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About Judy

As WP's senior editor, I edit review and preview articles, attempt to keep up with the frantic pace of Rainier's news posts, and keep our reviewers on deadline, which is akin to herding cats. When I have a moment to myself and don't have my nose in a book, I like to play action/RPG, adventure and platforming games.

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'America's Army: Special Forces' - v2.2.1 Update Patch Available NOW

by Judy on Nov. 18, 2004 @ 12:02 p.m. PST

The US Army has released a new updated version for America's Army: Special Forces (Vanguard). This upgrade brings their team-based multiplayer game to v 2.2.1 and fixes/tweaks some of the maps, new PB code, as well as minor other fixes. Read more for details and download links ...

Get the America's Army v2.2.0 -> v2.2.1 [Win] Off Worthplaying (29mb)

America's Army: Special Forces (Vanguard) v2.2.1

What's changed

- Updated SF Hospital: Removed M9 from standard loadouts
- Updated SF CSAR: Assault spawnpoints returned to original position
- Updated SF Oasis map: Gameplay balance tweaks
- Fixed training issues in the following training missions: MOUT, M24, and U.S. Weapons
- 'pbweb.exe' added to 'pb' folder for manually updating PB client and server versions
- America's Army registered trademark symbol added to various in-game AA logo graphics
- Default demo added for demo/kiosk mode feature
- Adjustment to disable DevMode commands
- New PB code (scans additional files)
- Change to prevent admins from retrieving players passwords via PB screenshots
- Fixed '-1' server kick exploit

Previous Version (v2.2.0):

New Multiplayer Missions
------------------------------------------------------------

Included in this version of America's Army are two new
multiplayer missions. Both of these new missions are
Special Forces missions containing both the Special Forces
playable Soldier class, as well as the Indigenous Forces
playable class.

- SF Oasis:

Enemy forces have established a remote desert outpost
from which to launch reconnaissance patrols and
conduct ambushes. A Special Forces operational
detachment alpha (ODA), along with the help of
Indigenous Forces, must perform Reconnaissance of the
area in order to identify the location of this
guerilla base. Once identified, they must then egress
to a rally point in order to upload their
reconnaissance reports to HQ.

- SF Taiga:

Enemy forces purchased a small number of SAGGER
anti-armor missiles for use by insurgent forces.
They are hiding these missiles within civilian camps
skirting a mountain road. These missiles will enable
the insurgency to ambush both civilian and government
convoys at extended ranges. A Special Forces ODA along
with Indigenous Forces have been deployed to locate and
destroy SAGGER missile caches in order to disrupt
enemy combat operations within the area of operations.

==========================================================================
What's fixed
==========================================================================

Client:

- Fixed various client crashes
- "JRTC Farm Raid" filters correctly in server browser
- Running in 16-bit windowed mode no longer has render errors
- Fixed reflex sight accuracy
- Fixing "ROE" URL on support page and new-map URL
- Disable "set" command for non-config variables (devmode
exploit)
- Fix Auth Failure messages that have a URL

Server:

- Minor memory fixes
- Fixed various server/client crashes
- Remove "query" exploit
- Fixed server stability issues
- Fixed Admin spectate command
- Memory Leak fixes
- Fixed pb admin commands


==========================================================================
What's changed
==========================================================================

- Admin kicks no longer give ROE
- Admins can join Min/Max Honor servers
- Admin text is displayed as red
- Allow normal user to be admins on Leased servers
- Disable player color codes
- Add option to restrict by groups
- GameSpy: Display third-party icon
- GameSpy: Display groups field in server info
- Allow Auth to set third-party flag
- Added "Invalid Group" failure message
- Save Group information to savefile
- Notify the player before joining a server that has Group
restrictions


==========================================================================
==========================================================================
Previous Version (v2.1.0):
==========================================================================
==========================================================================

America's Army: Special Forces (Downrange)
Release Notes (Version 2.1)


==========================================================================
What's new
==========================================================================


Character 'Ragdoll' Physics
------------------------------------------------------------

New in this edition of America's Army is the implementation
of the Karma Physics Engine. This new feature applies
real life physics to all player characters in the game. This
produces real-time unique animations for each character
during gameplay. These unique animations are calculated
using real life physics as well as many other factors
including, the gun/bullet type used, the distance from a frag
grenade, the damage location on the body, etc.

