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Mental Omega News Bulletin #12 (24/02/2015)

There is much more to the development of the next Mental Omega than we can let you all in on for now. Not only are we working on fixing the issues reported in Mental Omega 3.0 and adding new units, new missions and cooperative maps for Act Two, but we're also looking forward to the return of the most needed feature for Mental Omega, which was unavailable so far for technical reasons. We're also awaiting full CnCNet 5 support for Yuri's Revenge in order to solve a lot of grievances with online play and make it work with our mod as well.

As with many big mod developments, everything relies on voluntary contributions from various people which require time. When all pieces are in place, all will be revealed and the balance of power will shift once more. When? Time will tell, sooner or later. Until then, you can help Yuri rise to power if you haven't already, or you can consider contributing to the mod to help speed up the release. 

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Due to our current texture artist being unavailable, we are looking for someone experienced with UVW maps and texturing 3D models who can help with finishing the work on a set of new buildings within the aesthetic style of the game. We already have plenty of finished models to work with, be it in 3ds Max or Blender.

For more information write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com

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We are also looking for additional Voice Actors for new units and missions as well as Red Alert 2/Yuri's Revenge Mission Scripters to help with the ambitious campaign project we are working on as a part of Mental Omega. Singular contributions are also welcome. Use the e-mail address listed above.
 

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Map Preview #35: (2) Action Reaction (urban; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #36: (2) Artificial Ice (snow; standard map pool) by Speeder
Map Preview #37: (4) Morales' Sanctuary (new-urban; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #38: (4) Tournament Island (temperate; standard map pool) by Speeder
 

The goal to reach the magic number of 400 quality skirmish/multiplayer maps becomes more of a reality every day. Hell, it's bound to happen as we are counting at 372 maps right now, so it's going to be a jump of ~100 new maps compared to the previous release. The above are 4 latest additions to the standard map pool, two from me, two from Toveena.

"(2) Action Reaction" and "(2) Artificial Ice" are two unique duel maps designed to force the players to make the most of various terrain features, choke points and neutral tech buildings in order to gain the advantage over the opponent. Additional paths for amphibious units, bridges and water zones created by the breakers form a maze open to many twists and turns. "(2) Artificial Ice" follows the style of the maps "(2) Bay War" and "(6) Bay of Pigs" with a simple urban angular layout, only this one is covered in snow. The urban elements of this map are parts of the enhancement to the snow terrain.

"(4) Morales' Sanctuary" is an addition to the long-planned set of maps dedicated to heroes of Mental Omega. We already had "(4) Tanya's Training Grounds" from the vanilla Red Alert 2 and "(5) Rahn's Dungeon", now Morales joins the ranks of heroes with a unique map named after them. "(4) Morales' Sanctuary" is loosely based on a popular map from Kane's Wrath where fighting for the center is something you must consider in your war plans.

"(4) Tournament Island" is a remake of a well-known Command & Conquer map, where battles are fast-paced and short, navy deals a lot of pain and resources are limited. Be careful for amphibious and flying units when constructing defenses around your zone! The Artillery Bunkers will not protect you forever, but might become useful tools to taking control over the gems in the center.
 

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Now, this is something we're working on although the firepower and presentation might vary in the final release. The chaos logic will be used for something different, so we want to give these cute little creatures a new, better purpose. What better purpose is there than blowing stuff up?

 

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Oh hey, I used to play online too, some months ago. I don't as much anymore, at least until the next release, so if you see a Speeder on CnCNet4, you can be sure that is not me. ;)

UprisingJC & Speeder vs AdmiralPit & Ordos
on '(4) Heartland'

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Posted on February 24, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 0

Mental Omega News Bulletin #11 (16/02/2015)

Great news for Red Alert 2 & Yuri's Revenge modders! Ares 0.9 has been released! AlexB delivers more superweapon customization including better AI support, inhibitors, and multiple SWs on a single building or upgrade, more than 8 facings for SHP based units and weapon muzzle flashes, as well as animated rotating projectiles. So my only question is: why aren't you modding the game yet?

I do not recommend upgrading from Ares 0.4 to any newer version for Mental Omega 3.0 BR1, especially if you are planning to continue playing multiplayer. Some tags for the Ares features have changed in the meantime and of course using a different Ares version than other players online will result in a desynchronization. A new Ares version will be officially supported with the next release.

