As you may know, recently I had to put offline my project UDK Ultimate Engine (the custom build of UDK Engine with PS3 and Xbox360 Export Support) for copyrights reasons (EPIC asked me to do this), however, they were very kind with me and allowed me to keep using my custom version of UDK to publish my games, I even signed with them an Unreal Engine License Commercial Amendment, so now I am a Licensed Unreal Engine Developer and I am ready to pursue my dream of life!
DISCLAIMER: In this game, the player does not shoot Israeli civilians, women, children, elderly, only soldiers. Also in this game there are NO images of sexual content, illicit drugs, religious desecration, hate of speech against any group, ethnicity or religion, anti-Semitist propaganda against Jews, Nazi propaganda or boasting of any terrorist groups and / or other unlawful acts. This game only contains the virtual representation of the Palestinian Resistance Movement against the Israeli Military Occupation, which is officially recognized by the United Nations (UN). I even sent this project for Brazillian's Government Justice Department, Age Rating Sector (kinda Brazillian ESRB) for their approval and age rating. This project was approved, now I am just waiting for the Age Rating Information of my game which will be available very soon on their website (http://portal.mj.gov.br/ClassificacaoIndicativa/jsps/ConsultarJogoForm.do)
I am Brazillian, from Arab ascendance, my father is from Palestine, and something I never revealed before, and one of the biggest reasons of me creating this game, is that my father was a Fighter of the Palestine Resistance Movement, he fought against Israel Army in the Lebanese Civil War on the 70's, and from since I was a kid, I felt too much proud of my father and the Palestine People in General, because of their Strenght and Constant Resistance. So this game is kinda tribute to the Brave People of Palestine and their Resistance against Military Occupation.
Fursan al-Aqsa - Knights of al-Aqsa Mosque is a Third Person Action Game on which you play as Ahmad al-Ghazzawi, a young Palestinian Student who was unjustly tortured and jailed by Israeli Soldiers for 5 years, had all his family killed by an Israeli Airstrike and now after getting out from the prison he seeks revenge against those who wronged him, killed his family and stolen his homeland.
This game is being developed during the course of 4 years by one person (me, Nidal Nijm), in a custom version of UDK Engine (Unreal Engine 3), using the best technology to tell a compelling story through a game packed with non stop action, advanced 3D graphics and modern gameplay mechanics, however keeping the soul of old school shooters. You will play in missions accross ground, sea and sky, you have many objectives to accomplish in each mission, epic bosses battles, powerful guns, vehicles to drive, helicopters to take down, and much more. Expect a LOT of Action and Adrenaline!!!
This game also is greatly inspired by Hideo Kojima's Metal Gear Solid, Call of Duty Modern Warfare and Insurgency Sandstorm.
I hope you enjoy this game and support me by purchasing it, Insha Allah (God's Willing). I decided to release this game as episodes (missions), each mission by a symbolic value just to cover my development costs, as everyone knows that develop a game is not an easy task, it takes a lot of time and efforts. It will be a very small value, however any copy sold of this game is very important and will trully help me. Please buy this game to support me (whenever I release it), Insha Allah (God's Willing), because I trully need your help!
I hope untill the end of this month (november) release a free demo of this game (for PC, PS3 and Xbox360), so people can enjoy and feel what my game is about, enjoy the gameplay, feel the action. I plan to make something similar to Metal Gear Solid VR Missions (If you may remember), on which I will teach the player the basis of the Gameplay, like training the player for the true battle that will come on the final game. About the first episode (mission), I hope to release it untill the end of December, beginning of January 2020.
Now I will show you some trailers of the game itself, a beta version of this game. I am already redoing everything from scratch, remaking the models, animations, and maps, raising the overall quality, polishing things here and there, to deliver a high quality product for all people enjoy.
Also you can see the new updated model for my character protagonist, and the difference between the new player model and the old one, so you all can be sure I am commited to do my best on this game. These old models were just placeholders for me develop the basic game programming framework and features.
It's a remake of a Custom Map for Counter Strike Global Offensive, the map name is de_heat.
Whenever I create my maps, I like to take many games as reference, and I prefer to use Source Engine Games Maps, because it's easy to import on 3dsmax, and use the original map as a reference to model my map over the original map.
I have choosen this map, because it's similar to the real city of "Old Jerusalem", which is where the first mission of my game takes place.
However, I contacted the original author of this map from since I began creating this map in UDK Engine, last year. And he was very kind to me and gave me authorization to remake his map for my game:
However, as I told before, these screenshots of this map, and the gameplay trailers, are a bit outdated, because I am already working on chaing this map a bit, especially chaning some assets (props) which are from Valve (the devs of Counter Strike) and not from the map author.