New U.S. Weapon - M136 AT4
------------------------------------------------------------

The M136 AT4 is the Army's primary light anti-tank weapon.
The M136 AT4 is a recoilless rifle used primarily by
Infantry Forces for engagement and defeat of light armor.
The recoilless rifle design permits accurate delivery of
an 84mm High Explosive Anti-Armor warhead, with negligible
recoil. The M136 AT4 is a lightweight, self-contained,
anti-armor weapon consisting of a free-flight, fin-
stabilized, rocket-type cartridge packed in an expendable,
one-piece, fiberglass-wrapped tube. The M136 AT4 is man-
portable and is fired from the right shoulder only. The
round of ammunition is self-contained in a disposable
launch tube. The system weighs 15 pounds and can be
utilized effectively with minimal training. The Opfor
equivalent is the RPG-7.


New 'Tournament Mode'
------------------------------------------------------------

This version of America's Army features new tournament
mode features, which are accessible either via the command
line or a GUI interface. It will include an adjustable
pre-match warm-up period with an in-game notification that
the match is beginning. The time remaining until the
tournament start is also displayed on the score screen,
as well as in-game reminders, and a final 10-second
countdown.

Tournament Mode

The new tournament mode has the following features:
- The ability to launch tournament mode via the command line
- Tournament Squad Leaders with special permissions
- A pre-match warm-up time which does not count toward the
tournament score.
- Score screen is displayed at the end of the match, and the
match does not automatically restart.
- Time until the tournament starts is displayed on the score
screen.
- Messages remind the players how much time is remaining
before the tournament begins.
- Ten second countdown reminder before tournament starts.
- Tournament and warm-up start messages.
- The ability to control tournament functionality via ini
file settings

New Admin functionality:
- The ability to set/remove Tournament Squad Leaders

New Tournament Squad Leader or Admin abilities:
- Restart the tournament when the tournament is over or
during play
- Force the start of the tournament
- Force the start of the warm-up period
- Force the start of the tournament with a 10 second count
down
- Mute a players on same team or whole team
- Place players on team
- Place players on specific fire teams in specific classes
- Set the Tournament start time

Generic Steps for Starting a Game in Tournament Mode:

1. Set the ArmyOps.ini file settings for the tournament.

In the [AGP_Gameplay.AGP_GameTeamObjective] section set the
following values:
- TournamentWarmupTime=1
- TournamentStartTime=2

TournamentWarmupTime will be the number of minutes to wait
until starting the warmup period. TournamentStartTime will be
the number of minutes to wait until starting the actual
tournament. Make any changes to the standard roundspermatch
and matchesbeforecycle variables as desired.

* NOTE: There also exist a preset tournament configuration
file called servertournament.ini located in the
'System' folder.

2. Launch the server in tournament mode.

This is done by launching the server with the Tournament or
LanTournament command line flags. An example command line
would be:

server LANTOURNAMENT pipeline.aao log=server.log

* NOTE: There also exist a tournament server batch file
called RunServerTournament.bat that contains
a sample command line for running a typical
tournament server. This file is located in
the 'System' folder.

A server launched with the TOURNAMENT flags will be set up for
internet play. A server launched with the LANTOURNAMENT flag
will be set up for lan play.

3. The two leaders of both teams must connect to the server.

4. Log into the server as an Admin.

5. Admin designates the Tournament Squad Leaders for each
team.

One player from each team must be designated as a Tournament
Squad Leader. Select the Tournament tab from the in-game menu.
This displays a list of all of the players currently on the
server. To add the player as a tournament squad leader first
highlight their name in the list. Then select the team to add
the player to and click the Add button. Then click the Set
button next to the team leader section to set the player as a
team leader.

