Wildfire Games, an international group of volunteer game developers, proudly announces the release of “0 A.D. Alpha 15 Osiris”, the fifteenth alpha version of 0 A.D., a free, open-source game of ancient warfare. This alpha features a multiplayer lobby, skirmish maps, auras 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
- Multiplayer Lobby: The new in-game multiplayer lobby is a place to meet other players and play games together. Meet the entire 0 A.D. community online and face the challenge of a multiplayer game!
- Auras: Units get a bonus when they are in range of a special building, like a wonder, or another unit, such as a hero. This feature adds a new layer of strategy to the game. So far, in Alpha 15, temples regenerate health for nearby units, and most heroes have auras. This feature is set for expansion and further refinement over the next few alphas.
- Debut of the Ptolemaic Egyptians: Alpha 15 debuts the Ptolemaic Egyptians as a new playable civilization. Some new buildings, units and unique gameplay features can already be tested, but it’s not finished yet and still contains a lot of placeholders. The Ptolemies will be completed in the next alpha releases.
A Ptolemaic Egyptian settlement along the Nile.
- Skirmish Maps: Skirmish maps are a new game mode in 0 A.D. They’re similar to scenarios, but can be easily changed according to your preferences. Like scenarios, these are hand-crafted maps in which the terrain, starting positions and positions of resources on the map remain constant every game. However, unlike scenarios, other aspects can be changed every time you set up a game, like starting resources, factions and teams.Also, in skirmish maps the map creator also placed some generic entities on the map, which will change according to the factions players choose as soon as the game starts, such as generic Civil Centers that will immediately transform into Civil Centers specific to the faction chosen. Skirmish maps are another option available to the player, on top of scenarios and random maps. (Try the first skirmish map, “Alpine Valleys”, bundled with Alpha 15!)
The Alpine Valleys skirmish map.
- Escort / Guard Order: You can now order your troops to protect other units or buildings. When the guarded unit is attacked, whoever is guarding it will come to help, either by attacking the offender, or by healing or repairing the guarded unit.
- Attack Notification: Whenever you’re attacked, you’ll hear a sound and receive a chat message, and the minimap will shows some blinking pixels on the map so you can quickly see where the attack is happening.
- Auto-Garrison Units: When possible, you can ask your newly-produced units to garrison in the production building by setting the rally point in the building itself, using the Ctrl key.
- Automatic Naval Pickup: When units are asked to garrison into a ship, the ship will sail to the shoreline to pick them up.
- “Back to Work” Button: The last civilian task a unit was doing (i.e., gathering, building, trading, …) is remembered when ordering a unit to do some military task (i.e. attack, garrison, …). After you’re done defending yourself from an enemy attack, you can quickly send units back to their previous tasks using the back-to-work button.
New tech icons.
Music and Sound
- Two special tracks have been composed for the Ptolemaic Egyptians: “Valley of the Nile” (feat. Shlomi Nogay on flutes and Jeff Willet on percussion) and “Ammon-Ra” (feat. Jeff Willet) (see YouTube videos below).
- A new generic peace track, “Tavern in the Mist”, contributed by Mike Skalandunas.
- “Celtica” and “Highland Mist” now feature an actual Celtic harp, played by Avital Rom.
- “Eastern Dreams” and “Sands of Time” have been completely remade, and now feature Jeff Willet on percussion.
- “Honor Bound” remixed and remastered.
- New selection sounds.
- Better Unit Movement in Formations: The units in formations run around less, and now know how to get to the closest available place in the formation. This way, the formation is formed faster, and the pathfinder doesn’t have to compute long paths for big formations.
- New Asian elephant and tiger animations.
- Some new buildings were added to Brits and Gauls, complete with AO, normals and specularity.
- New terrain textures.
Development Updates, Bug Fixes and Miscellaneous Features
The new GUI design, modelled by the new Multiplayer Lobby.
- New GUI Design: Work on a new and improved user interface design has started a while ago. With Alpha 15 you can see it in action the first time! At the moment the new design is only used for the multiplayer lobby, but other menus will hopefully also benefit from the improvements in the future.
- Internationalization Work Started: For the next Alpha we intend to include a translation system, and work on such a system has already begun. Volunteers have begun translating 0 A.D. into dozens of languages. If you have the necessary skills to help localize 0 A.D., feel free to head over to the web-based translation platform Transifex!
- Multiplayer OOS Problems Fixed: Several causes of out-of-sync errors in multiplayer games have been fixed. These issues made multiplayer games with AI players nearly unplayable in Alpha 14 but should now be fixed.
- Increased Support for Multiplayer Hosting: If you were unable to host multiplayer games before because you couldn’t manually setup port forwarding, now the game will try to automatically negotiate port forwarding with routers supporting UPnP. This should allow more people to host multiplayer games without connection issues.
- Some recent graphical changes make it possible to make particle jet trails and more realistic smoke in the future.
- Random map generation is now faster.
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.
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!
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, …).
Osiris was an ancient Egyptian god, usually identified as the god of the afterlife, the underworld and the dead. In honor of the release of the Ptolemies, we have decided to dub Alpha 15 “Osiris”.
For the next alpha, we welcome fan suggestions for words relating to the ancient world beginning with the letter P. Keep it original and related to the time frame portrayed in 0 A.D. (appx. 500 BC – 1 BC)!
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Contact info for press, bloggers, etc.: aviv@wildfireNILEgames.com without the capitalized name of Egypt’s most important river.