especially on the Windows Vista Operating System.
Ogg Vorbis audio decoding.
In-engine VOIP support, with optional Mumble player-location support.
IPV6 Networking. We’re ready to frag on the net of the future!
SDL backend for the OpenGL context, window management, and input. This also improves portability.
Anaglyph stereo rendering (for viewing with 3D glasses)
Full x86-64 architecture support
Rewritten PowerPC JIT compiler, with ppc64 support
Compilation with MinGW and cross-compilation for Windows for Linux
Improved console command auto-completion
Persistent console command history
Improved QVM (Quake Virtual Machine) tools
Colored terminal output on POSIX operating systems
GUID System
Multiuser support on Windows systems (user-specific game data is stored in their respective Application Data folders)
PNG format support for textures
Numerous security fixes 
Now on GitHub!

Also, here's some commentary / feedback for anyone who's interested:

- The uberweapon mechanic was inspired by a mechanic from the Dissolution of Eternity mission pack for the original Quake. Instead of featuring all-new weapons, the mission pack introduced alternate ammo types for existing weapons that made them more powerful; the Multi-Grenade Launcher being the most blatant example. Of course, the alternate ammo idea was scrapped in favor of the 3 regular weapons --> 1 uberweapon idea, which I feel is more elegant since it requires no new items; only using ones that already exist.

- The Toxic Railgun's effect of reducing player health to 1 if it doesn't frag was inspired by Half Life 2's Poison Headcrab.

- Item Knockback is basically a generic version of the Airfist weapon from Painkeep, a mod for Quake (and later Quake 3) by Team Evolve.

- The Conservation power-up's effect of giving the player infinite ammo was actually one of my first ideas for a mod ever, as it was very simple but also something that Quake never really touched upon (apart from Team Arena's Ammo Regen, which got changed to Armor Regen in Quake Live). I later realized why though: The Quad Damage effectively already conserves ammo, since obviously if you do more damage per shot you don't have to use up as much ammo to frag someone. While Conservation gives truly infinite ammo, it takes longer to frag someone than with Quad. Then I realized the Haste power-up would also be a weaker Quad if it didn't have its speed boost effect. Like Quad, Haste lets you frag enemies faster, but it doesn't conserve your ammo since you eat through it just as fast. Haste has a reason for existing because of its secondary ability to make the player run faster. Thus I decided to give the Conservation its own secondary ability, and tied it to one of the main game mechanics of Uber Arena - weapon limits.

There is a really cool mechanical duality, then, between the Haste and Conservation power-ups in relation to the Quad, summarized here:

Quad: Frags enemies faster and conserves ammo.
Haste: Frags enemies faster, does not conserve ammo. Compensates by increasing running speed.
Conservation: Conserves ammo, does not frag enemies faster. Compensates by removing weapon limits.

- The Rampage power-up's initial / working name was Deathstroke, after the DC character.

- The Scavenger power-up's model is supposed to resemble a horn of plenty / cornucopia. It has dual symbolism: the first interpretation is that the player is "scavenging" for items using their weapons, and as a result will be collecting more items than they usually would, hence the horn of "plenty". It could also be interpreted as a traditional viking horn, and that players are using divine magic to "call forth" items towards them using the horn.

- The two colors used for the two new holdable items - green and blue - when considered alongside the holdable items from the original game and Team Arena, complete the set of additive and subtractive primary colors (RGB / CMY):

Personal Teleporter: Cyan
Medkit: Red
Invulnerability Sphere: Magenta
Kamikaze: Yellow
Tuning Device: Green
Storage Capsule: Blue

- As described in the manual, the Ammo Crate is supposed to fill a sort of void, as both health and armor have their major items - the Mega Health and Red Armor, respectively - but no such item existed for ammo. Alongside weapon pouches, perhaps there could be interesting new duel item layout setups where a MH or RA is swapped out for an Ammo Crate, resulting in radical new metagames where ammo and weapon management is favored over health and armor domination. (I wouldn't put all three items in a single duel map though, that might be a bit much)

- The trampoline mechanic was inspired by Portal 2's repulsion gel, though unlike the Portal 2 mechanic, the trampoline doesn't give an initial minimum vertical boost. I liked the idea of trampolines as it fits Quake's existing movement mechanics and flow really well without feeling too gimmicky or out-of-place. The fact that the player gets an additional vertical boost from their forward and sideways velocities not only increases its usability and versatility in maps, but also gives it a nice mechanical consistency with standard strafe jumping. 
Version 0.2 is in the works, and while it's still cooking I whipped up another video demonstrating all the cool trick jumps you can perform with trampolines:

The above video was taken in version 0.2 which includes three new map revisions. Permission has been obtained from all authors before using their maps, and all have been given credit.

Also posted this mod on the r/ArenaFPS Reddit, where I post some of the gameplay theories behind the various mechanics, and I invite people to discuss, debate, and have constructive, in-depth arguments on what works, what doesn't, and why: 
Version 0.2 Released! 



- Added 3 new maps:

- Run Don't Walk (ua_wvwq3dm5)
Original Author: Joel "wviperw" McDonald

- Chaos Citadel (ua_kaos)
Original Author: Dmitry "Vondur" Svetlichny

- Coriolis Effect (ua_lun3dm1)
Original Author: Matthew "Lunaran" Breit

- Added an alternate upgrade for the Arc Lightning Gun for duel mode only. It multiplies the LG's knockback 25 times, allowing for pinning enemies against walls.

- Added Light Armor (gives 25 armor points). The entity name used is identical to the one used by the CPMA mod, which means any maps that use CPMA's light armor will work with Uber Arena as well.

- Conservation now allows players to use weapons that have run out of ammo. In addition, the ammo and weapon pouch counters turn green while Conservation is active.

- Rampage now plays an ambient heartbeat noise while active.

- Ion Plasma Gun now plays its own unique bounce sounds, rather than using the grenade bounce sounds.

- A 3D weapon pouch model now appears next to the weapon pouch counter.

- Renamed Ammo Crate to Super Ammo Crate.

- All sounds converted from stereo to mono, for compatability with standard Quake 3.

- All 2D icons and trampoline surfaces are now unaffected by r_picmip.

- Entire codebase moved to the ioquake3 codebase. Does not affect compatability with standard Quake 3. 
Do Working Open Area ?? 
@anonymous User: OpenArena Compatibility 
Haven't tried it before, but I quickly installed it in OpenArena and tested it out. Seems to work just fine; there will of course be some missing textures on the maps that use stock Q3 assets (that don't have OA replacements), but gameplay-wise it should function identically to Quake 3. 
Uber Arena Trampoline Mapfest 
If any Q3 mappers are interested I set up a "mapjam"-like event for Uber Arena maps over on Quake3World, focused on taking advantage of the trampoline mechanic:

Details here: 
Uber Arena Now Featured On ModDB! 
Recently posted Uber Arena on to ModDB to gather up some more publicity. Little did I know just how much it would actually get though - it has been featured in the September 23rd ModDB Editorial, as well as receiving a mention on the official ModDB Twitter and Facebook accounts!
(Scroll down to the bottom of the post in the "Friday" section)

Needless to say, this is a very exciting honor and I can't thank the good people over at ModDB enough for deciding to feature it. It certainly wouldn't have been possible without the great support of all the people who have tried it out and offered feedback, suggestions, and even development support. If you still haven't checked out Uber Arena, now is definitely a great time to do so! 
Congratulations. Looking forward to playing this new version. 
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