It's been a little over a month since the v4.6 release, and we're pretty happy with the progress we've made on the mod. v4.6 is one of the most stable releases we've had yet and also one of the most feature-filled.
To date, we've had almost 10,000 downloads of the v4.6 installer on ModDB.com alone. This number doesn't account for the other 10+ file mirrors that have graciously provided bandwidth for us. Many thanks to everyone that helped us mirror the release!
We've been working non-stop on Sven Co-op since the v4.6 release on December 24th. The next patch will be v4.7, and we hope to get it finalized and released fairly soon. It currently provides a wealth of new features and improvements, but I'm not going to list them all out today.
Today I'm going to talk about the most significant feature in v4.7: an all-new sentence manager integrated with our sound engine.
In prior versions of Sven Co-op, we relied on Half-Life's sound engine to handle all sentences in the game. Sentences, in Half-Life 1, are generally used by NPCs to speak, though they can be used for doors, the announcement system, scripted events, atmospheric ambience, and more. The new updated sound engine also handles NPC mouth movement for each word spoken in a sentence, as you would expect.
// BASE COMPUTER
// C1A0 intercom
C1A0_START dadeda vox_login
C1A0_0 dadeda (e95) agent(t0) coomer(t0), report to(e70) topside tactical operations center(e100)
C1A0_1 dadeda inspection team, to(e70) radioactive materials handling bay(e100)
C1A0_2 dadeda (e95) agent sixteen, report to(e70) administration sub level two(e100)
C1A0_3 doop (e95) doctor johnson, please call observation tank one(e100)
C1A0_4 doop (e95 p96) doctor west(t0), please report to(e70) lambda(s0) reactor complex(e100)
C1A0_5 doop (e95) doctor cross, call seven two nine please(e100)
C1A0_6 doop (e95) sargeant(s0) bailey(s0), to(e70) topside checkpoint bravo(e100)
C1A0_7 dadeda (e95) cryogenic safety crew, report status at eleven hundred please(e100)
Above: An excerpt from the sentence definition file.
The new sentence manager was started over the Christmas break and it was finished a couple of weeks ago (having insomnia during the holidays helped out a lot). Our beta-testing team has already gone through to ensure our new sentence support is 100% backwards-compatible with Half-Life 1.
- We've raised the maximum sound limit to 4096 sounds. In v4.0 - v4.6, the limit was 2048. In regular half-life, the limit was 1024.
- Up to 2048 sentences can be defined per map. Half-Life's limit was originally 1536.
- Mappers can provide their own sentences or replace existing ones.
- Higher quality audio can now be used for sentences.
- The sentence group limit has been lifted to 512, up from 384 in regular Half-Life.
- Audio conflicts with the Half-Life engine have been eliminated now that we handle all audio in the game.
- Environmental audio effects (caves, small rooms, hangars, underwater, etc.) now apply to sentences.
- Sentence index mismatches no longer occur (NPCs speaking the wrong sentence). This problem would appear if the player or server's sentences.txt file was altered.
In our next update, we'll be talking about some other features you can expect in Sven Co-op v4.7.
We'll also be detailing our plans for a new UI system in development.