April Update: Standalone TDM making progress

Rest assured that we’re still working hard at getting TDM ready to go standalone, which means that you will no longer require Doom 3 in order to play it. Before we can do this, we need to make sure no Doom 3 assets are being referenced by TDM anymore, so most of our time since the release of 1.08 has been spent making replacements for those assets. It’s a great deal of work, as there are sounds, textures, models, particles, and even animated characters that need replacing.
Skeleton
 

I can tell you that work is progressing well, however. Several members of the TDM community have chipped in contributions, including sounds from Simplen00b and plasticman, models from RPGista and Baddcog, and textures from SeriousToni and Radiant. Greebo contributed our new zombie character, and Arcturus has been working on animations for it. Mr. Lemony Fresh has contributed an absolutely fantastic new skeleton mesh, and Springheel has replaced all the D3 heads and body parts being used. I think you’ll be happy with the quality of the replacements when you see them.

heads
We are getting there. I was able to load up Chalice of Kings last night and play through start to finish with no Doom 3 in sight, and no missing assets either. If things continue to go smoothly, we’re hoping for a standalone version of TDM sometime this fall.

In case you’re worried that the next update will only provide replacement assets and nothing else, fear not! Grayman has been coding like a madman, solving dozens of annoying bugs that have plagued TDM from the start, including the infamous “sleepers falling through the floor” and “AI attacking with no weapon” bugs. He has also fixed a lot of AI communication, so AI talk to each other more, and notice when each other are in trouble in ways they weren’t doing previously. He has also fixed some major sound issues, added the ability for archers to switch to melee weapons at close range, created new behaviour for AI who witness someone killed, and so many other things I can’t keep track.

With all the excitement surrounding the announcement of the new “Thief”, we know people are eager for stealth games to play. TDM is proud to be able to help fill that niche while we all wait to see what Eidos has to offer in 2014. The first mission of our upcoming “Unusual Gameplay” contest has already been released, and others are coming before the August deadline. Enjoy!

TDM 1.08 is Finally Here!

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It’s the third anniversary of The Dark Training Mission UpdateMod’s release today. What better way to celebrate than to present our most significant update ever?

The 1.08 update contains nearly a year’s worth of updates and improvements. So many, in fact, that it’s hard to remember them all. Some of the improvements, like getting TDM ready to go standalone, are fairly transparent to the user. Others will have a noticable impact on your game.

IMPORTANT: Because of changes to the way TDM is run now, (in preparation for going standalone) the first time you run TDM 1.08, you will need to reset your keybindings and other settings. Additionally, “tdmlauncher.exe” no longer starts TDM. Users will need to change any shortcuts to darkmod/TheDarkMod.exe, in Windows, and thedarkmod.x86 for Linux users. As always with an update, saved games from earlier versions will no longer work, so finish any missions you’re in the middle of!

Additional Note: TDM will NOT work with the Doom 3 BFG edition.

Richer audio: TDM 1.08 should provide a much more immersive sound experience. We’ve added over 200 new impact sounds, as well as two new vocal sets. Many things that used to be silent now make appropriate noises. Falling bodies now make impact sounds, arrows have sound as they whiz past you, and AI make rustling noises as they move based on what they’re wearing.

AI Improvements: The lightning-fast reactions of AI have been toned down, so that they don’t leap immediately to combat after a half-second glimpse of you down the street. AI now react to things getting thrown at them, and can be knocked out by heavy things
being dropped on their head. AI are smarter about using elevators and will use them while searching now. Several new AI character models have been added, including the Builder Acolyte and the Elite Citywatch.

Additionally: The Training Mission has been revamped by Bikerdude for 1.08, with a few new sections and beautiful improvements to the visuals. The team’s second demo mission, The Tears of St. Lucia, has also been updated for 1.08 and is now included with the mod by default.

There have also been dozens of new art assets added, an entire series of new light entities, improved flame particles, performance improvements, additional animations, fixes to some physics issues, and well over 100 other bugfixes. You can see a full changelog here: What’s New

To get the update, simply run tdm_update.exe in your darkmod folder. If you’ve never downloaded TDM before, visit our Download page for full instructions: Download

Thanks to our new coder, Taaaki, who did a great deal of work on this update preparing TDM to run standalone. And special thanks to grayman, without whom the update would never have happened at all.

Hope you enjoy!

Happy Anniversary TDM!

It was three years ago today that TDM 1.0 was released to the public. Hard to believe so much time has gone by. Behind the scenes we’re still working diligently to get 1.08 ready for public consumption. There are more than 100 bugfixes for this update, and it changes a lot about the way TDM installs and runs missions, so it is taking longer than we had hoped to get the details out. Keep watching this space for more information.

June 14th, 2012

Work on the 1.08 update continues behind the scenes. We’re changing the way the folder structure works in TDM to prepare for going standalone, and that is requiring a lot of extra time. Version 1.08 will not be fully standalone; it will run without Doom3, but most missions won’t load properly without Doom 3 assets.

There will also be many noticable improvements in 1.08, including a much richer sound experience, new characters, more forgiving AI, and improvements to object physics. A full changelog is here: 1.08 Changelog

Dark Mod wins award for Best Mod Community!

The Dark Mod has won the 2011 Editor’s Choice award from ModDB for “Best community integration in a modification”!

“Without communities mods would be nothing more then a static object on the web, communities are responsible for keeping mods relevant, motivating the developers and expanding on the mod in their own way. To win the Community Award the mod needs to support the fanbase around the modification giving the masses a chance to participate within the overall design of the mod. The Dark Mod is the most deserving this year.

“Building a community is quite a difficult and drawn out process, it first takes a good product to bring in people, then a reason for those people to stick around. The Dark Mod has an amazing collection of user created levels and theme packs built for competitions held by the developers. A shining example of how communities are important for all mods!”

Visit Award Page

December 18th, 2011

A Dark Mod Campaign is in the works!

Announcing The Crucible of Omens, a full-length campaign for The Dark Mod. Playing as the thief and adventurer John Welland Hadley, you will embark on a quest to find a powerful artifact inherited from a shadowy past. The Crucible of Omens spans multiple large missions and is being worked on by many well-known TDM mappers.

See the full announcement and media release here.

November 12th, 2011


It’s hard to describe all the ways our AI are going to become more sophisticated in 1.07, mostly thanks to grayman. AI will now properly notice and comment when suspicious doors are left open. They’ll notice rope arrows left dangling in lit areas, and will come over and look up or down the rope to see if anyone is on it. AI will notice if arrows are left sticking out of things (and will no longer call them “weapons”, or comment casually after getting shot with them).

AI will do a better job of warning each other about suspicious events now too–if an AI sees the player but fails to catch him, he’ll warn all his friends that there is a thief in the area. If he sees a dead body, he’ll start warning people about a murderer. This causes the friends to start patrolling with their weapons out, ready for trouble. All the new interactions make the AI seem even more believable and challenging.

November 1st, 2011

Five contest missions are now available for the Halloween contest! The contenders are: “Dragon’s Claw” by Bikderdude, “House in Blackbog Hollow” by Stumpy, “Samhain Night on Bone Hill” by PranQster, “The Creeps” by Mortem Desino and “A Night to Remember” by Fieldmedic. Be sure to vote for your favourites in our forums!