Progress Update No.3

Welcome to our third progress update for the SQUAD Bundeswehr Mod! I´m LieutenantK, the project manager of the mod. If u are new here, have a look into our previous updates about our project:

The ones who followed our progress closely, might have noticed a somewhat slower or different pace of our development and not as much posts at our Mod-Art channel recently. I´d like to begin with the reasons for it, so we can focus on all the new toys and awesome development of our German faction afterwards. Let´s get to it!

A new phase for our Team

Back in summer 2020, we got into serious discussions about how we want to deal with this mod and the value it eventually adds to the game. While nobody who began this project was in it for the money to begin with, we came to realize the audience SQUAD has reached with over 1 Mio sold copies back in 2019 and the quality our artists were outputting. Since Offworld Industries (OWI) seemed interested in buying new factions (example: CAF, ADF) for the game, if they meet certain quality criteria, and due to the fact the German gaming market is the fifth largest on the planet, with a yearly revenue of 6 Bn $, we took the common decision to professionalize our efforts and make sure our artists will receive their fair share, if any profit is beeing made with our assets. Another consideration for creating binding contracts and NDA´s was a incident, which happened roughly 6 month after we started.

When we tested Fulda Gap the first time with roughly 20 players, FPS tanked to 35 even for good systems, partly because of decisions a level designer made by himself and against the advice of other team members. The level designer went off the rails, because we pointed out he wasn´t following our quality agreement. He started a personal vendetta and threatened us with lawsuits, if we would use anything he touched. By that time, we had 4 more Leveldesigners and 4 – 6 environment artists who have put in hundreds of hours together. Eventually the team decided to re-do everything, to avoid any legal shenanigans with him and of course to solve the performance issues from the get go. While this was extremely hurtful for everyone involved, as you might guess, it stalled our progress considerably.

After this experience, we decided to eventually create contracts and NDA´s for everyone, regulating issues like the before mentioned. When we began to restart the work on the map, i promised the team to get this done as quick as possible. When this decision was made, Jinjer decided to leave the team. Plainly spoken, he didn´t want to be part of a commercialized project and he took his assets with him – the G36 set, the G28, the Panzerfaust and the P8 service pistol. Our motivation was at an all time low, as you might imagine. If you wonder why we didn´t talk earlier about these difficult times, it was my personal decision to keep this, until we got solutions for our losses. We didn´t want to bother our fans with crap (sorry for the strong language) like that. So here we go. We solved our issues, got everyone under contract with my Design Studio, hired new talents and found new lead modders within ourselves.

Since i am the lead environment artist and “product owner” of our team, work on Fulda Gap stalled for the time beeing. Creating a fair share-of-profit model, writing contracts and talk everything through with all the modders was very demanding for me and took most of the free time i could reserve for the mod (i am a self employed full time architect in RL). We are glad we got this sorted out by now and i am proud to announce two new artists: Art0mis started working on a new G36 set just one month ago – the results are breath taking, as you can see below. Also new, as of today, Hank recently started working on a new MP7 model for the faction. They will be helped by our new Lead 3D Artist Lynx – some of you might remember his superbé job on the KM2000 combat knife and the frag grenade of our faction. He is working for a professional game studio and decided to help us out with his knowledge. Another new addition to our Lead modder team is AK-116. He is the Co-Lead-Leveldesigner now and will help us organize the map development. Guys, we are grateful for the effort you are putting in! A big shoutout from me goes out especially to our Cpt.Brotzeit – You are a great artist and friend! I don´t know if we would be where we are today, without you.

As we hushed away any bad juju lingering around the project, let´s get back to the fun part of this update! I am excited to present our progress below:

The main rifle of the Bundeswehr

Our new HK G36A3 is coming along great. One can see Art0mis professionalism as mechanical engineer here. Mind, this is a early model – it is a work in progress. Anyways: Awesome precision here! Keep it up.

New Re-worked Character Models

Each role will get it´s own unique character model. This includes some of the sub roles such as squadlead V1 and V2. We will make sure, typical ethnicities and genders which can be found within the bundeswehr, are represented in our faction as well.

Thanks to our donors, we could acquire the FAST Helmet with hearing protection and headset. We also bought specialized character software, which helps us achieving this new level of realism for SQUAD. Brotzeit made the new Flecktarn camo scheme and is creating these awesome nearly photo realistic characters. Pan_Ulan helps with the textiles. Again: Awesome job!

