The Tachyon to Freespace2 Full Conversion Mod

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FringeSpace – Year 7

September 26th 2006, when RazorsKiss and myself started FringeSpace we knew we were
starting something big and we’d be over our heads from the get go. While that’s
certainly been a consistent theme over the course of our project, it’s been a
ongoing learning experience.

In review:

In late 2012, we closed our forums, rebuilt the website totally, and moved our
forums to Hard-Light.

In a collaborative effort with some helpful people at the Xentax forums, we
managed to figure out the audio format used for the in-game music, and recompiled
them, to release a complete soundtrack for Tachyon the Fringe.

Over the last year Z64 has rebuilt the model extractor from scratch pretty much
and allowed us to get small to medium content out.

From there, we got all 11 of the Tachyon powerups / refills in FSO.

We squashed about 45 bugs while keeping up with the new SCP releases.

Our Tachyon Facebook group of fans has grown to over 300 strong.

Lastly, we have recently completed rigging of 18 primary ships so they are
all in game.

For the interested, these are:

-Gal Span-
Pegasus
Orion
Poseidon
Archangel
Phoenix

-Bora-
Battleaxe
Mace
Cutlass
Warhammer
Claymore

-Pirate-
Demon
Manta
Marauder
Nighthawk

-Merc-
Gar
Corvus

-Other-
Mako
Worker Drone

…and we have another 7 about halfway completed already. This doesn’t include test models, new
higher poly replacements, or structures we’ve imported already.

As this is a large enough set to meet our initial alpha goal, we will be transitioning from
working on models, to polishing the interface; namely the HUD and game menus. While a good deal
of ship handling was polished in the past by staff, we’ll also be taking a look at this again,
since features and models have changed. For example, we didn’t have gun convergence in 2006…

What we will need however, is some additional talent. Namely someone with some familiarity with
FRED, and we’ll be needing some help with LUA scripting. If one or both of these is something you
can work with, we’d like to hear from you!

There’s also an opening for a texture artist for a handful of new models, but this isn’t
an urgent need currently.

So there you have it. Even though we’re one of the smallest mod teams, we still keep pushing
on towards our release. We hope the following year will be more productive and look forward
to sharing more progress with y’all.

Thank you… friends and fans alike, for all your support.

~ JGZinv

Bora Fighters Complete!

Woot indeed.

Instead of just giving you pictures of the models, thought this time
we’d give you something to play with. Click and drag in the model boxes
to move them around, scroll wheel zooms, and there are menu buttons for
each model on the side.

These should all be in game tomorrow. They are each about 80% rigged currently.

Model Converter Complete!

Back in 2002 Delphy made a partial PAK extractor that showed it could be possible to get models out of Tachyon and ever since, fans of the ship designs and those with big imaginations have wanted to be able to see them out of the game. Finally, nearly 13 years later, that becomes reality.

Shadow Z spent several months completely redesigning a new PAK converter from the ground up, just now completing the project. Click on an image for a larger version.

GalSpan Hanger

Roid Mine

Base Core

Demon Pirate

Bora Warhammer

All 1,165 files work. Once we’ve got them organized better we’ll have more to show.

Needless to say this will be a huge help to our mod in the future, and we’ll be looking for additional staff soon so we can start back again towards our goal of an alpha demo for folks to play.

TTF Soundtrack Release & Notes

Merry Christmas space folk!

Just in time to be your present, the FringeSpace Team is proud to
release The Unofficial Tachyon Soundtrack.

44 Tracks reassembled and edited for your enjoyment, and for an extra bonus
we went and made up a nice set of jewel case inserts so you can show it off.

It’s been in the works a few months now, but we hope you enjoy it.

Download Link – Tachyon Unofficial Soundtrack

In other news, Shadow Z is making good progress on the extractor now.
We’ve actually exported some models and are working on the UVs, Normals, and
Textures part of it. Should have some images to show very soon.

Happy holidays and a good new Earth standard year for those on SOL time.

A year in review…

Alright, so this has been due for quite some time.

Let’s get the sad news out of the way first:
Over the last year roughly we’ve had several folks come and go with the project:
RK has for all intents and purposes handed FS over to me (JGZ) as he is switching jobs and will be on the road full time. He still funds the site and some other things,
and started this project with me way back in 2006, so I am keeping him in the Staff list as co-founder.

Several of the team members from Hard-Light, have moved on to other interests or otherwise needed to pick up jobs and/or college so they’ve had to step away. I myself became employed full time back in April, working 14 hour shifts, so that has left next to no time to do much of anything.  To his credit, a large portion of the work this year was done by Shadow Z (more on that in a moment).

Essentially we are down to really 2-3 “regulars,” and 2-3 people that are still “attached” but not actively doing any task for one reason or another. Due to this, we really need new blood and
I will be making several posts out on the net in the vein of Help Wanted ads. A post will also be made here shortly with more details on what we’re looking for. If nothing else, spread our
name and new website around, word of mouth (or social networking) gets around really quickly and may indirectly yield the help we would like to see.