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It seems a Mental Omega fan has started a TVTropes page for the mod and several more have already contributed. If you are familiar with the tropes, feel free to expand the article for others to read. I must say I am surprised at how accurate and spot-on the information is in all of the sections available so far, and that's including the YMMV one.

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Now before you give the Mental Omega page a (long) read I suggest you take a look at what we've been working on recently.
 

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So at the beginning of post-BR1 development I thought we wouldn't have too many new cooperative missions for the next release but Sandman is proving me wrong as he has prepared his third cooperative map so far and there are several others coming from other mission scripters. Perhaps I'll have a go at another coop myself in the near future. If there's anything you'd like to see in a cooperative mission be sure to leave us a comment!
 

Co-op Mission: Balance of Power

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The amount of Battleships under Allied control during the war with the Soviets was limited, but enhanced production of these powerful units has been started in order to dominate the Soviets in naval combat. Unfortunately, the Soviets managed to gain the upper hand and drive the Euro Alliance to the British Isles before the plan was fully realized.

Furthermore, the Soviets were able to capture one of the Allied ports where more Battleships were being produced and commandeered the local units. With Battleships supporting their Dreadnoughts, they might just be able to break through the Allied defenses surrounding the Great Britain. It's up to you and a fellow Allied commander to make sure those Battleships don't stay in Soviet hands.

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 So as you might have noticed in the last news bulletin that there was a new structure on the '(2)' Steadfast' map preview and today's '(8) Icy Trinity'. That new building is the Tech Nuclear Plant created by Nooze, which provides 1000 power units on capture but explodes almost just as violently as the Soviet Nuclear Reactor. 

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Map Preview #32: (2) Dune Patrol II (desert; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #33: (4) Double Patrol (desert; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #34: (8) Icy Trinity (snow; standard map pool) by Toveena

So Toveena kept insisting that '(2) Dune Patrol' is still possibly one of the most popular maps in Mental Omega 3.0 so he got the bright idea to adjust its "axis" by 90 degrees and also make a double version of it afterwards as well. '(2) Dune Patrol II' and '(4) Double Patrol' are both extensions of the well-executed idea from the vanilla game and we have high expectations for these maps to also become popular among players who strive to play Mental Omega in a more competitive manner.

Looking at the list of maps we have previewed, it appears that '(8) Icy Trinity' is actually the first new 8-player map we're showing. It is a large map with plenty of neutral tech structures and resources at locations tricky to hold and defend. As you can see, harvesters at any of the ore or gem fields are vulnerable to fire from the cliffs above so better be careful and make sure those cliffs are under your control. There's also several Tech Base Expansion Posts for players to fight for.
 

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Here's a nice team game on one of the most popular maps in MO, '(4) Double Malice'.

UprisingJC & Ultra7 vs ShadowE & LibraPalm

on '(4) Double Malice'

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If you'd like to help develop Mental Omega further, write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com
Right now we're in need of additional Voxel Artists, 3D Artists, Mission Scripters and Voice Actors.
Single contributions are welcome. 

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Posted on February 14, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 1

Mental Omega News Bulletin #10 (2/02/2015)
There's been a lot of development in the shadows, the results of which we continue to reveal to you piece by piece. Defeated but not done for, the Allies continue to arm up!

There is a new late-game addition coming to all Allied subfactions - the Experimental Warpshop. This unique structure, of which you will only be ableto have one at a time, will provide you with additional support powers based on chronoshifting technology. These support powers will be revealed in a short video in the future. Additionally, it will grant the Allies access to the teleporting troops which form the Chrono Legion, a key piece to their plan for victory in Act Two. The expansion of chrono technology might just give the Allies the technological edge they need to break free from the London Fortress, their bastion and prison, and seek revenge on their enemies. The artwork for it was created by Nooze.

The Gun Turret has received a long overdue makeover, also by Nooze.

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Allied Experimental Warpshop & new Gun Turret


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We are improving the old cooperative missions and creating new ones as well to cover the side stories of the campaign. Unlike the single player campaign, there is no set amount of new cooperative missions we will be adding in the next release.

After receiving feedback on the experimental first set of 18 cooperative missions in the first release, we've decided to reduce the playtime of cooperative maps to approximately 30 minutes max because of the lack of save/load capabilities in multiplayer modes and potential disconnection issues. We will also define the objectives more clearly and give hints for both players in the next version. If you have any additional thoughts regarding the cooperative missions do let us know.

