Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Holidays!

We're just taking a few moments out of our busy schedules to wish everyone a merry Christmas, happy Hannukah, happy Kwanza, Happy Holidays!

There will be some updates coming around the start of the New Year. We haven't decided what yet but you can expect a more active year than the last few months which were very busy for all of us with other concerns.

Happy Holidays!

- The DFMod team

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Today I'm celebrating the joyous twenty-second anniversary of my birth.

And that's pretty much about it. I should have some updates on the progress of the Executor map in the next post, very soon.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Executor Screenshots

Hhunter6 has been making some very good progress on the Executor level (13 for those of you who may have forgotten ;) and we thought it'd be prudent to share some of the best screens with everyone.

So, without further ado:

Some other status information:
I've been swamped with art projects for school so, unfortunately, I haven't had much time to devote to mapping for the mod, just team coordination and the like. I expect to be able to get back into the swing of things sometime next month, once I complete the bulk of my senior thesis project for the fall review. If anything changes in the interim, you'll hear about it here first.

One last note. I don't mean to side track this post with a political discussion but election day is coming up here in the US. I'm going to take the time to urge US residents of legal voting age to get out there on election day and cast your ballot for President (and Congress if your representative is up for re-election). If not, take advantage of early voting and absentee ballots. I'm not going to encourage anyone to vote for a particular candidate nor will I share my own political views if I'm not pressed to do so (and maybe not even then) but I think it's important that we all exercise our civic duty, if we can.

Thank you.

Monday, September 8, 2008

School & Mod Slowdowns

Hey, folks. A few quick updates on the status of the mod.

First, I've been using my new computer for about two weeks now. It's a sweet machine but I'm not ready to switch all my JA/DFMOD files over yet as I don't want too many easy distractions when I'm trying to finish my schoolwork. So, for the meantime I'm going to leave the files on my old machine and use that as a gaming platform. I expect a switchover sometime around late Novemeber but I can't guarantee a timetable.

Also, I've just restarted school so that's going to be my priority for the next 8 or 9 months especially since I'm working on my senior project and that's going to take a considerable amount of time to properly finish. So, you can expect a slowdown on mod progress but we'll be sure to post updates as they are available.

I'm about to checkout Hhunter's new version of Executor (hopefully by this weekend) and I'll send if he can post some screenshots of his progress once I've had the chance to review it.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Detention Center Revision 2.0

Here's a list of some changes that will be made to Detention Center 2.0:

  • Reduced y-value for most rooms: One of the major internal beta criticisms of Revision 1.0 was a y-value height in most rooms that was too tall, creating a Duke Nukem style shrunken feeling. I was unable to address this concern without major reconstruction before the 6 level release was due. Most of the rooms below the first level of the base will have their y-values reduced by approximately 80 units. This brings most of the rooms into line with standard room heights and should keep objects, control consoles, etc. from feeling oversized. Unfortunately, this will require a lot of reconstruction and will delay the completion time for the map.
  • New archways between rooms: The relatively dull square archways are being replaced with more visually interesting pentagon-shaped transitions, ala the detention cell blocks.
  • New detention cell blocks: 100% new cell blocks are being constructed to be more in-line with the movie interepretion (i.e. the definitive) version of a cell block. They will be narrower, more confined, and claustrophbic.
  • New terrain lighting: The blue lighting crystals are being removed. They never quite achieved the effect I wanted and depart a bit too much for the original styling of the level. In addition, rock textures will be replaced with new versions that include the ochre-colored mold from the original level.
  • Extended escape sequence: More areas are going to be added between Madine's rescue and your escape to the roof of the base.
  • New trash compactor service tunnels: I'm rebuilding the service tunnels leading to and from the trash compactor to make them more technically interesting. The trash compactor itself should be largerly the same design, with only a few minor adjustments.
That's the bulk of what's going to be changed. The gameplay should be largely unaltered save a few improvement to pre-existing puzzles. The elevator jumps will be improved to make them easier to accomplish.

In somewhat related news: I'm expecting a new computer to be arriving in the mail later this week. With the inevitable time it's going to take to set up a new system, reinstall software like JA and GtkRadiant, and school starting the week after you should expect some significant delays on the development of the mod. Rest assured, we will continue to devote as much time as possible to the development of the next release. More information will follow once I have my new rig.

Monday, August 11, 2008

What's In the Next Build

I'm in the process of developing a new working build for the mod and as such I'm planning what will likely be included in the next release. All of this is tentative but any changes are likely to be the addition of more content than is currently in this list.

So, here we go:
  • Cutscenes between levels 1 and 2 will now feature the correct music tracks. Additional architectural improvements are being made to the rebel frigate conference room.
  • Misaligned and poorly aligned textures in Testbase are being corrected and portions of the terrain are being rebuilt to correct graphical errors.
  • A new build of detention center is under construction. This build will feature most of the gameplay and environments from the original with a few key areas completely rebuilt. It should provide a more visually exciting overall experience.
  • New level: "Ramses Hed Docking Port, Cal-Seti: Deadly Cargo." The complete seventh level of the original Dark Forces featuring new areas, puzzles, and enemies.
  • New game Icons optimized for hi-rez LCD monitors and modern GUI interfaces (read, Windows Vista quality).
There is currently NO ETR (Estimated Time of Release) for the next build but we are working to get things squared up as soon as possible.

