As the storm of E3 approaches, so does our next big update for Warhawk and with it comes 2 entirely new gameplay modes for every map, including the Booster Packs – and these new gameplay modes are completely FREE!
Before I get into the meaty list of updates, let me start off by saying that Warhawk v1.4 will have its global simultaneous release very, very soon…how soon you ask?
In just about 48 hours — July 16th at 10:00 GMT (that’s 3am Pacific)
When we started designing the new modes, we looked at play styles could freshen up the Warhawk play experience. After all, Warhawk is now almost a year old :-) And after a few months of development and play testing, we’re ready to rollout 2 new gameplay modes that the team and I are incredibly happy with: Hero and Collection.
New Gameplay Mode “Hero”
This is a team-based game mode in which one member of each team is randomly selected to be their team’s Epic Hero. Players score points for their team by killing the enemy Hero or by killing enemies while they’re the Hero. The team that reaches the score limit first (or has the most points when time runs out) wins the game.
While you’re the Hero, you get some pretty incredible buffs…the mode’s called Hero after all so you’ve gotta be tough!
You get crazy high damage resistance which is like having 500% health. All of your weapons do twice the damage. And the armor-piercing values for your weapons are increased so that some weapons that normally can’t hurt vehicles like Tanks and Turrets, now can!
Now you aren’t the Hero for the entire game. Once you are selected as the Hero, you have a limited amount of time to go on your berserker-blitz-rampage-of-carnage-awesomeness. See the shots above for the Hero meter in the upper left-hand corner. Also note the crazy visuals that are rendered when you’re the Hero. You glow your team color, you emit light the same color as your team, you growl a scary sound that strikes fear in you’re your foes, and of course, energy sparks…must….have…energy sparks!!!
Scoring is simple: If a Hero kills a player, he scores 1 point for his team. If a normal player, or more commonly, a group of players, kills the Hero, 1 point is granted for the team. If a Hero kills the other enemy Hero, then 2 points are scored for the team.
Did I mention that Heroes are always displayed on the mini-map!?!?…and with a star no less!
Simply stated…this mode is wicked intense!
New Gameplay Mode “Collection”
This new gameplay mode is like multi-flag CTF. There are 4 energy cores scattered around the map, generally positioned in the center or between the 2 team’s main bases. Each team has a Reactor where Energy Cores are taken to score points.
In the screen shot above you can see 2 Energy Cores positioned on a Eucadian bridge. Bringing these Cores back to your team’s reactor will score points for your team…and you can carry more than 1 Core at a time.
The scoring system is progressive, so if you score just 1 Core, your team gets just 1 point. 2 Cores will score 3 points. 3 Cores are good for 6 points…and if you manage to work as a team and bring all 4 Cores back to the Reactor at once, then your team scores a whopping 10 points!
As you can see in the screenshot below, the Cores are displayed on your character and the more you are carrying, the more you see whirling and orbiting around you. You’ll also see them on the mini-map as pulsing energy symbols. The score is displayed in the upper right corner as usual, but there is a new display there for Collection mode. It’s the little yellow number that shows you how many Cores your team currently is currently carrying. This ends up being critical for knowing where your focus should be; Offense or Defense.
Collection mode is fun as @%! and really helps promote teamwork and yield some truly fantastic risk-vs-reward moments!…and you can press the TRIANGLE button to throw the Cores you are carrying! Passing Cores among your team is “super-effective” :-)
So that’s a quick run down of the new modes and we can’t wait to have our player around the world start playing 2 completely new ways to enjoy the fast-paced world of Warhawk!
Hmmm…what should I cover next?
While we were glad to provide players with very specific control of which games they join or host via our global server list, we wanted to provide an easier way for new and veteran players to get into their favorite games more quickly and easily….thus the new ‘Quick-Join’ feature.
Basically what this new feature does, and I imagine many of you have already figured it out, is automatically scan the server-list behind the scenes, pick a good game for you based on your connection, latency, current filter settings, etc. This all happens in just a few seconds.
This way, if you like playing CTF games *only* in base retail levels with no booster packs, you can set your filters and all you ever have to do from there on out is click ‘Quick-Join’. The ‘Quick-Join’ button honors *all* of your filters so you can really customize Warhawk’s automatic server selection.
If you are brand new to the PSN or to Warhawk you’ll have to play at least one ranked game the traditional server-list way, so that the servers can collect some stats before ‘Quick Join’ will work well for you. After that, you’ll be ready for hot, 1-click, automated server selection action! For those players you have already played Warhawk and the servers already have your stats, you’ll be good to go as soon as the patch is released.
For game modes like CTF, and the newly added Collection mode, we really need to clarify where you need to take the flag or core – we had received complaints that players could get confused as to where they needed to go. Warhawk now draws a much more prominent ring at the location where you need to return the flag or core. Additionally, the mini-map renders an animated green line that connects your ‘blip’ to the return location.