Co-op Mission: Downfall

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As the Soviet victory in Europe seems inevitable, it is up to two Allied commanders to delay their advance towards the English Channel. A defensive perimeter is set up in the northern France to prevent a significant enemy taskforce from reaching the shore.
While the downfall of France is just a matter of time, if the Soviets were to gather enough firepower in the English Channel, their attack on the Gladius System might succeed resulting in no protection against the MIDAS bombs and failure of Operation Sunlight. This co-op was created by Sandman.
 

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Map Preview #29: (2) Steadfast (temperate; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #30: (4) Overcome (temperate; standard map pool) by Mevitar
Map Preview #31: (6) Perseverance (temperate; "Fortress" map pool) by Toveena

First, '(6) Perseverance' came to be, the first real 4vs2 'Fortress' map and it was grand and great. So grand and great, the island alone could have worked as an interesting 2-player map and so '(2) Steadfast' happened. The Mental Omega map pool grows every week, heading straight for the 400 map count. With the addition of Toveena's '(6) Perseverance' the unwritten rule I've had that 'Fortress' maps should always pit many players against one has been broken, adding more variety to the mode. More maps with different team setups might follow.

'(4) Overcome' is the first new map in a while from Mevitar and it is loosely based on a battlefield from one of his favourite RTS games that are not Command & Conquer. In Mental Omega it serves as a strict 2-on-2 map with many potential base expansion points which might be vital to your victory, considering the limited amount of resources available at the starting positions. The map has lots of choke points formed by the unique cliff formations and encourages creating strong defensive settlements.
 

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Not familiar with Mental Omega multiplayer? Starting from this week I'll be spotlighting interesting matches from Mental Omega which have been recorded and uploaded on YouTube.

UprisingJC vs ShadowE on '(2) Dune Patrol'

See many more of UprisingJC's multiplayer matches on his YouTube channel.
You can also watch ShadowE play and commentate on Mental Omega 3.0 on his Twitch channel.

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If you'd like to help develop Mental Omega further, write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com
Right now we're in need of additional Voxel Artists, 3D Artists, Mission Scripters and Voice Actors.
Single contributions are welcome. 

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Posted on February 2, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 0

Mental Omega News Bulletin #9 (19/01/2015)

Welcome back, Proselytes. It is time to reveal the next weekly news bulletin to you.
The development of Act Two continues.
 

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An unindentified object has entered the Earth's atmosphere. Its estimated destination has been determined by the Chinese navy who patrols the Pacific Ocean. Whatever it is, it's heading straight towards a location which turns out to be a PsiCorps fortress on the Exillian Island. The object is of utmost importance to Yuri's cause so the PsiCorps prepares for defense. The further direction of the Mental Omega War will be decided in.. 

Operation: Dance of Blood

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By revisiting the iconic location from the Yuri's Revenge campaign, Operation: Dance of Blood gives us an opportunity to create an even more interesting reversal, in a very literal sense. The player is now controlling the PsiCorps forces who reside on the island, while the Soviet attackers strike from all sides and will establish bases at three locations which you could choose between in the original mission. The reversal does not end here, as instead of launching the space shuttle, PsiCorps will now try to land one. What exactly is the cargo Yuri is having sent from space? No one knows yet, but the Chinese might be the first to learn. Whatever it is, it will heavily weigh in on the outcome of this war.
 

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Map Preview #25: (2) Flood (temperate; "Islands" map pool) by Speeder
Map Preview #26: (3) Unfair Advantage (new-urban; "Fortress" map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #27: (6) Loaded Dice (desert; "Islands" map pool) by Speeder
Map Preview #28: (6) Stronghold Prime (new-urban; "Fortress" map pool) by Toveena


It's a special modes map special! We have not forgotten about the additional game modes and we're continuously expanding their map pools with additional entries. New "Islands" mode map '(2) Flood' is the answer to a question nobody asked: what would happen if '(2) Drought' was filled with water? There would be water everywhere! Oh, and additional cliffed elevations would appear.. for no reason. Plus, of course, the players would escape from the lower area to the elevated one to avoid the flooding of their bases. Sticking to your starting location for the entirety of the match might not be the best idea considering the amount of valuable resources and other goods located on the smaller islands.

