Here at Windows Phone Central, we’re all big fans of strategy title ARMED! from Dallas-based indie developer Sickhead Games. Among the game’s many qualities are sharp 3D graphics, intuitive controls, online multiplayer, and of course, plenty of strategic depth. Not only that, but Sickhead has regularly updated the game since its release, tweaking and improving a variety of elements with each patch.
The latest update, version 1.6 is no less impressive than previous updates. The update just went live so look for it pushing out any time. We've got the full list of changes to share with you, the most impressive of which is the new price: $2.99, down from $3.99. That and more ARMED! news after the break.
ARMED! version 1.6 release notes:
- The game over screen has been completely redesigned.
- Surrendering now has its own game finishing sequence.
- New presentation of matchmaking results.
- Gameplay HUD now includes back/pause button.
- Gameplay pause screen redesigned.
- Added logo/title/back badge across all game screens.
- New alert notification voice overs.
- Matchmaking live search now continues until a match is found or it is stopped.
- We tweaked the camera control physics for pan and rotate.
- Camera zoom now has some momentum and bounce.
- We now continue to animate the camera during game over sequence.
- Moved matchmaking screen AD to top right corner.
- The particle system now shares index buffers reducing memory usage.
- We now play a sound when a live match is found during matchmaking.
- We now disable the WP7 lock screen during matchmaking search.
- We hide the Back/Replay/Timescale buttons during the game over sequence.
- You now "surrender" a multiplayer game instead of "forfeit".
- We now show the published date on news items.
- Slider controls now react better to input.
- We now have a brighter disabled text color.
- Added mech death animation.
- Matchmaking screen now shows a 'Stop' button when searching.
- General optimizations to garbage generation for reduced memory usage and collection.
- The "Riverted" level has foliage cover in areas that were previously missing.
- The "Deserted" level was updated with detailed texture work and more saturation to the overall look.
- The "Vilecano" level has lighter coloring near the brim of the volcanos and more trees in the soft cover areas.
- The "Sn0wned" level has texture improvements to more clearly define mountainous and unplayable areas.
- Projectiles no longer emit particles at their origin.
- Made big performance improvements in AI pathfinding.
- Units will now prefer to path which is visually more direct towards their destination.
- Now all AI difficulties will decide to send units on patrol if there is nothing to attack.
- AI will now end its deployment early if it wants to build a factory, but fails do to not being able to afford it.
- AI now prefers patrolling around locations which are threatened.
- We added an acknowledge step for all turns sent to the server with periodic retries until we get confirmation.
- Vehicles now are rotated to face their rally path direction on creation.
- Units now visually pick a more logical rotation direction on construction.
- Flame thrower particles now have a starting random rotation.
- We now scale the pick box on units based on camera distance for better selection.
- The pick box for non-flying units is now extended downward to the terrain height.
- We now use the selectron instead of the pick box for the start of path dragging operations.
- Tweaked visual selectron size for all units.
- Units now logically move into a tile when they reach the halfway point of walk duration.
- Units following other units are now processed after the leader unit.
- Units following other units will now pause several moves before reacting when that unit moves.
- Units are now still processed during the move in which they are destroyed making simultaneously kills possible.
- Optimized out unseen polys on some units.
- Tweaked fog tile elevation across all maps.
- Unit shadows now animate their position.
- Mech shockwave art improvements.
- Improvements to bug reporting.
- Fixed desyncs caused by unstable sorts.
- Removed floating point calculations which cause desyncs from unit target selection.
- Fixed desync by converting path neighbor ratings to use integer math.
- Fixed some incorrect event handlers causing stuck matches.
- Removed unwanted beep from the end of the gameplay music track.
- Fixed periodic crash caused by collection modification in a foreach.
- Fixed a bunch of memory leaks causing out of memory errors after dozens of play sessions.
- Fixed a bug which could cause music volume to be changed when leaving a game.
- Fixed issue where the game would get stuck in an infinite loop when the game ended.
