Finally, it happened. The alpha version is available here:
At the moment, it's only available to Premium players (active subscription or Full package). The alpha uses completely separate database, so your account details are copied there. Registration is automatic. Nothing you do in the alpha affects your account in the current version. SP, ranks and medals are not transferred due to the radical changes there.
Scenarios and presets are temporarily disabled, they will be back very soon!
Feel free to poke around and create maps. Remember, that this is the alpha version, and it's pretty damn raw. We need your help in testing it and violently eradicating all the bugs. Please report them in the new forum: http://afterwind.com/forum/board.php?board_id=200
Most important thing: Don't panic! We will hear your feedback and correct the mistakes, and we will eventually get rid of all the bugs. So, instead of running around screaming "NO GOOD! NO ME GUSTA!", please provide some helpful criticism and new ideas here: http://afterwind.com/forum/board.php?board_id=201.
Here's the (probably incomplete) list of changes:
All the tools you need to create your own map, complete with fully customizable countries, cities and units. Upload a map background, draw borders, create countries, cities and units. Create presets and scenarios for you map (coming very soon).
Scenarios and presets
(Currently disabled) Scenarios will serve the same function as now, but you will be able to apply them to custom maps as well. Also, presets, a limited version of a scenario, will allow to create sets of countries and cities for maps. This system will replace current rigid presets and the 100 additional cities option.
City population now receives collateral damage when a city is attacked. Casualties depend on the scale of the battle and on the type of attacking units. Units now have a new stat: Collateral, which is added to regular attack damage and only affects civilians. The casualties are shown in the city menu, battle menu, in the end game stats and sometimes in the events menu (when the damage is particularly high). Population affects the city income and reinforcements. If the population drops to 50%, you will only be receiving half of the income and half of the reinforcements.[/color]
Full country bonus
All income is now calculated from cities only, there's no bonus from owning an entire country anymore. We decided that with the added population casualties the income system was getting too complicated, even for our own understanding.
We completely removed the ARB system that nobody was able to fully comprehend, and instead added critical hit chance. Critical hit chance can be 1-100%, which is the chance to deal additional damage - in addition to regular attack/defence roll, the unit deals it's maximum attack/defence damage. So, if your Tank (max attack 7) rolls 3, the critical hit would be 10 (3+7). Simple?
End game stats and screens
End game stats have been spiced up with the 3 neat images we posted earlier (http://afterwind.com/events/news_comments.php?news_id=71). Also, the displayed stats have been changed to: Population casualties, Cities occupied, Units destroyed, Units built, Units lost, Income.
The turns are now just turns, all mentions of 'weeks' have been erased. This was done mostly to accomodate custom maps, but also to simplify things a bit.
You now have an option to see the damage units deal in battles. If you want to fully understand battle mechanics, this will surely help. You can set 3 different battle speeds in your settings. There's still an option to have quick battles - with only casualties shown.
Spiced up unit movements and battles
Selecting a unit and attacking now has some extra animation and sounds. Battles now end in a spectacular boom with floating SP.
To allow the creation of custom units which are still attached to strategies and upgrades, we added unit roles. For example, Infantry is Ground Main Defence, Submarine is Naval Stealth, Spy plane is Air Support, etc. Strategies and upgrades now affect unit roles, as opposed to just individual units. So, if in your map you create a new unit and assign a role to it, it will still be affected. Each role has margins in which you can modify unit stats. In addition, there are Rare and Other roles, which don't have such limitations. Rare units can also be created and will only appear randomly when a city is conquered, the same way it works now.
Strategies and upgrades
Strategies and upgrades have been changed to affect unit roles instead of individual units. Tank General has been changed to a more generic Relentless Attack. Some additional upgrades have been added to unlock additional unit roles (none of them are used in the Default map though).
Medals and ranks
Medals have been reworked to accomodate unit roles, so they would still work in custom maps. In addition, medals and receiving a new rank now look a lot sexier
New lobby interface
Lobby got a facelift with the new open games list and the new maps list. They look more modern and show more information. Possibly have some bugs too, but we promise to fix them as soon as they are found. Toolbars and buttons got updated a bit as well.
SP is now rank-dependent
SP you receive from battles is now calculated with ranks taken into account. If your opponent's rank is a lot higher than yours, you will get a lot of extra SP, and the other way round. Neutral troops always have the rank of 0, so the further you get in your ranks, the less SP you will receive from fighting Neutrals. We hope this will help in preventing SP farming and discourage high-ranking players from harassing newbies.
Chat is now collapsible