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Thursday, August 31, 2000
Escape Velocity 3 Update
2:04 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Helpful IMG reader 'Jesse' pointed out that the developer log for Ambrosia Software''s upcoming title Escape Velocity 3 has received a large update. More than a mere sequel, this third title in the popular EV series of shareware space adventure games features an all-new graphics engine, advanced enemy/NPC AI and, as we have just learned, a story line which has been in development for over three years.

Programmer Matthew Burch updated the progress log earlier today with a list of all the changes he has made to the EV engine to date. It is quite an extensive list, as you shall see. We've excerpted part of it for you:

  • replaced old graphics engine with new system capable of 16-bit color and translucency effects
  • replaced all uses of mission bits with new mission bit scripting system
  • game can optionally be run in a window and allow background event processing
  • weapon particle effects
  • weapon submunitions
  • weapon ionization effects
  • game speed is automatically adjusted to remain constant on all systems
  • missions can be offered from anywhere in the spaceport
  • missions can advance the game clock
  • better beam graphics
  • outfit items can alter the max number of another item
  • each system can have its own unique background color
  • murky-system graphical effect
  • AI ships can fire guns at long range, if possible
  • AI ships are smarter about weapon selection
  • AI ships consider the odds before attacking
  • added big preview pict in shipyard info dialog
  • added optional still pictures to mission briefings
  • animated stellar objects
  • banking-ship graphics
  • animated parts on ships (alternating, cycling, or folding/unfolding)
This is just a sample of the extensive changes made to the game engine. You might note that, despite rampant rumors about this issue, there is no mention of adding multiplayer/netplay support to this title.

Jesse also informed us that the story line for this title will be based on Nova, a huge plug-in created for the original Escape Velocity but never released. Developed by Australian company Atmos Software, this plug-in was in development for over three years. Currently EV3 is still in Alpha stage, with no precise release date, but it is expected to be out before the end of the year.

Ambrosia Software
Escape Velocity 3 Progress Log

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