P.U.R.E. (Nothing To Do With ATVs)

By Alec Meer on September 23rd, 2008 at 5:04 pm.

BOOMSPLODE

Keep meaning to give this a play, but a heinous work overload currently forbids it – so I’ll post about it anyway and hopefully follow up with impressions later. Despite sharing a name with that PS3 ATV thing, it’s actually an entirely free RTS – built on the Spring engine – with ambitions of Total Annihilation/Supreme Commander-scale battles. And it’s about blowing up robots, so I like it already. Download the newly-out release candidate 2 of P.U.R.E. from here (it’s 260Mb), find out more about it here, and watch a trailer beneath the cut.

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33 Comments »

  1. TheLordHimself says:

    Looks interesting but I’m quite confused why people think N.A.M.E.S L.I.K.E T.H.I.S are cool?

  2. espy says:

    Ooh, Spring on RPS :D I used to play Spring like crazy a couple of years ago. Pure might make me install it again :)

  3. nakke says:

    with that PS3 ATV thing

    Pure, the ATV game, is actually available for PC and 360 too.

    This seems cool indeed, but I’m with Lord on the name.

  4. Weylund says:

    So it’s like Battletech + Heavy Gear, in a fairly realistic RTS form, for free.

    They could charge $10 and make a ton.

  5. perilisk says:

    I always thought, and I would tell Chris Taylor if I met him, that they should really go the Spore route — implement a Battletech style strategic mech design system, layer on a lot of purely superficial artistic customization, and let you upload and share units with other players. Then, for any game (possibly excluding single player campaign games), you assemble a set of units like Magic players assemble a deck.

  6. Stromko says:

    The mecha highly resemble a blend of Battletech and HeavyGear but I’m pretty sure they’re actually trying to ape a standard dirt-farming RTS in the vein of Total Annihilation and Supreme Commander. Not a bad thing, but hardly a tactical game like BT or HG, it’s more about managing your economy and just throwing a mess of units around.

    I was pretty disappointed with the mass unit movement in the video, way too much bumper-cars going on with hovertanks bashing useless into the back of mecha legs as they all try to get to their destination in a confused mob. Some way to implement proper cohesive formations or at least everything moving at the same speed so they arrive at the same time is critical to a sense of tactics in an ‘epic’-scale RTS game.

    The earlier part where the front lines of the formation stops to fire and blocks the rest of the units from helping is also a bit silly, probably the result of an attack-move rather than a standard move but it just seems too old-school. A single line formation of sufficient length could savage an entire drunken convoy of units, so long as that attacking army all moves up 3 or 4 at a time, stops, and fire until they die.

    Haven’t we reached the point where we expect a little intelligence from our RTS units? It would’ve been nice if they fanned out or just kept moving and allowed the back ranks to attack. On the other hand, a regular move order might work the same way so long as they remembered to let units both move and attack at the same time ala Total Annihilation/SC

    On that note if they want to go more of a battletech / heavygear route with their unit design I should hope they’re giving a lot of the units multiple weapon systems that are used at different times or frequencies. For instance having both an arced trajectory rocket launcher and a direct-fire autocannon could be very useful for a formation of ‘mechs so that the back ranks could attack while the front ranks had an immediate, hard-hitting weapon.

    I suppose the length of this post betrays that I’m intrigued by the concept, just underwhelmed by what I’ve seen.

  7. Radiant says:

    @perilisk
    I would play that until my fingers and hands fell off.
    I’ve fallen completely in love with card/deck type of games.
    I still hate fantasy games and rpgs but card games are gorgeous to play.
    I’m currently making my way through, ironically enough, Yggdr Union but the best deck game I’ve ever played was Metal Gear Acid 2.
    Once you get over the initial wtf’ness [err barrier to entry] of the card system these games are great.
    An RTS mech deck type game has my mind racing.

  8. Thomas says:

    I’ll have you know that not only is Pure a 360/PC racing game too, it also owns. A lot. Like a whole lot. It is SSX on ATVs. The PC port is supposed to be pretty good too.

  9. ascagnel says:

    As much as I tried to love Spring, the interface completely put me off. The lack of tooltips, newbie-friendly information, and the immense complexity of the game, ultimately killed it for me.

    Tooltips are more of an important part of an RTS than most people think. Taking a game like Supreme Commander, Total Annihilation, or Spring and expecting a new user to sit there flipping through the manual is a recipe for poor sales. Simple tooltips can provide very useful information for new users, and for experienced players who have forgotten this temporarily.

    I recently struggled my way into X-COM (due to its recent sale on Steam), having forgotten the fundamentals over the 15 years since its release. The game was made infinitely harder by needing me to switch back and forth between the game and the digital copy of the manual that wasn’t even included in my download. (Thank you, third-party fan sites.) If X-COM was to be released today, its interface would be hammered for being so archaic and resistant to providing instruction to new users. We all mourn the loss of great manuals, but these few bits of information are far more important than a good manual.

  10. Optimaximal says:

    Looks interesting but I’m quite confused why people think N.A.M.E.S L.I.K.E T.H.I.S are cool?

    It’s good when the acronym means something – As convoluted as F.E.A.R. & S.T.A.L.K.E.R. were, at least the devs took a few seconds to tie each letter to a word.

    Does P.U.R.E. mean anything? It’s like Tom Clancy’s HAWX… I think someone said it meant High Altitude Warfare eXtreme! Come on…

  11. Nate says:

    Ahh, Carmina Burana. Where would the art of cliched drama be had you never been composed?