6. Squad Leaders add team members to their team.

Once the admin has set the Tournament Squad leaders, they are
able to perform their tournament commands. First they must
select the members for their team.
To add a player to a team first highlight the name of the
player to add to the team. Then select the team to add the
player to and click the Add button. Repeat until all team
members are added to teams. (Note: admins cannot be added to
teams).

7. Squad Leaders assign team members their fire teams and
classes.

To add assign a player first highlight the name of the player
to be assigned. Then select the appropriate unit slot from the
drop down box (Squad Leader, Fireteam Alpha, Fireteam Bravo
etc.). Then select the appropriate class within the unit from
the drop down box (Rifleman, Grenadier, etc.). Finally, click
the Add button to place the player in the specified slot.

All players should be assigned to a Fireteam and class.

8. The Warm-up period begins automatically.

Players can play normally and warm up during this time. Warm
up has no bearing on the score of the tournament. This time
may also be used to verify that all players are on the correct
team in the correct classes.

9. The Tournament begins automatically.

A countdown will notify the players that the tournament is
starting. Once the “Tournament Starting” message appears and
the round restarts, the tournament has begun.

10. Tournament Ends, Tournament Score is displayed.

When all rounds have been completed and the tournament is
over, a screen will appear displaying the winner of the
tournament and the final score. This screen will continue to
be displayed until the tournament is restarted.


Advanced Tournament Options

Admins and Tournament Squad leaders with the proper
permissions can perform certain tasks which control the flow
of the tournament. The normal flow of a tournament is
automatic, however these actions may be performed if the
normal flow needs to be altered. The actions are performed by
clicking the corresponding button in the Tournament Tab of the
in-game menu.

RestartTournament - Restarts a tournament during play or after
the match is over. The tournament will start over and all
scores and values are reset.

StartTournament - Forces the start of the tournament.

Warmup - Forces the start of the warm-up period.

CountDown - Forces the start of the tournament with a 10
second count down.

Depending upon the values set the in the ArmyOps.ini file,
Tournament Squad Leaders may be able to perform additional
commands. Admins may always perform these commands. The
following are some of these commands:

tournament SetStartTime newstarttime

This command will set the time in minutes until tournament
start to the specified newstarttime value.


Advanced configuration file (.ini file) settings:

These settings are listed in the following format:
[Type] [Variable Name] [Default]
[Description]

int TournamentWarmupTime 1
Number of minutes to wait until starting the tournament warmup

int TournamentStartTime 2
Number of minutes to wait until starting the tournament

bool bTournamentSLCanAddToTeam True
Tournament squad leader can add players to teams

bool bTournamentSLCanStartTournament False
Tournament squad leader can force tournament start

bool bTournamentSLCanStartWarmUp False
Tournament squad leader can force warmup start

bool bTournamentSLCanStartCountDown False
Tournament squad leader can force tournament start with 10
second countdown

bool bTournamentSLCanRestartTournament False
Tournament squad leader can restart the tournament


Advanced Admin/SquadLeader Commands (built into GUI):

Command: RestartTournament
Argument Type: N/A
Description: Restarts the tournament either in progress
or after it has ended
Usage: "tournament RestartTournament"

Command: StartCountDown
Argument Type: N/A
Description: Forces the tournament to start with a 10 second
countdown
Usage: "tournament StartCountDown"

Command: SetStartTime
Argument Type: int
Description: Sets the time until the tournament starts
Usage: "tournament SetStartTime newstarttime"
(newstarttime = minutes until the tournament starts)

Command: StartWarmUp
Argument Type: N/A
Description: Forces the tournament warmup to start
Usage: "tournament StartWarmUp"

Command: StartTournament
Argument Type: N/A
Description: Forces the tournament to start
Usage: "tournament StartTournament"

Command: AddToClass
Argument Type: string or int, int, int
Description: Places a player on a fireteam in a specified
class
Usage: "tournament AddToClass PLAYERNAME UNIT_SLOT SLOT_INDEX"
(PLAYERNAME = The name or player ID of the player,
UNIT_SLOT = 0,1,2... 0 = Squad Leader,
1 = Fireteam Alpha, 2 = Fireteam Bravo, etc.
SLOT_INDEX = 0,1,2... 0 = First slot in the unit,
1 = Second slot in the unit, etc.)