Moving on…  So what have we accomplished?
Well…

We figured out the SBF file format, so we can listen to all Tachyon’s audio.
As such, a Tach fan (docfoo) is putting together all the clips and reworking them into a proper
soundtrack we hope we can make available soon.
We combined all the Tachyon concept art we could find and made one big collection for your enjoyment.
All current fighter craft and weapons were created tables (settings) for by MetalMilitia.
Shadow Z spent a good amount of time on optimizing the Fenris Arena stations so they don’t eat
your FPS down to a crawl, and also fixing some geometry errors.
Rstar created several slick new models, a new Demon, a new Manta, and a regular Tachyon gate.
We 3D printed a 3.5 inch Demon, Manta, and Pegasus. (This was very cool ^_^ )
We fixed/replaced the website…  (ok obvious I guess)

Later on in the year, we were able to get the source code for the old PAK model extractor that had been made by Delphy, as having a way to get non-screwy UV mapped models out of Tachyon would be a huge help with our own project in a multitude of ways. Shadow Z began working on this solely and did make some progress. I’ve also been hunting around for quite some time, trying to offer a bounty on someone who could correct the PAK extractor’s faults for us. Some have tried, no one stayed with it to really yield the needed results. We ARE still looking for someone for this task…  please contact us if you have any experience with picking through raw data, C++ or Visual Basic, or a knowledge of texture mapping in relation to coding.

In other news:

Sort of a sister Freespace 2 mod to ours, Diaspora (Battlestar Galactica related), released a few weeks back. Diaspora actually began as Beyond the Red Line (BtRL) not much longer after we began FringeSpace. So we congratulate them on getting released. You can find their mod here:  http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?board=175.0

Also of note is that Chris Roberts of Wing Commander fame, has come out of retirement to propose a new space combat sim game. That being Star Citizen, which he’s trying to crowdsource the funding on. Being that one of the main features is modding for dedicated servers and a current generation game engine under the hood, I’m keeping a close eye on this project. If you’d like to see his trailers or get in on it, his site for the game is here:  http://www.robertsspaceindustries.com/

Well that’s about it for now fellow scallywags of the Fringe. Stay gold…

Back from the Twilight Fog…

Ok so as the posts will show below, we’ve been offline without a working website
for nearly a year now. It’s been a long time in coming but I finally sat down and
plugged away and got our new blog/site up and running.

Most of the same stuff is here, you’ll find the majority of information in the menu
bar at the top of the page and you’ll also notice our forums were absorbed into
the main forums at Hard-Light Productions. Stop by and say hi…

There’s probably a few things still broken or otherwise not filled in, such as the
gallery, but we’ll work on that. Do let us know if something looks really messed up
though.

Quite a few things have changed with the mod since the last update, which we’ll
hopefully get to covering and filling you in on soon.

Thanks for sticking around and being patient!

~J

Forum Section Shut Down

This is just a notice that I’m taking the FringeSpace.org forum offline.
Due to the age of the forum software, which I don’t have access to change,
the board is being flooded with spam bots, posting everything from porn,
to pill ads, and giant posts of mindless text. I’ve been fighting it for well over a
month already, deleting and banning posts/accounts.

Frankly it’s taking up more time each day, and that time can be better
spent modding or any number of things.

So rest assured the posts are not gone, the board is just deactivated.

If there’s some information you need, or you need support for Tachyon,
please go to our other forum at Hard-Light:
http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?board=195.0

…or post to the Tachyon Facebook group:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tachyon-The-Fringe/184709132945

…or you can reach me directly via Email:
#JGZinv#@gmail.com (remove the # symbols)

The board will be kept offline until I can reach Razor and a update can
be made, or someone needs something off it and I’ll reopen it for a short time.

Thank you.

Prayers Needed for Razor and Family

Razor and his troop could use some prayers.

Show the man some support. Have your church put them on their prayer list if you have one.

Info at the link:

RazorsKiss Site Link

Late April Note

Well a little bit of an update on things:

We’re moving along a little bit better now, Thaeris from the Stellar Assault
mod has been helping us convert models so that we can get a useable set
of regular ships. These will not be hi poly versions, but you should notice
an improvement in texture quality appearance over Tachyon.

Angelus has come back from a long trip and will start on model
upgrades again.

ShadowZ will be off for some time due to work.

The old Tachyon SBF archives were made playable thanks to the Xentax
modder forums. So that’s nice to have available for reference.

The Tachyon Facebook group has been seeing some activity, please stop
by or follow it so you can be aware of updates from plzdie and myself.

Tach Lobby Down

**** UPDATE **** **** UPDATE ****
Tach lobby is back up. No IP change surprisingly.
**** UPDATE **** **** UPDATE ****

The NovaLogic Tach lobby is offline. Evidently NL is changing things
around yet again. Here’s the announcement from their site.

“In preparation for upcoming releases of new products and services,
NovaLogic is restructuring various web servers so as to provide a more
cohesive environment. During the course of this restructuring, some
redundancy will be removed, and some favorite NovaWorld legacy
features will be revived. During this process we foresee no significant
service outages. The changes will be ongoing, and should enhance
organization and game-play. Please keep watching this Announcement
section for updates and information.”

Don’t know if that means Tach will be removed, since it could be seen
as redundant, or if they’ll keep it around. No idea, we’ll have to see.
In the meantime, you’ll get a white or blank screen when trying to get
to the lobby address. Kali still works for long distance LAN, but people
will have to agree to use it.