  12. PleasingFungus says:

    ascagnel: Actually, the manual was included. Sort of. There’s a link to the PDF from the game’s store page.

    Also. Optimaximal, the first five seconds of the video show the component words of P.U.R.E. Not especially excited about the game, but… it could be good, I’d have to try it. (And that I mustn’t do.)

  13. Weylund says:

    @Stromko: If it’s based on Spring you may be able to significantly alter the AI.

    Also, anybody who just selects all of their units and doesn’t optimize for different movement types and speeds is just not playing very well; I wouldn’t hold that against the game.

  14. kentrye says:

    I was also going to say something about that, don’t you stop thinking A.B.B.R.E.V.I.A.T.I.O.N.S are cool after you finish grade school?

  15. Lord_Mordja says:

    @ascagnel: Actually in recent releases of Spring, most mods extensively use widgets which can be turned on and off pretty easily. One of these is a tooltip like function and ingame help.

  16. ascagnel says:

    @Lord_Mordja: If that’s true, I may have to give Spring (and P.U.K.E.) (that’s what they get for M.A.K.I.N.G. M.E. T.Y.P.E. L.I.K.E. T.H.I.S., Y.O.U. T.W.A.T.S.) another shot. I’m always up for having a good game get better.

  17. caesarbear says:

    Looks interesting but I’m quite confused why people think N.A.M.E.S L.I.K.E T.H.I.S are cool?

    I guess they’re the same people that think using “O Fortuna” in a trailer isn’t hackneyed and lame.

  18. Lim-Dul says:

    As epic as the trailer is with “O, Fortuna” as background music I can’t help but notice the constant “snaking” of moving units which is a sign of poor pathfinding AI – a problem I thought to have been solved a long time ago. No wait, actually peoples till get that one wrong. ^^

  19. Corbeaubm says:

    Meh, the graphics are impressive for a Spring game, but gameplay-wise it sure doesn’t appear to have anything on Expand and Exterminate for Spring.

  20. Mark says:

    If anyone else read “entirely free RTS” to mean just that, I think the devs might have other ideas:

    [...] it’s currently being offered for FREE.

    We’re wanting public feedback about our game, and so we’ve decided to release the current beta builds to anybody who’d like to try it out!

    Not to knock it, it looks interesting enough – the AI and Pathfinding comments rang true with me though. Just seemed worth noting it’s likely to go commercial after the beta.

    I had originally thought given Spring is Open Source, it would need to be released in some format for ‘free’ anyway, but there are a lot more games on the ‘Spring Engine’ (last time I saw the site it was just open source TA) than I realized; http://spring.clan-sy.com/wiki/Games

    So perhaps they’ve adapted their license.

  21. Sahagin says:

    Spring is my most favoritist game engine thingy in the world.

    Also, P.U.R.E. is an acronym. Stop whining.

  22. Lim-Dul says:

    Spring is my most favoritist game engine thingy in the world.

    Setting the stage for a biased comment. ^^

    Also, P.U.R.E. is an acronym. Stop whining.

    “Also” – should that indicate that the previous statement was to be taken as a fact, not your personal opinion? =)

    Yes, P.U.R.E. is an acronym and we’re still laughing at that. The full title, Purify. (notice the slightly recursive acronym) Unify. Reclaim. (Did they run out of words with the “-ify” suffix? ;-) Exterminate. doesn’t make it any less ridiculous just like the old “acronym titles” from which the designers rapidly backpedaled (KKnD, MDK – perhaps M.A.X. was the only semi-cool one).

  23. Sahagin says:

    Sorry. I didn’t know that using “also” meant that my previous statement must be taken as a fact.

  24. Lim-Dul says:

    Context, I say, context. ^^
    “Also” followed by a factual statement (yes, P.U.R.E. is indeed an acronym) creates a semantic link to your previous statement which retroactively assigns it a new meaning.
    Yes, I like to use hermetic expressions.

  25. Weylund says:

    How is expressing the ownership of an opinion ipso facto an opinion? “Spring is the bestest game engine thingy in the world” would be an opinion. It’s truth cannot be verified, at least not given the content of the statement.

    “Spring is my favoritest…” however, is not opinion. It is not impossible to verify that truth; it has been stated unequivocally by the owner of said truth.

  26. Lim-Dul says:

    Indeed – I stand corrected. I must have read the first comment as “Spring is the bestest game engine thingy in the world”. While my analysis becomes redundant, the tone of the post in question remains through-and-through fanboyish. =)

  27. Weylund says:

    Indubitably.

  28. Lim-Dul says:

    Huzzah! We quadrate! ^^

  29. Weylund says:

    Whatchoo talkin’ bout, Willis?

  30. Sahagin says:

    Hooray, I didn’t even need to continue the discussion. High fives.

  31. Weylund says:

    Sometimes that happens to me. I leave, and then I come back, and someone else is talking for me. Usually my lawyer, after I’ve run down another hateful middle-aged bicyclist. Stop signs and red lights are for you, too, morons!

  32. sdfsdf says:

    This are stupid modification for SPRING. WE HAVE ENOUGH content for this BUGGY GAME

  33. ordteapot says:

    @Mark

    The Spring engine is GPL, so they would have to release any additions they made to the source code, but that wouldn’t preclude them from selling a full-content game based on it.

    i.e., they don’t have to distribute a compiled copy of the code and their custom assets/arts/content/whatever for free

    Take this with these grains of salt: I haven’t read much about the game, and I sometimes create fanciful delusions.