posted on August 8, 2022
Thank you all for taking part in the latest Squad Q&A where you, the players, get to ask the people who made Squad all about the game! This continues to be an experiment, so we may tweak things as we go forwards, but we’re delighted with the continued high quality of questions that we received.
It was hard to narrow it down to the ten (10) questions that we were going to answer, and we tried to spread them out as much as possible.
If your question was not answered feel free to ask it again next time.
Thank you all for your participation, and without further preamble here are your questions and our answers!
Since last summer we’ve been much more communicative with the playerbase, through these Q&As, and various blog posts. We’re working to formalize the schedule for ongoing communications like the Wrench, and the Server Spotlight. We always continue to look for new ways of keeping players updated on Squad’s development.
We are continuing to expand on what we’re sharing prior to a release, both with the general community and also with Squad’s talented Partners and content creators. We were able to share information surrounding the v3.0 update further in advance than we have with some updates of the past, and had a strong campaign from a teaser that got players talking. We’ve also made an effort with the last few updates to ensure that our Partners had access to a stable build of the Update prior to launch to begin creating content early and we’re continuing to work towards supporting that. Our Squad Developer Diary – July 2022 is an example of some of what we’re referring to.
As we continue to improve upon our development process, we are hoping to provide more information even further in advance. Game development is, as many of you know, a complex process – and our team now, more than ever, is committed to ensuring that when we tell you something is happening, as much as we can ensure it will, it will happen. This guiding principle means that we don’t always have the ability to give as much notice as we’d like to, or as we know the community would love to see. We made strides with this for 3.0 and we will continue to work on this where we can.
Work on upgrading to Unreal Engine 4.27 is currently underway. Upgrading Squad to newer versions of the Unreal Engine takes some time and is a very difficult process to go through. We currently do not have a timeline for when that would be introduced into the live version of Squad. After the upgrade to 4.27 we will look at what further updates will best serve Squad and its players.
We received a lot of questions about what was next for Squad or about particular “wish list” items that players want to see added to the game. We would love to be able to comment on these, but right now are not in a place where we are able to. We always appreciate the suggestions and requests the community puts forth, even if it’s for content we know we won’t be able to implement. Your passion for the game remains something that we absolutely love! We have course corrected from the past mistake of announcing everything we are discussing prior to even working on it, as that led to situations where we were accidentally promising content we didn’t already have on the way.
More directly to the question of “what comes after the Pan-Asian faction” it’s not something that we’re ready to talk about in detail just yet. We have a lot in the works right now, and several more updates planned for 2022, 2023, and beyond! All we will say at this point is that the future of Squad looks bright and we’re excited to share more with you when it’s the right time!.
Additional skins are possible, but not something we’re necessarily focused on at this immediate point in time. As always, anything we add to the game will be based on creating a believable experience that closely mirrors the real world. All future possible skins would likely remain within this aesthetic as opposed to being, say, something cartoonish or immersion breaking.
At this point though our focus is on other priorities and planning.
Update v3.2 will contain some changes which we expect will help performance, but they are the quick changes, not the long-term big ticket items that will have more of a positive impact on performance. We know these bigger changes will have a more significant effect on performance, but we’re less certain about the sum impact of the smaller items included in v3.2. Therefore, we don’t want to unequivocally say “this map will run way better” or anything like that. We’re optimistic, but we don’t want to inflate your expectations.
The degree of improvement is not expected to be drastic at this stage, and will vary by user.
The bigger performance gains will come from updates after v3.2. We don’t want to rush the more significant kinds of changes. Our focus is on doing it right, ensuring the larger scale changes actually do make a performance difference, and do not degrade visual quality, or create new technical debt.
Our long term ambitions include a map-by-map asset audit, simplifying overly-complex assets and LODs, removing unnecessary shadows, and more. Performance will continue to be a consideration for future updates. We will continue to share our efforts to improve performance in the future.
We have not ruled out adding a progression system to Squad, but we are currently not focused on that at this time.
We are going to be doing a lot of work to improve the SL experience. We don’t just want to make the Squad Leader role better for those that intentionally take it on, we are also improving it for those who inevitably have to to step up to the plate and take over leading their squad.
These map layers are meant to be a fun novelty. We develop Squad with an aim towards authenticity; however we may add more layers like this in the future, but such novelty layers are not our primary focus.
While we’re on the topic, here’s a list of such layers currently in v3.1:
It’s moving in the right direction, but emplacements have not had a huge impact on the meta. This was expected, since we haven’t addressed spawn mechanics or pacing, both of which have a much bigger impact on how the game is played and on the viability of fortifications.
We have plans for more tweaks, including tweaks to balance, but the answer lies in future changes to game mechanics.
The Militia faction needs to feel unique. They should feel like an underdog faction which you get excited to play as. Going forward, expect them to lean into fortifications and ambush gameplay.
The intent is for matches featuring MIL to have an unique meta. Facing MIL should cause conventional opponents to have to think and play differently in order to succeed.
And while they wouldn’t be viable in their current form, once the asymmetry is better addressed, we’ll be pitting them back against conventional factions on a number of AAS and RAAS layers. That should help make playing as OPFOR feel less repetitive.
We’ll be getting to work on that in the future, but beyond that we’re not ready to share many details at this time.