New site design: All the good bits and some more!

It's all change at PlanetJailbreak! We've decided it's time for a spring clean, and a fresh new look for the site.

We've kept the good bits of the PlanetJailbreak you all know and love. Like the Lockdown countdown clock. Like the cheese (it's still there... if you know where to look!). We've taken out the not-so-good bits, like the moose competition.

And we've added spiffy new stuff like the pic of the week: If you have cool Jailbreak screenshots, be they of maps in progress or exciting game moments, let us know!

We're off back to the Jailbreak bunker now for some more playtesting. Thanks RaptoR and Mychaeel for the new design!

Grandmothers, HUD design, and new PR guy tarquin

Image - Grandmothers, HUD design, and new PR guy tarquin

So there I am, talking to Mych, and he says "would you mind signing this get well soon card for my elderly grandmother, she's very sick and I've told her so much about you, it would really cheer her up to see her card's been signed by someone as l33t as you."
"Sure", I say, and I get my pen out.
"Ah, I forgot to say, my grandmother is really into all this wicca stuff, go figure, eh, so could you sign in blood? It would mean so much to her, and she is suffering so badly with the pneumonia..."
"Fair enough, bit weird but anything for a little old lady in hospital," I say, and sign the card.
Just then there's a puff of smoke, and Mych's eyes glow red.
"Bwahahahaha!!!!" he cries. He unfolds the card to reveal that I've just signed a contract... do PR for Jailbreak!

So I'll be keeping you all up to date on what the Jailbreak dev team is up to. At the moment, we're working on the finer points of the new HUD; you'll get screenshots when it's done. But it's not just the Jailbreak alpha that we're working on: there are all the maps and mutators that our team are busy cooking up. I'll be torturing... cough... politely extracting information from them for your delectation.

The hot news is that we expect to have a new version of the Jailbreak HUD done for next week. I'll let you know. In the meantime, here's a sneak preview of some new HUD icons: the team tactics. Instead of the linear "stance" setting seen in UT Jailbreak, there are different team tactics modes which determine the overall attitude of the player's bot teammates. These are, from the top left: evasive, defensive, normal, aggressive, and suicidal (for those desperate runs for the release switch!).

If you have any questions you want me to ask the team, you can email me or post in our General Forum.

In other news: Spoondog's moose is feeling homesick for the Alaskan wastes.

Alpha Update

Image - Alpha Update

Jailbreak 2003 Alpha 4 has been released to the team 2 days ago. Mychaeel once again implemented a lot of features such as the already mentioned Jailbreak mutator interface along with the Llama detection and a slightly different default execution method.

Jailbreak 2003 uses the "fell in lava" effect for fallback execution now: Players skeletize in a ball of fire. As you can see on the screenshot it's a pretty neat effect and a nice break from the default Jailbreak ]I[ gibbing. The flame effect appears regardless of the gore level, even with gore forced to none (as in the unmodified German version).

In Jailbreak 2003 spectators do spectate the execution sequence too. So unlike in Jailbreak ]I[ not only players but also spectators are switched to the execution camera during the execution sequence.

Bot behaviour was improved once again and bots now take enemy location hints. When enemy players give their position away (by triggering the release switch), freelancing bots take a guess about the enemy's most likely current position under consideration of their previous assumed positions and try to hunt the enemy down.
And as if this alone is not enough, bots even engage in jail fights. When jailed human players draw their primary default weapon (usually the Shield Gun), imprisoned bots will actively join the jail fight.

Finally this one goes out to all you mappers: We are always looking for people to support the UT Jailbreak team and are open for anyone who would like to contribute. If you think that you might have anything worth adding to the mod (mapping skills, coding or testing experience, or just plain good ol'e ideas and concepts), send an email to, tell a bit about yourself and why you'd like to become part of the Jailbreak 2003 development community ... and it may happen.

Jailbreak 2003 and some Sunday Lockdown Screenshots

Image - Jailbreak 2003 and some Sunday Lockdown Screenshots

Mychaeel released Alpha 3 of Jailbreak 2003 this morning. Compared to what we have already there seems rather little left to do. Game mechanics work (albeit the arena hasn't been tested yet at all), bot support works and is being tweaked with every alpha release, and we got a working HUD.

What's left to do is creating a scoreboard, a user interface for Jailbreak key bindings, completing bot support and adding a Jailbreak mutator interface in order to add "llama" and "release protection" mutators. And maps, maps, maps...

In other news our Sunday Lockdown is still very popular and crowded. If you don't believe me, check out Robin 'Rob' Pamart's fantastic screenshots from last night and -in case you have missed them- those from last week.

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