Command: AddToTeam
Argument Type: string or int, int
Description: Places a player on a specified team
Usage: "tournament AddToTeam PLAYERNAME TEAM_ID"
(PLAYERNAME = The name or player ID of the player
TEAM_ID = 0 or 1 0 = Assault, 1 = Defense)

Command: Mute
Argument Type: string or int
Description: Toggles the muting of a player or all players,
Works just like admin mute, only Tournament
Squad leaders can't mute players on the other
team
Usage: "mute all" or "mute PLAYERNAME"
(PLAYERNAME = The name or player ID of the player)


New Stryker Armored Vehicle
------------------------------------------------------------

This version of America's Army introduces the Army's new
Interim Armored Vehicle, a.k.a. the Stryker. The Stryker
vehicle is currently implemented as a stationary vehicle
with a fully functioning .50 cal turret usable by the
player. The Stryker's turret is accessible from inside the
vehicle and has full zoom capability. These new Stryker
vehicles are available in the "SF Arctic" mission. The
Stryker turret zoom in/out keys are defaulted to the
MouseWheelUp and MouseWheelDown keys, however they can be
changed through the settings menu.


New Multiplayer Missions
------------------------------------------------------------

Included in this version of America's Army are two new
multiplayer missions. Both of these new missions are
Special Forces missions containing both the Special Forces
playable Soldier class, as well as the Indigenous Forces
playable class.

- SF Village:

Insurgent forces have acquired multiple weapons caches
and are holding up in an abandoned desert town. A
Special Forces A-Team, along with friendly Indigenous
Forces, must infiltrate their position in town and
seize these weapons caches in order to degrade enemy
capability to arm insurgent forces.

- SF Arctic:

Coalition forces transporting arms and ammunition
struck an improvised explosive device (IED),
immobilizing one of their vehicles on a high-
altitude mountain road. A Special Forces A-Team, along
with friendly Indigenous Forces must now protect their
essential materials and supplies from an assaulting
resistance force who wishes to capture those supplies.
The Stryker vehicles accompanying the supply convoy
have taken defensive positions to help defend the
immobilized convoy.


New Realistic Suns Including Lens Flare
-------------------------------------------------------------

Sun lens flares portray the real-life effects that you see
when looking toward the direction of the sun. Their
introduction has a really exciting impact on gameplay and
in a variety of ways.

When looking in the direction of the sun, this has a
slight-to-moderate impact on your character's vision. Sun
flares add a much greater immersiveness to the game,
brightening-up your gamma momentarily. Needless to say,
sun flares have a much greater impact on certain levels/
missions. They are not limited to SF-only maps and are
retro-fitted to previous/existing maps including
Radio Tower and SF CSAR.


Class Selection Page Enhancements
------------------------------------------------------------

New in this version are 2 new enhancements to the in-game
class selection page:

- 'SWAP' feature

Players can now request to swap weapons/classes with
your teammates simply by hitting the 'Swap' button
next to his name in the in-game class selection page.
Once your teammate acknowledges your request to swap
classes, your positions will automatically switch.

- Weapons Mod Set Quick-Select

Players can now select their weapon mods set directly
from the class selection in-game menu rather than
having to go back to the main user interface.