I am replacing these assets with some assets created by me and others purchased on 3D Marketplaces arround the internet. This is very common especially for indie and solo developers, purchase assets, download royalty-free assets to use whenever developing a game.
Imagine if all indies would make games creating all the assets from scratch. You would not see so many indie games arround there.
The same is truth for my new updated protagonist model. This new updated model is a mix of character parts from many models, which I purchased recently to update my 3d models library, which was a bit outdated (the marjority of my old models were from the time of Counter Strike Source).
However, you may think: "Man, getting ready models to create a game is very easy, because you have done almost nothing". I must inform you that the truth is far away for this thought. In game development there is no a "copy and paste", or "plug and play" solution, just one click and your game is done! No, even using pre-made 3d Models, you will never get the model which you want to fit on your project unless you do the dirty work of modifying this asset to fit on your game. Yeah, there is a LOT of work to be done.
I have done a lot of manual changes on this model, in example, the head cover was untill the neck, however I wanted this headcover to raise down untill the chest, so I manually modelled that extra part to make it reach the chest. Also the original texture was a plain black, so I manually created in Photoshop this Shemagh Texture in red color, the traditional Palestine Head Cover. Also to add some more depth, I did bake some small shadows on the texture to make it look more realistic and give a kind of fake volume to this head cover.
Another change I have done, because I am using the default UDK Skeleton (Unreal Tournament 3 Rig), and the default Animation System in UDK Engine (UE3) is pre programmed to work with the UT3 Skeleton outside the box, I did manually rig the character mesh to the UT3 Skeleton, as you can see in the video. And the character arms I used for this model, were a bit larger than the UT3 Skeleton, so I had to manually reduce the arms lenght, thus repositioning the hands aswell, to fit perfectly to UT3 Skeleton (so I don't have to re-program the Animation System).
For those who accused my game of terrorist propaganda: I sent the game synopsis alongside gameplay to Brazillian Government Justice Department for Approval and Age Rating. My game was approved, and got Age Rating +18!
In game development is a common practice to use placeholder assets, which can be 3D Models, Textures and even Animations. Whenever I first began developing this game 2 years ago, I use the default UDK AnimationSet, which includes all the Character Animations used in Unreal Tournament 3. However, to give my game some originality, I decided to replace some of these stock UT3 (Unreal Tournament 3) animations by other animations from my Assets Library (which includes MOCAP animations from MegaMoCap, TrueBones, TurboSquid, NaturalMotion, and others).
I did not make too much polishments on these first animations I used, as I was just bored to look all time to the Default UDK Animations, so I just wanted something provisory, to polish later.
UDK/UE3 Engine has a perfectly working Animation System, pre-configured to work outside the box for a Shooter Game. One of these functions is what we call Aiming Profiles, which means, for any type of weapon the player carries, there are a different set of animations: in example, run forward rifle, run left pistol, rifle idle animation, bazooka run forward, and so on. For the sake of simplicity, I just replaced many of these stock UDK animationsby these new mocap files (retargetting these animations to the default UDK Skeleton in Motion Builder).
It would be very cool if using custom animations for UDK was just a matter of copy and paste. Even though the retargetting animations process is flawlessy inside Motion Builder, however, because of differences in skeleton size (UDK Skeleton x Custom MOCAP Skeletons), I had to manually edit each mocap animation to fit into UDK Skeleton. The fixes is just reposition of the character skeleton to fit and work flawlessly. In Motion Builder I just added a new animaton layer and added some key frame animations to fix the MOCAP, one by one.
Added to this, I did some Custom MOCAP using my Kinect Camera, as you san see in the video above. I must admit that is far better using professional captured MOCAP files than doing it yourself. I used Custom Kinect MOCAP files whenever I could not find, inside my assets library, the animation wanted, so it is time for "Do it Yourself". Again, after some (MANY) tweaks on these custom kinect mocap files, I got something good looking wich you can check aswell on the above video. And these will be the final animations for the game's protagonist.
I hope you are enjoying de follow the development of Fursan al-Aqsa.
P.S: If you did not vote yet for Fursan al-Aqsa, please vote now, it is disputing the Top 10 Indie Games of 2019, it is now the #1 of Upcoming Third Person Shooter:
Cheers and until Next Update!
13- Fursan al-Aqsa Ahmad al-Ghazzawi MOCAP Making Off.png
Today I began to sketchup some ideas of Maps for Fursan al-Aqsa Training Missions. Besides the Campaign Mode, I will add a Training Mode for my game with a LOT of Cool Missions, inspired by Metal Gear Solid 2 VR Missions (Kill All, Stealth, Weapon Shooting and Variety).
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