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

JA CD Troubles

I'm in need of affordable solutions to running JA with a new CD or without a CD. Tonight, I noticed a large crack running from the center of the CD and before I could make a backup copy onto a DVD, my CD drive failed to recognize the disc. Normally, I make a backup of my games when the CD starts to get too scratched but I've taken pretty good care of this one and thus far, didn't need to make an extra copy. This problem cropped up literally out of nowhere and with the game officially out of print and used copies on ranging from $50 - $70 (in some instances for just the jewel case!!!) I need to find an alternative and much cheaper way to get a copy or a way to run the game without the CD (I can't recall Raven releasing any patches the make the game independent of the CD so doing this is probably illegal though I honestly don't know for sure). So, I'm asking for help. If you want DFMod to effectively continue production and you want a complete gallery for all the new levels, I'm going to need some assistance. Thanks.

UPDATE: I have a temporary solution so I can load the levels and take the screenshots I need for the gallery as well as test out lighting and architectural developments. I'm still trying to iron out some glitches - entities won't show up in game - but I have a few sources for backup copies of the game CD. Thanks very much to everyone who's volunteered their help and advice. It's much appreciated.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

I'll Bet It's Nice and Cool on Narshada

Hi folks. It's nearly 100 degrees here in New Jersey -- hotter, muggier, and more humid than it was in Florida last week.

But anyway, I'm back and DFMod is going to really start ramping up now. Work has resumed on Narshada and I'm putting together the online gallery. Everything will go up once I'm satisfied that the work is fully presentable but it won't be long now. I'm also going to be making a push for modelers to work on the Dark Trooper Phase 2, Kell Dragon, and terrain models for robotics facility (mainly re-texturing existing rock models for the other levels). Details about where and how to send applications will be forthcoming. Stay tuned!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Gallery Preview Images

Below are four preview images for our upcoming screenshots gallery. The gallery itself is long overdue and thanks to school I haven't had the chance to properly set up a photobucket or imageshack gallery or contact Darth Linux about acquiring administrative access to the original DFMod website. I'm going on vacation tomorrow (I'll be spending more than a week in Florida) so I won't have time to set up those galleries before the beginning of June. In the meantime, enjoy these previews of Ramses Hed, Robotics Facility, and Narshada! Click the "download" button on the left-side console to view the full-size images. It might take a while to load (DeviantArt can be notoriously slow on slower modem connections) so apologies to any 56k users out there.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Level Progress Updates

Screenshot galleries will be coming shortly but in the meantime, here is an updated progress report on each of the levels.

  • Ramses Hed: Approximately 85% of the level has been completed, and 100% of the original layout is done. Mainly, we need to add some new areas to the spaceport leading up to the entrance to the smuggler ship since the original started way too abruptly (and I have too many cool ideas to let them go to waste).
  • Robotics Facility: A mapper hasn't been assigned to this level yet but there is approximately 35% finished thanks to the original DFMod team's Karrackoo.
  • Nar Shada: New textures have been applied, architecture modified, and puzzles and enemies add. About 30% of the level is finished and fully playable and we've started working on some new areas.
  • Jabba the Hutt's Ship: Prospective team member Hhunter6 has been applying new textures and making adjustments to Salv's original map with some very nice results. You can check them out here:
  • The Imperial City: No progress. Only the landing pad area has been completed.
  • Fuel Station Ergo: No progress. The original version is likely to be scrapped.
  • The Executor: No progress. A 1/1 scale recreation of the level is available to the general public via the "extras" package from the first team (you can find it on the front page of the original website - and will serve as the basis for the final version.
  • The Arc Hammer: No progress. A new map will have to be built entirely from the ground up.
There you have it, folks. Screenshots of the Ramses Hed and Narshada levels should be up next week. Stay tuned!

Monday, March 31, 2008

Dark Forces Mod Lives

Welcome to the DFMOD blog, the number one source for developer's updates, information, and progress regarding the Dark Forces Mod for Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy!

What is the Dark Forces mod? For those of you not already in the know, Dark Forces Mod (or DFMod for short) is a total recreation of the Star Wars FPS classic Dark Forces. Originally released in 1995, Dark Forces set the industry standard for the First Person Shooter (FPS) genre and spawned the highly successful Jedi Knight series. Thirteen years later the original game is still being modified and has a small but highly active community of dedicated gamers. Those of us on the DFMod team feel that Dark Forces deserves to be brought into the twenty-first century complete with modern game play, physics, and graphics and are modifying the latest game in the series, Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy to bring you this classic gaming experience in a brand new way!

The project originally began in 2002 as a mod for the then latest game in the series, Jedi Knight 2. Since that time, the first six levels have been completed and released to the public but due to a variety of circumstances the original team has been unable to complete the full game. That's where we're stepping in. Our goal is to finish the remaining eight levels to the same standard of professional quality as the original team members. We've already made a lot of progress but there's still a long way to go.

In the coming days, weeks, and months you can expect:
  • What positions are available, how to apply for a position on the team, and policies regarding updates and submissions for prospective and active team members.
  • Screenshots featuring the latest development on the remaining eight levels including Ramses Hed spaceport, Jabba the Hutt's Ship, and Narshada.
  • On going news updates, developer's thoughts, and more!
In the meantime, if you haven't checked it out, you can download the six-level release from the original Dark Forces Mod website here:

Plans are in the works to acquire access to the website, FTP resources, and the remaining assets the new team will need to see this project through to completion. Stay tuned!

Dark Forces Mod lives!