Hyperbolic Space-Biff: AFF Planetstorm

That’s Angels Fall First: Planetstorm, to give it is full overwrought title. This was an enormously ambitious UT3 mod that came third in MakeSomethingUnreal, and is now being coverted over to UDK for possible indie release. Comrade Rob Hale noted that there’s a demo (with bot support) up over at the UDK showcase, and it’s quite the showcase: fighters attacking enormous capital ships on one level, and an infantry-led vehicular assault on the other. AFFP is a combat game that encompasses space combat and ground warfare, complete with a range of sci-fi military hardware, ship-boarding assaults, and vehicular spectacle. I’ve had a bit of a play with the demo and you can see that the game remains a work in progress – plenty of rough edges – but also that it’s one of those games that is just aiming for the stars. Perhaps, with a bit of support, they’ll get there. Worth a download if you want to investigate what they’re up to, anyway. (Most recent trailer below.)


  1. jonfitt says:

    Ooooh shiny. This is relevant to my interests!
    The land battle remind me of BF2142 but with more imagination. Are the bots any good? It will be a shame if the number of people playing ends up being too low for these big maps, and the bots are no good.

    • Arca says:

      Depends. I’ve not tested the higher levels, but the lower end bots are easily classifiable as “mentally retarded”.

  2. Pirate0r says:

    I like it! I remember first seeing AFF for homeworld 2 and even nexus. I’m glad to see that these guys are still around.

  3. Scroll says:

    I’ve been watching this game for years!

    Slowly but surely they are advancing, it seems the space combat is a bit more playable now.

    I hear they’re making an independent RTS now as well, I hope they finally get a small publishing deal for their series sooner or later, then maybe before the next decade we’ll see a polished release!

  4. Sarlix says:

    I think I just had a Aneurysm.

  5. Alexander Norris says:

    I never managed to get the mod version working despite being interested, so I gave up on playing it. Hopefully the UDK version will be simpler to get working by virtue of its stand-alone nature.

    Also, I hope we get some The Haunted news one of these days, since IIRC they were the ones to win MSU.

  6. Seras says:

    that looks incredible bad-ass

    looks like it’s a much more solid implementation of what Eternal Silence was trying to do.

  7. Dominic White says:

    Just played around with it a bit, and while the bot AI is a bit schizophrenic (I caught them unloading their guns into the floor a few times), the ‘feel’ is spot-on, and the weapons are intensely satisfying to use. Not bad for an early demo.

  8. cyrenic says:

    Wow, those space battles look great. Consider me intrigued.

  9. Ghiest says:

    As someone who is playing around in UDK (modelling and also a small bit o’ coding, I can honestly say that the work put in, is nothing short of amazing.

  10. dave says:

    INVERT MOUSE!!!!!!! WHY!?!?!?!?!?

    ahem, yes i cannot play using “fish” mouse and am yet to find the old invert mouse button =/

    • Rich says:

      You mean it’s set to forward = down, backward = up?
      Makes my head hurt just thinking about it.

    • Dominic White says:

      So, Rich, you haven’t noticed that ‘invert mouse’ toggle in EVERY GAME EVER MADE? If it’s a feature that is included in close to 100% of games, you’d imagine that somebody might want to use it, right?

    • Unaco says:

      Gah! Looks and feels quite promising and seems like it has alot going for it… Just ran around a map for 5 minutes, then got some orders, went to the area I was supposed to, organised an assault with a ‘cloaker’/’stealther'(?) and another guy who were there… dropped down surrounding the enemy, opened fire… got slaughtered because I couldn’t aim without inverted mouse. I noticed, if I wanted to look at options, I have to exit the server I’m on. Couldn’t find anything for inverting mouse. All faith in this lost, uninstalling as we speak.

    • Unaco says:

      Fiddled round in ini’s for a while. Think I’ve inverted it now.

    • jonfitt says:

      In games people who need “up” on the mouse to be “look-down” are bundled in with lefties as a weird fringe group.

    • Unaco says:

      Add ‘bInvertMouse=true’ to AFFPlanetstorm/UTGame/Config/UTInput.ini (line 9 worked for me), then Mouse vertical should be inverted.

      As for the general topic of inverting mouse vertical… It’s just what seems natural to me… whether that comes from playing Flight Sims as a child, or the fact that my first gaming rig (Amstrad CPC128K) used joystick as the primary input, or whatever… it’s the natural (or learned) way I play, and it’s practically impossible for me to try it normally. I spent a few days trying to train myself into normal mouse once… When I came back a few days after, I’d switched back to inverted controls.

    • Seras says:

      @jonfitt “In games people who need “up” on the mouse to be “look-down” are bundled in with lefties as a weird fringe group.”

      actually it’s the other way around: the mouse doesn’t go up or down, it’s goes forward and backward

      there’s a reason why flight yokes were designed this way, it’s the natural way. you lean forward to look down and lean back to look up, not the other way around.

      the “forward means up” association is the one that doesn’t make much sense in a first-person perspective.

