News and announcements

Ares 2.0p1 Service Release available

Written for Ares by AlexB on 2019-04-14

This maintenance patch for Ares 2.0 fixes a few issues with Type Conversions, like when combined with the Operator feature. The parsing errors with PrismForwarding=forward and EMP.Threshold are fixed as well.

It also patches an original game bug in savegame handling with interactions of Palette and Image settings, makes selling units on UnitRepair structures consistent, and improves the Ivan detonation cursors.

Ares 2.0p1 is a drop-in replacement for Ares 2.0, and all existing savegames created with the major version are still compatible.


Ares 2.0 has been released

Written for Ares by AlexB on 2018-09-14

Converting unit types is now supported when deploying a vehicle, when units or infantry are promoted, or when they move from land to water or vice versa. That means helicopters deploying into movable tanks is now possible, as well as changing image, turret and weapons by deploying. This also means more than two veterancy levels can be imitated.

A lot of minor details have been added to earlier features, like more spy effects, warhead effect settings, and many more. The AISafeDistance has been split into two to customize the case to gather at the friendly base; likewise AffectsAllies has been split to customize when hitting the firing player. Insignia frames can now be customized by veterancy level, FactoryOwners.HaveAllPlans has been expanded to work with building upgrades. Also waves can finally look like in the original game agin, with an optional intensity setting to customize them further.

But there are also several new settings to fully customize build times per type, and animations can deliver damage by using weapons instead of warheads. There's many many more small features to try out.

Have fun with Ares 2.0!


Mission Accomplished: Ares 1.0 officially out

Written for Ares by AlexB on 2018-01-26

Today Ares reached a huge milestone: Ares 1.0, which finally restores support for savegames, has been officially released to the public.

Savegame related buttons in the menus have been enabled again, and using them to load a saved game will no longer crash. This was the last big missing piece to make Ares a superset of the original game, that is using Ares no longer takes away a fundamental feature the original Yuri's Revenge had.

Ares thus now officially leaves the implicit preview stage denoted by a zero in front of the version number, about 10 years after development of a replacement for RockPatch started in 2008. This is only a symbolic act though, as even in the preview stage the expansion dll was quite stable for all it added to and changed in Yuri's Revenge. Sometimes adding or adjusting minor things, sometimes turning large chunks of the game upside down.

No new features to announce here today. Maybe MissileSpawn now working on buildings. Again, there were some fixes for bugs, several stability improvements, optimizations and minor changes. This version should be more stable than the last, and it should in any case be a good base for future releases.

Thanks to all testers over all those years, who dedicated their free time to try out new logics and report numerous bugs and other issues. Thanks for confirming bugs as well as bugfixes, for proposing new features and voicing your opinions to improve them.

Finally, have fun with Ares 1.0 and savegames working again!


Ares 0.E has been released

Written for Ares by AlexB on 2017-09-14

Tunnel Networks known from Generals have been added, which allow several entrance buildings to share their contained units. Every entrance can be used to eject these units, allowing for quick and sneaky troop movements even between places that aren't connected by passable terrain, as well as for fast responses in case of an attack.

Gunner units like Infantry Fighting Vehicles have been somewhat expanded. With this release they support more than 18 modes, and each of these modes can have separate normal and elite weapons, tool tip names and even a distinct appearance with custom turrets and barrels. Also, an alternative way to define such modes has been added, which makes it easy to do more with fewer tags to set.

Kill Driver warheads are now applied like conventional damage, which means it finally supports CellSpread, so neutron shells as known from Generals are now possible. A new chance can be set to not kill the driver on every hit as well.

Warheads can be defined to have MAD Tank style damage delivery, which doesn't deal a fixed amount of damage, but instead uses a share of the targetet unit's or structure's current or maximum health.

In addition, more warhead effects have been added: Sonar temporarily prevents targeted units from cloaking, the target's weapons can be disabled for some amount of time, and another setting lets the target flash for no obvious reason as if it was being repaired. The bright flash when a nuclear missile detonates can also be optionally enabled for other warheads, or turned off for the nuke.

There are several new minor features like a sabotage effect for spies, a way to stop infantry from crushing tanks when chronoshifted or to protect certain vehicles from being crushed by chronoshifting units. Half a dozen new veteran abilities have been included to, for example, make elite units immune to radiation, poison, mind-control, or Kill Driver. And as if this wasn't enough already: the game's movies list can now be customized with more unlockable movies.

As always, more effort went into reworking existing features and improving performance, which should be noticable under heavy load. That's it for now, but there's more to come soon.


Ares 0.D is finally here

Written for Ares by AlexB on 2017-06-10

Finally, after about a year, a new version of Ares is ready for download, and finally it is another feature release, not just a minor service release.

With Ares 0.D, mouse cursors can be customized for weapons to give special attacks an immediately recognizable appearance. But not only that: units and structures can have custom cursors for moving, entering, deploying, and more. This way, ejecting passengers or occupants can be distinguished from triggering an area attack, and entering a Grinder can have another cursor than bunkering a tank. For this to work, Ares now has a centralized section to define mouse cursors, which as a bonus also allows to edit the original cursors in the game.

Mechanics as known from The Aftermath and Ambulances like the ones in Generals are now possible. This means the limitation that infantry was only allowed to heal other infantry and vehicles were only allowed to repair other vehicles has been removed. No longer is the workaround with positive Damage and negative Verses needed, and targeting and putting repair units in guard mode just works as expected.

AI players can be made to build more than one building of a type, which previously was only possible for special buildings like refineries, or using building clones to emulate this. Ares adds new options to support this directly, for each difficulty level, and also with some element of randomness. Pimp your AI by letting it build more War Factories. Also, the buildup and sell time of structures can now be customized, thus making slowly deploying buildings possible.

Not only can starting units be defined for a country using one central option, it is also possible to have a country start with a deployed Construction Yard instead of an MCV. This allows for new game modes with fixed starting positions or no MCVs at all.

Ares implements Death Bombs for the Crazy Ivan, which were apparently cut from the original Red Alert 2. With this special mode, bombs will not detonate after a certain amout of time, but will keep the bomb active until either disarmed, destroyed, or manually detonated.

That's not everything, though. As always, there is a bunch of smaller features completing this release. A plethora of bugs has also been fixed, both in the original Yuri's Revenge and in Ares. Several of Ares' features have been reworked and inefficient code has been updated to decrease its footprint. That's it for today.


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