'(3) Unfair Advantage' is a remake of the Tiberium Wars map and a new addition to the Fortress game mode which has been revamped and all of the clones of standard maps have been replaced with new unique entries. Additionally, the amount of resources, defenses and freebie tech buildings given to the defender has been normalized in all of the maps in this mode, although with the rising amount of players the defenders might get additional special boons which vary from map to map.

'(6) Loaded Dice' is another new "Islands" map with a unique design that puts emphasis on defending the choke points in both water and land areas. The naval fights will take place out in the open, however the deciding factor will be the ability to break through a side's defenses. The possibilities to attack from the ground are limited, however you can be sure land units will be used to fight for the additional resources.

'(6) Stronghold Prime' is the ultimate "Fortress" map which pits 5 players against one poor defender who has to rely on a specific construction of his location and the bonuses he receives at the very beginning. With the initial upgrade to his defender, the defender might want to create more turrets than in any other "Fortress" maps and the possibility to place them on the concrete cliffs is another reason why he should do so.
 

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If you'd like to help develop Mental Omega further, write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com
Right now we're in need of additional Voxel Artists, 3D Artists, Mission Scripters and Voice Actors.
Single contributions are welcome. 

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Posted on January 19, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 0

Mental Omega News Bulletin #8 (12/01/2015)

I've asked recently what Mental Omega players' TOP 3 favorite units are. If you haven't voiced your thoughts on this matter yet, you might still do before I take a closer look at the results and reasons behind them, either in the comments here, on our Facebook page or here at ModDB. The most favorite unit will of course be removed, as it's probably the most overpowered one, yup.
It's Wolfhound, isn't it?

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The Mental Omega story continues! The necessary mission remake is revealed today.
 

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The gods are kind and have allowed the Allies to tame the powers of nature. A mission that has been in the making for a long time, long before even some of Act One missions were finished, will finally take place during the Act Two. The Allies need their Weather Controller and despite the destruction of the Weather Crystals, the Pacific Front was finally able to complete the weapon. Its presence did not go unnoticed however, and now the enemy is coming to take it down before it becomes operational. 

Operation: Stormbringer

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Something we did several times in Act One was reverse the roles of the player and AI in remakes of original missions from Red Alert 2, and it's a thing we'll do again with Operation: Stormbringer. It will be your task as the commander of the Pacific Front forces to defend the Weather Controller from enemy attacks and use its devastating powers to destroy their bases. Lucky for you, it will not be possible to destroy the device with a single tactical nuke.

Or will it? The mission in Red Alert 2 was way too easy because of that, perhaps now it is time for you to be in the shoes of the Allied commander whose hopes are easily dashed with a single nuke.
 

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Map Preview #22: (2) Tournament Tower (new urban; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #23: (2) Pipeline Problem (desert; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #24: (6) Power Shift (urban; standard map pool) by Speeder

We've been on a 6-player Collection & Creation rampage recently, since we've noticed quite a demand for these kind of maps and a large disproportion between the amount of 2-player, 4-player & 6-player maps in Mental Omega. '(6) Power Shift' is another new addition to the set and it's a 3v3 team game map with a rather.. unique layout, I'd say. The map is really fun to play against the AI which will stop at nothing to deny you control over the important locations on the map. There is only so much you can do with the Oil Derricks and ore located at your starting position so expanding further to collect the gems and more Derricks is a must. Taking the Concrete Fortresses and special tech buildings might help you secure those locations.

Toveena has recreated two other 2-player maps from Tiberium Wars, namely the '(2) Tournament Tower' and '(2) Pipeline Problem'. No, destroying the Seismic Stabilizer on the former will not destroy everything else on the map, it is located in a seismically inactive region and the device is no longer working. It's just there to block easy movement for your ground forces with its rather larger size.
 

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With the Ares tags EnemyInsignia=, Insignia.ShowEnemy= and customizable insignia for every veterancy level, I've done some modifications to fix several problems and improve other minor aspects of the game. Right now, no insignia on your unit is visible for your enemy to conceal their status or presence on the battlefield. Units hiding in the trees or behind buildings will no longer be exposed because of their veteran or elite status.

All hero infantry gain a special insignia on the basic level to help you find the unit in a crowd. Libra, thanks to the new special symbol for heroes can now be easily spotted by the user in a group of Libra Clones, which on the other hand will no longer display the weird 3-square symbol they had in Beta Revision 1. A unique symbol also applies to spies - you will now be able to see an eye symbol next to your and your allies' infiltrator units. You will not see this symbol on enemy spies and neither will units which detect disguise reveal it. The look of these symbols might change.