    • Rich says:

      Forward to pitch down and backward to pitch up makes perfect sense to me when using a stick for flying games. A controller’s thumbstick or a mouse in an FPS just makes no sense to me. Particularly a mouse, which in every other job it’s given e.g. OS GUI, RTS scrolling etc. forward results in the cursor going up the screen or the camera scrolling forward, respectively.

      @Dominic White:
      OK calm down. I didn’t suggest that no one will want to use it, it just hurts my head to think that way. I’ve only ever met one person who plays FPS’ who uses an inverted Y-axis. So, in my experience, it’s minority thing anyway.

    • neems says:

      I think it depends on whether you view the controls as moving a cursor and clicking (standard) or actually controlling a viewpoint (inverted). Or not, just an idea.

      Personally I both invert and use the cursor keys for movement. I am truly old school. Or just weird.

    • Rich says:

      I’m with you on cursor keys.

  11. westyfield says:

    The only thing that makes me sad about that trailer is the “RAMPAGE!!!” message. If you’re not what a future soldier would have on his HUD, why are you on mine?

    Other than that, looks promising. I’ll keep an eye on this one (read: I’ll expect RPS to keep an eye on this one and tell me whenever something happens).

    • jonfitt says:

      There’s something perverse about your HUD exclaiming MONSTER KILL!!! when you blow up a carrier and condemn thousands to a grizzly death through burning or asphyxiation.

  12. MadMatty says:

    hmmm let me install UT3 again……….

    • Sudazima says:

      this is on the UDK engine, you don’t need UT3 anymore it is completely stand-alone now. we are going to make a retail version of planetstorm this year which will be available via steam and other media.

    • Sudazima says:

      we have a new trailer BTW, the one in the article is from RC8 ( last UT3 version ). the new trailer is on Epic’s page too, or here: link to moddb.com

  13. littlewilly91 says:

    yummy. The EVE console game developer could do with absorbing this lot when they are finished.

    They have experience in all the right areas

  14. Dain says:

    UDK is such a brilliant thing. The other games in the showcase are really nice too!

  15. DrGonzo says:

    Reeeeeally enjoyed this but struggled to find any humies to play with and the bots are as dumb as planks.

  16. Hurion says:

    I’ve been following AFF since it was a Nexus mod… Then a HW2 mod… Then a mod of something else… They need to pick a game and stick with it.

    • Sudazima says:

      AFF started out as a bunch of modders but we have grown. and now on we want to make more than just one AFF game…. well see what the future brings

  17. Dominic White says:

    The ballistics in this are surprisingly great. Every bullet has an actual travel speed, and depending on caliber and material hit, can penetrate stuff. Hiding behind a crate won’t protect you from a guy with a heavy machinegun, but empty that same gun at a hardened wall and you might hit yourself with a ricochet.

    Despite the semi-realistic ballistics, characters can take a serious pounding, especially heavy armor guys, which is a pleasant change from the norm. It makes cover (even partial) that much more important. Weapon power seems to decrease over range, too, so plinking at a guy off in the far distance with an SMG will just alert him to your presence as your bullets ping harmlessly off his armor. That same gun at point blank would be lethal, of course.

  18. Hypocee says:

    Hull Breach! You exist! I’ve missed you so much!

  19. ChaK_ says:

    those space battles looks good

    ground combat feel section8-ish, which isn’t bad

  20. Sarlix says:

    Well I recovered and downloaded and installed. First it had to install .net framework SP1, which is odd because I already have the latest .net with SP3.

    Anyway installed and found the ground level to be V bad performance wise. I don’t have the worlds best PC (4870, 6000+, 4GB ram etc) but I was getting like 15 FPS. :(

    I navigated to some terminal, which takes forever when you going at 15 fps. Like sailing through molasses on an ice cube. Anyway, I click on the terminal and I found myself in a space ship inside what appeared to be a giant ice cavern.

    My fps was a lot better in the space area, prolly around 50 fps. But that didn’t help much as my space ship handled about as gracefully as a dieing swan. So after spending 10 mins flying around shooting some space ship that seemed to take no damage I logged off. My experience was a lot different than from what that video lead me to believe it would be! Bah.

    • Sudazima says:

      normally i would say not high enough specs, but it sure should be better than 15 FPS….. do you have the latest drivers? otherwise mb try reinstalling…

  21. tome says:

    It looks incredible, it really does, but I can’t find any workaround for my horrible, horrible texture-streaming stutter (it doesn’t even go straight from low to high-res textures; it does like four passes on every surface). I have an 8800GTS 320MB, which is almost certainly the problem, but does anyone else get this? It’s never been this bad on other U3Engine games.

    • Sarlix says:

      Yeah I get exactly the same, I’m on a 4870. It doesn’t seem to happen on the space level though.

    • Sudazima says:

      we do have texture streaming otherwise it would kill your grafics card ;P

  22. FRIENDLYUNIT says:


    Yes, now I just have to wait for release. Ok, Rock Paper Shotgun your hand please. Yes, now keep it on the pulse of this game here. Excellent. kthxbai.