- Fixed crash when updating leaderboard entries after leaderboard screen was exited.
- Fixed a replay determinism issue do to AI repathing units immediately after the reload.
- Fixed bug that allowed users to back out of buy screens on the tutorial.
- Fixed crash caused by too many open matches by adding a maximum to the list from the server.
- AI will now stop building ground units from factories at locations which do not have ground paths enemy controlled locations.
- AI will now repath units which it believes are stuck.
- AI will no longer get stuck if all factories fail to build.
- AI will no longer path units to locations which they can never reach.
- Fixed "Riverted" level build locations to solve stuck factory case.
- Fixed the small camera pan that would occur prior to a path node drag operation starting.
- Fixed interpolation jerk with evading drones.
- Fixed visual jaggies in the rocket projectile ribbon trail.
- Fixed a path node selection when there was greater than one node in the same tile.
- Fixing an issue with cluster not visually aiming upward when firing at distant targets.
- Fixed cluster attack which was not causing hit units to burn or igniting the destination tile.
“Thanks for playing ARMED!” – Sickhead Games
ARMED! on other platforms
Nobody tell them how phallic this looks.
The above release notes also apply to the Windows 8 version of ARMED!, which we’ve detailed before and is currently available for free. However, the Windows 8 update won’t actually go live for another 1-2 weeks due to certification issues, so don’t go looking for it just yet. Me, I’m patiently waiting for Windows 8 to actually launch before I dive into all that good stuff.
Additionally, sign-ups for the long-promised iOS port have just opened. If you’re one of those scoundrels who uses Apple devices, you can register right here. It works with any iOS device, so don’t worry about jailbreaking or robbing a bank or whatever they call it. The iOS beta is free and will support cross-platform multiplayer with our beloved Windows Phone version right out of the gate. Windows 8 cross-platform play is coming too eventually!
I like the game on the phone, like it even more on my Acer W500 Windows 8 tablet.
ARMED 2.0 update adds Xbox Live support.
Xbox live support will mean less and slower updates.
But it means achievements and seamless online play with Xbox and windows 8 users. That's more people than iOS.
It means exactly nothing for online play and I am pretty sure iOS > WP + Win 8 right now.
iOS is NOT greater than Xbox live GTFO with that!
Really, didn't they say they didn't want this? how will that work with their planned ios support since they won't be on Xbox live? Sounds doubtful.
At this point i would really be surprised if Microsoft would invite us into the XBL program, but if they did i would be willing to talk about it with them. As much as i personally like XBL/XBLA the FEZ situation is one sort of problem that makes me leery of it as a developer. We are planning at going at similar features on our own and have just started working on some richer multiplayer features which would include an achievement like system for a future release. - Tom
As a fellow Dallasite and having a brother who's a game dev, I know how challenging developing can be. So, I gotta say, bravo! This is by far one of the most well done games on any mobile platform. I got my arse destroyed in a multiplayer match, but this game is stellar. Guess, I gotta practice more. Again, good job guys.
I think you can achieve a balance between being a "Xbox Live certified" and a indie game.
I think that the experience of being an Xbox Live Game would bring more attention than already behind. The game deserves.
And, please, publish the game in the Brazilian Marketplace!
We actually just fired off the paperwork to the Brazilian government to allow us to publish ARMED! to that marketplace. We will make 1.6 available to that marketplace as soon as that is approved. - Tom
Thank you! We greatly appreciate your work!
Ahhh, thank you, thank you!!!! :)
And once MS gets wind of that they will make it Xbox live. Same thing happened with wordament.
Would love Xbox Live support!
I love this game, will the final windows 8 be paid or free? WP users get it for free? Just wondering.
We're going to do things a little differently than with WP7. We feel that maybe being a paid app with a trial discouraged many people from even downloading the game. The next Windows 8 release of ARMED! will be free with ads and 1 or 2 maps to play on. You will be able to make an in-app purchase to remove ads and unlock the first map pack. This will probably also be how it will work for iOS and Windows Phone 8. - Tom
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