New Release: 0 A.D. Alpha 18 Rhododactylos

Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, proudly announces the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 18 Rhododactylos”, the eighteenth alpha version of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. This alpha features improved performance, an in-game technology tree, a new map type (“Nomad”) and more!

Easy Download and Install

Download and installation instructions are available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. 0 A.D. is free of charge and always will be. Although you might find some people selling copies of 0 A.D., either over the internet or on physical media, you will always have the option to download 0 A.D. completely gratis, directly from the developers.

Moreover, you can redistribute the game and modify it freely as long as you abide by the GPL. You can even use parts of the art and sound for your own projects as long as you abide by CC BY-SA. No “freemium” model, no in-game advertising, no catch.

Top New Gameplay Features in This Release

  • Nomad Game Mode: Players start with only some citizen soldiers and female citizens, and no civil center, and must build a base from scratch.
  • In-Game Technology Tree: Allows players to see which faction can research what technologies, when and for how many resources.
  • The default AI, Petra, now supports saved games.
  • Toggle groups of units between marching in formation and breaking formation.
  • New Seleucid buildings:

The new buildings are the house, storehouse, farmstead, towers and temple. The Civic Center is a placeholder for now and will be updated before the Seleucids are finished.

Performance Improvements and Other Changes Under the Hood

  • SpiderMonkey upgraded to ​v31: The Javascript engine SpiderMonkey has been upgraded to version 31. This greatly improves performance and reduces memory usage a bit. We have also adapted our code to support new and advanced memory management techniques and features of SpiderMonkey such as Exact Stack Rooting, Moving GC and Generational GC. In addition, this version of SpiderMonkey includes a new and improved version of the performance profiling tool called “Tracelogger”, which has helped us identifying and fixing different problems and further improving performance.
  • C++11 upgrade: C++ is the main programming language used for our Engine and we now support the C++11 standard, which was finalized by the ISO committee in 2011. It took a while until the standard was supported well enough by the third party tools we are using, mainly C++ compilers. Last but not least, we dropped support for older C++ compilers in order to move to the new version. As a consequence, we have also been able to remove some workarounds for bugs and missing features in these old compilers. C++11 brings many new and useful features our programmers can use and it was a requirement for the SpiderMonkey 31 upgrade.
  • More Efficient Fogging and Visibility Calculations: These calculations keep track of what each player knows about all objects in the world. For example, you might see a tree with half of its resources remaining in the Fog of War. Another player might have more recent information because of scouting and knows that this tree has already been collected completely. This kind of information is now stored and processed more efficiently, which improves performance a lot.
  • New Wildfire Games Server: The new Wildfire Games server hosts different services such as the multiplayer lobby, our IRC bot, the website and also the newly implemented autobuilder. The autobuilder builds 0 A.D. from source code for artists, players and other people who should not have to build it manually, and can now check itself with automated tests. (The payments for the hosting plan and server license are made possible thanks to our donors!)
  • Selected other improvements: Several AI optimizations, reduced lag when selecting units, and more.

Improvements to the Atlas Editor

  • Right-Click Rotations of Multiple Objects: Normal behavior: Rotate objects in circle, Ctrl+Right-click: Rotate each of the objects individually in place, Shift+Right-click: Keep rotation but move in circle.
  • Atlas now checks for unsaved changes when closing a map.
  • Atlas now shows when objects are placed in invalid locations by highlighting them in red.
  • Show template names of selected objects.
  • Copy and paste added to Edit menu.
  • Numerous bug fixes.

Getting Support

Please see the “Get Support” page on our website to find ways to get help from the active and friendly 0 A.D. community.

We are well aware there is some room for improvement in 0 A.D. Some known issues are: Lag, visual glitches or textures not loaded, missing animations and more. When you provide feedback, we would ask you to focus on some of the other points that could be improved. Thanks.

Please Contribute!

We are seeking volunteer contributors in programming, art, sound, documentation and more. Programmers are especially welcome and can get started immediately.

Interested? Log onto #0ad-dev on QuakeNet on IRC and meet the developers. Also, you are invited to register on our forums and start participating!

Why “Rhododactylos”?

We name our releases according to development status (“Alpha” or “Beta”), successive release number (1, 2, 3, …) and a word relating to the ancient world, in alphabetical order (“Argonaut” for A, “Bellerophon” for B, …).

“Rhododactylos” means “rosy fingered” in Greek and is one of the poetical epithets of Eos, the ancient Greek goddess of the dawn. According to the legend, she would rise every morning from her home at the edge of the ocean and open the gates of heaven for the sun to rise with her “rosy fingers” or “rosy forearms”. (Thanks, ltms!)

For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter S. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!

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