We are especially proud to present a premier for SQUAD: A female character! Our combat medic will be the first female fighter character in the game. Another female character (one of the pilots) will be presented later that year.

Today, girls train, fight and die in modern western armies with incredible professionalism on a regular basis, just like men. Now they will get a visible representation in SQUAD too. We hope especially the girls playing SQUAD like what we are doing here!

Our characters are becoming so life like, we would like to give them proper names too. If you would like to give us your idea for fitting German names, join our Discord and write your idea into the specific name proposal channel.

The soldiers nightmare is back

Check out or new FOB Asset: The MG3 on a “Erdziellafette”, a buffered MG-Tripod for firing from behind cover. To take it out, you will have to do smart flanking manoeuvres and make good use of grenade launchers or AT-Weapons. Here you can see it in action in real life.

Awesome details, made by our armorer Poliack. After finishing the M120 Tampella mortar, he is providing our faction with another unique FOB asset. At 1,200 rounds per minute and laser like precision, this will clearly be a pain in the a** of it´s enemies and great fun for whoever uses it!

Below, you can see a screenshot from the height adjustment of the tripod. We made sure one can use it from behind several covers, which can be found on our map.

New unique Level assets

Speaking of cover – we got a little something-something going on here! We are creating a new set of bunkers and trenches, not just for our map, but hopefully for all SQUAD modders to be used, one day. I made extensive research in bunker development of WW2 and the cold war era. I made use of my knowledge as architect / construction engineer and my previous visits to sites like the french maginot line and others. Our bunkers are inspired especially by Japanese, German and Swiss bunkers from WW2, but also by rather unknown and secretive structures from the later cold war era, which still can be found all over europe. This MG bunkers layout includes two gas locks, a resting room, a guard room with a working MG embrasure, to guard the entry, and the main battle room – you will be able to set up the bipod of your MG and do your job at both fighting positions.

Another level prop: An aged power substation, reconstructed after a real life version from the town Uttrichshausen, which is situated on our Fulda Gap map as well. Awesome work Cpt. Brotzeit! More of our new level assets and our development process will be visible with the next update.

Our fleet is growing

Let´s have a look at our newest vehicle developments, shall we?

Many of you might remember our re-worked Leopard 2A6M model from the last update. As per request of you guys, it is now available as 4K wallpaper! Follow the link to get it and thank our Community manager Deadinside for providing it.

New to the fleet: The Waffenträger (weapons carrier) Wiesel MK20, with it´s 20 mm auto cannon. Originally made to be dropped out of airplanes and the CH53 to support the German Fallschirmjägers (paratroopers), it supports the Jäger Infantry units all over Germany. It is nimble enough, to get through dense forests, tight mountain passes and narrow alleys from the dark ages. It might be weakly armored, but it´s small size and great speed helps it navigate intense battle spaces. Mind: They are there to be used in combined armes warfare, close to the infantry. It´s brother, the Wiesel TOW with ATGM and open top MG3, will follow with another update hopefully this year. Their in-game equivalent is the BRDM vehicle family.

Our HANS trucks are now equiped with open top MG3 turrets, like their real life counter parts. We decided to include this feature, since every Bundeswehr truck close to a battle zone is supposed to defend it´self from infantry and low flying planes such as helicopters. Gone are the days of easy-prey loggy runs. The russian KAMAZ Trucks will receive a similar update by us, just to even the odds.

The boxer received some paint! It is not finished yet, but the artist was kind enough to share it with us. We hope you like it as much, as we do. It will give the infantry a quick transport, while providing next level protection against mines, IED´s and up to 30 mm auto cannons.

Last but not least, a sneak peak into the development of the FLW200 remote weapons station. In my mind, this piece of work is a mechanical master stroke by our artists. This level of detail is unseen with SQUAD to date. We will put it on the Boxer GTK and the Dingo 2.

Stand by for more of this with the next update!

LieutenantK out!

PS: If you want to support us, you can donate via the pay pal link or you can simply spread the word – we are looking for new artists to work on vehicles and weapons again! Note: Any donation will be used for assets or licenses only and not for paying anyone.

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