I've considered something similar for the Engineers, but since you can disguise your spies as them and the insignia wouldn't carry over, it would be too easy to spot the "false Engineer". 

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If you'd like to help develop Mental Omega further, write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com
Right now we're in need of additional Voxel Artists, 3D Artists, Mission Scripters and Voice Actors.
Single contributions are welcome. 

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Posted on January 12, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 0

Mental Omega News Bulletin #7 (5/01/2015)
Happy 2015! The end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015 has seen a rise in the amount of players on the Mental Omega multiplayer servers. Have you been enjoying it?

All services available for the players have been provided by CnCNet, which is rapidly becoming the #1 choice for classic Command & Conquer multiplayer gaming. After the upgrade to CnCNet5, efficient online gameplay is available for Tiberian Dawn, Red Alert and Tiberian Sun with Yuri's Revenge support to come. When the time is right, Mental Omega will rely on CnCNet5 as well, providing you with more stable multiplayer, additional game customization options and more.
 

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As of January 4th 21:20 (CET), CnCNet's player peak rose to 512, which is a very impressive number if you ask me. For more information on CnCNet and how to play the classic Command & Conquer games online, visit their new shiny website. You can also follow CnCNet on Facebook and Twitter. The first three C&C titles are available for free so the only thing stopping you from playing online is a few clicks.

In other news, we are looking for voice actors again! There'll be new units in the next release which will require new voice overs. If you are interested, send a voice demo to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com

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Now, let's show you some things we've been working on recently.
 

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At the end of Act One, the powers have shifted. The European Alliance has fortified itself in Great Britain, the Russians emerged victorious over their foes and control most of the continent, the Chinese struggle to hold power in the Far East and the army of the United States is but a shadow of its former self after the devastating attack on Chicago. The question remains: where's Yuri? He's still out there. He's preparing for.. 

Operation: No Dilemma

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 2 years after the Russian victory over the Chinese rebellion and fall of the Euro Alliance forces in the mainland continent, Yuri returns and reveals Russia's lies that kept everyone in check for so long. When the dust settles down, the enemies of Russia realize the king is no more and once again the world plunges into chaos.

The new 'No Dilemma' mission is loosely based on the original from Mental Omega 2.0, in which Yuri's forces reveal themselves to the world and conquer the city of Moscow. While the original did not include the part in which Shadow Tanks sabotage Moscow's power sources, this one will. We've remade the map of Moscow from scratch with the use of expanded snow terrain to resemble the capital city closer than the map from Red Alert 2. The Red Square is not just a tiny building, but a properly structured field that includes the GUM and Lenin's Mausoleum, the artwork for which was created by Nooze.

'No Dilemma' is chronologically the first mission of 'Act Two' and is the first of many events which will later be referred to as The Mental Omega War. Act Two will consist of 36 new missions.
 

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Map Preview #19: (2) Frontier Duelists (urban; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #20: (6) Battlebase Hexis (snow; standard map pool) by Toveena
Map Preview #21: (6) Misery Malice (desert; standard map pool) by Toveena


Toveena once again proves his skills in Red Alert 2 skirmish map design and expands the Mental Omega map pool with these three additions. '(2) Frontier Duelists' is a simple but unique map which gives an opportunity for fast open gameplay while demanding control of important expansion points. Capturing the Base Expansion Post near the gems and placing your first Ore Refinery there might just be the move that will give you the advantage. The water breakers placed around the island limit movement of amphibious & hover units while making aircraft more important.

'(6) Battlebase Hexis' is another map which relies on the urban expansion of snow terrain and it's a remake of the Red Alert 3 Uprising map. While this one doesn't have the special futuristic features of the original, the layout was closely recreated to resemble it in detail with the snow urban cliffs. '(6) Misery Malice' is the expansion of the fan favorite 'Twisted Malice/Double Malice' maps, adding two players to the top. Each of the confronting players from the left and right side can fight for a unique healing structure.
 

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Speaking of 'Operation: No Dilemma', here's how the original mission went in version 2.0 from 2005.


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If you'd like to help develop Mental Omega further, write an e-mail to mental.omega.apyr@gmail.com
Right now we're in need of additional Voxel Artists, 3D Artists, Mission Scripters and Voice Actors.
Single contributions are welcome. 

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Posted on January 4, 2015 by Speeder - Comments: 0


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