Rank & Award Updates:
Now we know this is a sensitive subject as it relates to how easy, or in our case, how hard it is to rank up, unlock some of the badges and be awarded any of the elite medals. With that said, we have made some changes to make ranking up a bit easier. Here’s a list of what we changed for the Medals and Badges:
- “Capture the Flag” Medal previously required 500 total captures, now it requires 250.
- “Capture the Flag” Medal previously required 5 captures IAR (In A Round) and now requires 2.
- “Capture the Flag” Medal still requires 500 flag saves.
- “Distinguished Air Combat” Medal previously required 10K total air-to-air kills and now requires 5K kills.
- “Distinguished Air Combat” Medal previously required 20 minutes IAR of flight time and now it requires 10 minutes.
- “Master Teamwork” Badge previously required 75 team points IAR and now requires 60 points.
- “Master Teamwork” Badge still requires 2K total team points
- “Warhawk Teamwork” Badge still requires 2K total team points
- “Warhawk Teamwork” Badge previously required 150 team points IAR and now requires 100 points.
We have also loosened the requirements, specifically point requirements, for some of the officer ranks. The changes to the point requirements for rank advancement are:
- “Major” previously was 150K now its 110K points.
- “Air Marshal” previously required 170K now its 130K points
- “Command Marshal” previously required 190K now its 155K points.
- “Lt. Colonel” previously required 210K now its 180K points.
- “Colonel” previously required 230K now its 210K points.
- “Brigadier General” previously required 250K now its 240K points.
Now we realize that there are many players who have logged several hundreds of gameplay hours – the team and I greatly appreciate your dedication to our game and it’s the dedication of our loyal fan base that helped make the development of these free game modes an easy decision!
The respawn rate modifier based on player count has been modified to take a longer period of time so that TOW missiles do not respawn as quickly in large player-count games.
Minimum Rank Server Option:
Warhawk official and player-hosted servers now support a MINIMUM rank along with the previously existing MAX rank.
Respawn Selection Hint:
I know it may sound odd to some of you avid Warhawk players but we actually noticed that there were a number of new players that didn’t realize that you could select a different spawn point when you died. This is primarily for new Warhawk players and this respawn hint is disabled if you have “Hints Display” turned OFF in your options.
Updates for Home Game Launching:
Now players that are launching/connecting to Warhawk games from Home can designate which team they will be assigned to before the server is started. Warhawk’s Support of Home Game Launching now also supports the new Hero and Collection gameplay modes.
Afterburner Flight to Hover Transition:
Previously, if you were flying the Warhawk (or Nemesis) with the afterburners engaged, you were disallowed from transitioning into hover mode. While this may have been a bit more realistic, Warhawk is more about fun than realism and not being able to transition into hover when you want to need to is frustrating! So now, you can switch to hover mode even if your afterburner is engaged.
Team Deathmatch Scoring:
The scoring system for Team Deathmatch previously counted base captures towards the team kill count/score. This is no longer the case and now *only* counts kills…as you would expect Team Deathmatch to do :-)
New “Winning Team” Ribbon:
In an attempt to further promote teamwork, Warhawk now awards a new ribbon to every member of the winning team. With this “Winning Team” ribbon, each player also is awarded an additional 50 bonus points.
Kick-Idle Player Server Option:
Warhawk now allows players to set an option on their own servers (player or dedicated) that will auto-kick idle players. Warhawk also now detects players purposely not respawning via the respawn exploit and will consider them idle as well.
So that’s a pretty good summary of the Warhawk v1.4 Update that’s going to be released world-wide on July 16th at 3am Pacific time (10:00 GMT). We really hope you like all the new updates ‘cause I sure know we had a great time making them for all of you!!! And FREE content is always a good thing!!!
Oh yeah…let me take a minute to clarify some stuff about our upcoming Warhawk v1.5 Update and our new Trophy support.
So, while I have just finished writing what is probably *way* too long of a blog post regarding the v1.4 Update…I need to talk about the v1.5 Update, specifically the Trophies. Here’s a quick breakdown of the 56 Warhawk Trophies:
There are 10 trophies based on current stats, ranks and awards and these 10 *ARE* retroactive. This is largely due to the fact that we have this data stored on our global Warhawk Server Cluster. There are 34 other Trophies that are entirely new ‘goals’ and should provide players with plenty of new challenges. And yes, Operation: Omega Dawn, Operation: Broken Mirror, and possibly a new something have new Trophies as well. Each booster pack has an additional 4 unique Trophies.
To earn the Warhawk Platinum Trophy, all you have to do is unlock the base game’s 44 Trophies…you do *NOT* have to buy any DLC to unlock the Platinum Warhawk Trophy. Forcing players to buy our DLC would be super-craptastic and completely unacceptable.
….hmmm, that’s about it for now. The Warhawk v1.4 Update is right around the corner!!
As always, Rock on!