New RPG and AT4 3D Ironsights
with Adjustable Range Settings
------------------------------------------------------------

Both the RPG-7 and the M136 AT4 have new 3D ironsights in
this latest version of America's Army. These weapons also
both have the new functionality of 'adjustable range
settings' based on the distance to target. Players can
now adjust the ironsights based on the range to target,
and then simply aim directly at the target when firing.
The RPG/AT4 can be set to the following ranges: 100, 200,
300, 400, and 500 meters. The range adjustment keys are
defaulted to the MouseWheelUp and MouseWheelDown keys,
however they can be changed through the settings menu.


New 'Auto Slow Mode' Toggle for Zooming
------------------------------------------------------------

New in this version is new functionality for toggling
'auto slow mode' for zooming. You can now go to slow mode
and raise your sights by pressing the zoom key instead of
pressing two different keys (zoom and slow mode keys).
This new feature allows automatic switching your player to
‘slow walk mode’ while zoomed in and auto-switching back
to ‘fast-walk’ when they un-zoom. There is an option
added to the settings menu to toggle between this new
system and the old system.


New 'Combat Reload' Including 'Plus One' loading
------------------------------------------------------------

When a player has an applicable weapon and reloads with a
non-empty magazine, they now retain the round in the
chamber and the magazine that was removed is decremented
1 round. With proper timing this also allows for a faster
reload time as the player's animation will not have to
clear the chamber and tap the forward assist with a round
still in the chamber.


New Alpha-Spectate Enhancement
------------------------------------------------------------

New in this version is an enhancement to regular spectating
mode. When spectating a player in 3rd person, the player's
chararacter will now become transparent as your camera
position comes closer to the player character model. This
prevents graphical clipping and allows the spectator to
focus on the action surrounding this player's character.


New Demo/Kiosk Mode
------------------------------------------------------------

New in this version of America's Army is a Demo/Kiosk
mode. This 'Demo Mode' allows for the game to run demos
either at the press of a button or after a customizable
set time limit. This demo mode allows for the gameplay to
be demonstrated without having internet connectivity.
Player created demos can be used in this demo mode as
well.

* NOTE: If you enable 'Demo Mode', you restart the game
for this setting to take effect.


Extras Included
------------------------------------------------------------

Gamespy Arcade:

GameSpy Arcade is the fast, free way to find games and
opponents America's Army online. Join millions of other
players just like yourself!

SeeMePlayMe:

SeeMePlayMe is an online gaming and chat program that allows
you to connect or create custom game servers. SeeMePlayMe
supports online multiplayer gaming, voice, video, text chat,
and room creation.

Xfire:

Xfire is a free application that makes it easy to play
America’s Army with your friends. Xfire shows you when
and where your friends are playing online and lets you join
their game with one click.

* NOTE: If you have patched from an earlier game version,
you can find these 'Extras' setup files in the
game's root installation directory. (Default is
C:Program FilesAmerica's Army)


Other Additions
------------------------------------------------------------

- Bullet/Explosion decals on terrain
- Display as OpFor option for Spinny Weapon Weapon Mod
page
- Added locational damage for projectiles. Players no
longer take global damage from getting hit with
projectiles. They now take damage based on the speed of
the projectile and the area of the body hit. For
instance a player hit in the head with an RPG round will
now die, but a hit to the arm would not be fatal.
- Added delayed shell ejection. Weapons with delayed shell
ejection (M203, M24, Mos, BS1 etc.) will now ejects
spent shells. Bolt action weapons now correctly eject
shells when working the bolt.
- Added config variable "PlayerAdmin" under section
"[Engine.AccessControl]" to list players authorized to
be player admins.
- "admin ban" command.
- "admin banlist" command.
- "admin unban" command.
- Added America's Army Europe (NATO) Server icon
- Server Browser Filters: PunkBuster, America's Army
Europe (NATO)
- Controls Options Setting: "Auto Walk Zoom"
- Audio Setting: "Use Default Driver"
- Player Count is displayed next to each team (Assault and
Defense)
- Smooth zoom transitions for 3D sights and 2D ironsights
- code-based Weapon Cyclic rate control for smoother
weapon animations
- Added a folder for demos.
- Player Start: IF Advanced Marksman (VSS Vintorez Sniper)
- Server will now re-authenticate itself at the end of
every match.
- New Arctic IF player textures.
- Dropped weapons now lie on their side and match the
slope of the terrain they have landed on
- Added an External Link message if you try to connect to
a legal map that you don't have
- Added a dialog box that asks if you want to enable PB
the first time you run the game
- Added turret death message
- SF Sandstorm: added new animated palm trees and louder
ambient wind sounds
- IRC in-game chat enhanced with new text characters and
colored text.


