It’s been 13 years since Alien Arena debuted as a demo in August of 2004.  Since then, the game has twice received extensive artistic and content overhauls, dividing the timeline into 3 distinct generations.  I thought it would be fun to re-create one of the recent screenshots taken of the game in each of the generations of the game.  The model is the Martian Enforcer player character, and the level is Dm-Babel, one of my(and many fans of the game) all-time favorite levels.  Partially inspired by the famous UT2k3 level “Inferno”, Babel grew into something a bit more, and through a combination of layout improvements and artistic updates, became one of the game’s most exciting and stunning levels.  Each of these shots was taken using the latest version of the engine, but in an effort to try and remain somewhat true what the game was at these times, the effects have been tweaked to represent that properly.  Babel was introduced to the game during the Spring of 2007, during the height of Generation 1’s popularity.

gen1babel

In 2008, 4 years after the debut of Generation 1, the game received a signifigant update.  A few years later, Babel was also updated, adding new sections, textures, and flowing lava.  The Martian Enforcer and his weapon have a distinctive new look, and the engine was by then capable of much better rendering using a new model format, with GLSL and vastly improved shaders and lighting effects.  Generation 2 had peaked by then, and soon would find itself relegated to the archives.

gen2babel

Now, Generation 3 of the Martian Enforcers, standing in the same spot on a heavily updated Babel.  Featuring new textures, terrain, effects, and decals you can see just how far the art, and game has come along.  This isn’t your daddy’s Alien Arena!  It’s a brand new, massively updated game that has been reworked at every turn, visually, aurally, physically – it’s a Brave New World, and you won’t believe how much it has evolved until you get your hands on it, and feel how much more smoothly it plays, how much better the animation is(from every aspect), and how FAST it plays.  In an era where it seems that the AFPS genre has been slowed down, to the point of feeling, and looking like players are wading in molasses, Alien Arena looks, plays, and feels crisp, tight and fast.

generation3_35

13 years of evolution.

 

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