FROM: Project Lead
TO: Beta Users
INFO: Sandbox staging, Review version, Radio Protocol
Release prep continues and we're carefully juggling what changes we will still update the September 12 release version with. Today we're also sending the press review build to the global games media. We're excited to learn what they think about the game and Arma 3 as a long-term platform. The current version on development branch is not representative of this review version entirely - that branch contains experimental changes and of course still lacks content. That is about to change however; tomorrow's devbranch update will add all sandbox release content - a week before the rest of the world gets to enjoy it all!
With the staging of Altis, an issue with its memory footprint on low-memory 32 bit PCs was highlighted. This was hotfixed by increasing the default amount of memory allocated for people running the game on a 32 bit OS (this change should not affect 64 bit users at all, but that claim is being investigated here). We also posted ways of testing different values via EXE shortcut parameters and methods of generally increasing the OS memory settings (at your own risk). Programming Lead Ondřej Martinák summarized solutions on the forums.
Over a thousand scenarios have been published to Workshop already, and the game isn't even released yet! We've started to put some of our dev favorites in the spotlights. Programmer Ondřej was the first to submit his selection and he went for 'Ground Attack' by DICS. His comments on the scenario: "You control an attack helicopter with a simple objective: destroy the enemy vehicle convoy. The mission is focused on action, with smooth gameplay and some really nice attention to detail. While you're at it, also be sure to check out its sequel: Ground Attack II."
Besides the memory hotfix and workaround above, the programmers are working on optimizations to reduce the game's memory footprint generally. Some of these efforts have already made their way to devbranch, and more will come soon. A few examples of areas they are working on: the system dynamically generating road models on the terrains, on-the-fly shader creation based on current video settings, and storing of font data (Arma 3 supports a lot of large character sets such as Japanese and Korean).
All release version radio protocol actors have now been recorded, processed and added to the game. That means new English, Farsi and non-native English (AAF) speakers. Several exciting tweaks have also finally made their way into the game. The voice used by your avatar now matches your profile settings, and when you play as a CSAT character in the sandbox, you'll speak Farsi. Something which is especially cool for immersion is a fix which makes it possible to hear groups other than your own communicate in 3D space. So if you are sneaking up on a CSAT patrol, you'll hear their speech and can potentially find out what they know or what they are planning.
Besides release work, our playable content designers are working hard on finalizing the first campaign episode. They have gone into proper iterations based on all scenarios existing in a good playable state. Yesterday some of the last animations were recorded in the MOCAP studio. The designers' priority now is to finalize the texts (briefings, tasks, conversations) for translations and voice-over work. Meanwhile they keep tweaking the scenarios to serve as a cool introduction to the campaign.
If you still have Arma 3 Alpha Lite invites in your Steam Inventory, feel free to delete them. They have been expired since the Beta launched, and will not offer anything useful to you now or in the future.