==========================================================================
What's changed
==========================================================================

- Binoculars no longer breathe cycle
- Players can now use the 'password' text box in the
Server Browser for both the admin password and the
game server password
- Single Player defaults to SF instead of IF
- Improved team swapping. Will now fulfill players change
team requests better
- code-based Weapon Cyclic rate control for automatic
weapons
- Weapons are now dropped realistically when the player
dies
- Adjusted physics for rocket projectiles.
- RPG rounds now dud 10% of the time instead of 20%
- Rocket Projectiles trails now go out when their
propellant runs out.
- You can't get idle kicked for a round that lasts less
than 20 seconds
- Internet browser list no longer clears when you close
menu (it still clear when you go to the LAN browser or
switch levels though)
- Adjusted the Ak74 iron sight position to provide a
better sight picture and reduce model "jitter"
- The dialog box that tells you that you're trying to join
a PB enabled server now allows you to enable PB and
join the server
- Various scope/sniper tweaks.
- SF Sandstorm: removed the M203 from this map
- Adjusted many map weapon loadouts and spawnpoints (esp.
frag nade loadout)


==========================================================================
What's fixed
==========================================================================

- Shells can no longer climb walls if you're too close to
a wall
- Nightvision is disabled when broll is on (exploit)
- Fixed 'duplicating weapons' exploit
- Fixed many map exploits
- Missing Fonts (double quotes, special ASCII characters,
etc.) have been generated and integrated (IRC)
- Fixed a bug where the an RPG round would float in mid-
air if spawning on an IF.
- Fixed a bug where player animations were playing the
wrong speed in multiplayer.
- Fixed a bug where the M24 would stay zoomed after firing
while moving or changing stances.
- Map loading time should be decreased
- Audio Settings: Default Driver cannot be chosen if
Hardware or Hardware + EAX is chosen
- Fixed "Gun half up" bug
- Fixed shell casings not spawning sometimes
- Fixed rifle range crash bug
- Soldier "spinny" Weapon and Weapon Mod should not appear
in odd instances (loading screen, etc.)
- PunkBuster enable/disable unified between Internet and
LAN server browsers
- Server browser filtering tweaks
- Sniper qualification now test rifle range score as well
as sniper training
- Fixed duplicate grenade getting dropped just as grenade
is thrown
- Weapon or grenade geting stuck if sprinting right after
spawn, or right after switching to grenades
- Disabled Console Commands: PAUSESOUND/UNPAUSESOUND (possible
exploit)
- Gamma can't be set higher than 1.5 in the .ini file
- UI weapon mods should no longer sometimes disappear and
reappear in levels
- RemoveClassInventory properly removes items when non-SF
qualified but in an SF slot (Sandstorm grenades)
- Fixed weapon reloading bug
- Server Browser: password is always passed on Server Join
(for admin and/or game)
- Server Browser: Check for MILES-only servers
- SF CSAR: fixed 5 known map exploits
- Adjusted 1st person spec view interpolation (smoother
view now)


==========================================================================
Known Issues
==========================================================================

- Weapons occasionally overlapping in hands when
spectating other players
- RPG will occasionally be seen as backward when
spectating other players
- UI Spinning Weapons sometimes stops spinning after disconnect
- Karma bodies sometimes disappear when they land on certain
StaticMeshes
- Spectating camera may not rotate around some Karma bodies

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