The overmind

Today, I'll be going over the evolution of the overmind over the years.

The overmind, in its many incarnations over the years

 

For those on the alien team, there is no structure more important than the overmind. Without it, the granger is incapable of building structures, and all base defenses cease to function. Naturally, taking it out is the primary goal of a human assault on the alien base, and as a result of this, the overmind is best kept guarded in a safe place. While it can take the most damage out of everything on the alien team and is capable of regenerating itself over time, it lacks any long-distance means of defending itself, as it is limited to close-range swipes of its limbs. Thus, the human attacker would do best to keep his distance while assaulting it.

 

 

This was the very first overmind, from the earliest days of Tremulous. Roughly, I would date this to the early 2000s, some time before the 1.1 release. Back then, the modeler seemed to have an entirely different concept in mind, considering that unlike its immediate successor, it had some form of head. Had the Tremulous developers stuck with this concept, some of the other alien structures might have been similarly anthropomorphized. Presumably, the overmind would have had some sort of voice, and it would explain why the Tremulous overmind had one in the standalone release. I wouldn't suggest thinking too much about what is going on below the torso, unless you'd like nightmares.

 

 

Here is the Tremulous overmind, the one you might have experienced in both the 1.1 and GPP releases of the game. At the moment, it is also the placeholder that we are using. It would seem that after the pre-standalone days, the Tremulous developers decided to remove the monstrous upper body, instead replacing it with something quite different. The lower regions appear to be roughly the same as before. Overall, the texture on the model is quite simple, with the same dark blue throughout. You can date this to roughly 2006, the time of the first Tremulous standalone release.

 

 

Our very first overmind model looked like this one, around late 2011. At the time, we weren't entirely sure what we planned on doing with the overmind, and clear influences can be seen from the previous rendition. The lower limbs are still present, and there is a tentacled region down below. Presumably, the circular extrusion above the tentacles would have turned into some sort of eye. The model never received much detail, since we had other priorities at the time. Ultimately, it was scrapped. We still have the model file somewhere, along with many other pre-alpha models that we decided not to use.

 

 

Now we're at where we were last summer. Disregarding all previous concepts of the overmind, we made an entirely new one, and we've stuck to it ever since. Much like the rest of our alien structures, the overmind has its own face, to give the idea that all alien structures are their own separate organisms, unlike the rather undetailed buildings that Tremulous had. In this shot, you can see the lengthy tentacles, and the smaller ones at the base that were to function as the creep. We gave the overmind a mouth studded with sharp teeth, inspired by the rather terrifying mouth parts of lampreys. The eyes glow with hatred. Green pustules throb with malice.

 

 

This was a progress shot from a few months ago, after we decided to alter some parts of our overmind based on feedback. The texturing job has been altered for a more uniform look. Rather than having a set of eyes, we decided on just two. Of course, the eyes are not actually visible in this shot, since we didn't add them just yet, but the red dots should let you know where they went. At the time, we were thinking of some creep-like covering on the overmind, and the tentacle arms were roughly the same length as they were before. The mouth has been altered to be even more terrifying than before, and the green pustules are gone.

 

 

At last, we reach the final stage of the overmind. It's almost ready to be animated. This is, ultimately, where we've wanted to go all along. The glowing eyes are there, the mouth is the way we want it, the tentacles are shorter so that they can fit inside the bounding box and won't clip through walls as easily. Just as before, the brain portion is nice and veiny. We also have a new creep texture down below, and we've adapted it for usage on all our other models. Barring future adjustments, you will see this version of the overmind in a release in the near future. Around the same time, we'll show off the new egg, too.


See you all again next week! Also, make sure to indicate your interest in our planned development games in this thread. You can play games with the development team and other people in the community! They'll happen each Sunday at the times listed. Make sure to share your experiences in the thread.

Refresh Posts
Re: The overmind -- tuxator
Monday, 10 December 2012 11:43
I don't quite get why that thing has eyes...with that much of contact to the ground you'd think that it could sense the humans by vibrations on the ground caused by the stomping of human feed. Also it can't even move and the eyes are locked...either it'd need eyes all around or none at all. Aside from that, nice work!
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Re: The overmind -- virus
Monday, 10 December 2012 13:16
"tuxator" wrote:
1.I don't quite get why that thing has eyes...with that much of contact to the ground you'd think that it could sense the humans by vibrations on the ground caused by the stomping of human feed. 2.Also it can't even move and the eyes are locked...either it'd need eyes all around or none at all. 3. Aside from that, nice work!

1. +1
2. +1
3. I'm still not so sure about the brainy stuff. I think i said this earlier, but it looks like as if the overmind won't be able to withstand the "touch" of a painsaw for more than a split second.
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Re: The overmind -- seana11
Monday, 10 December 2012 21:54
"ViruS" wrote:
1. +1
2. +1

Yes
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Re: The overmind -- janev
Monday, 10 December 2012 22:22
1. Irrelevant. "You don't need eyes because you can hear people coming" Wut kind of logic is this?
2. Who is to say it can't move or be moved. This sounds like a made up problem to fit with not liking the eyes.

About the not being able to be chainsawed bit... well it is supposed to be the nerve-center of the alien team. It is not a barricade. I think the brainy bits look bad ass.
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Re: The overmind -- kynes
Monday, 10 December 2012 23:58
"tuxator" wrote:
I don't quite get why that thing has eyes...with that much of contact to the ground you'd think that it could sense the humans by vibrations on the ground caused by the stomping of human feed. Also it can't even move and the eyes are locked...either it'd need eyes all around or none at all. Aside from that, nice work!

Many of the alien buildings have vestigial features like eyes and legs. This is a big part of the look that we wanted and fits in nicely with the lore that kharnov has written.
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Re: The overmind -- rustynaps
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 04:13
I don't like either one of these to be honest. Not because of logic but the way it looks. It just does not look threatening at all and the only models that I liked are the new Marine armor, all the marine weapons, Goon, Dretch, and Tyrant but the rest of the assets I despise. Like the acid tube, thanks to the new glowy shiney models I can't hide the damned thing anywhere anymore. Anyway back to the over mind.

The textures are well done, I like the dark and fleshy look given to it. It's just the way it is molded I do not like. It looks like an overgrown mutated Godzilla walnut with 2 puny worms sticking out of it. But hey that's just my opinion and this is your game so do whatever you guys want. Other than that everything your doing with this game is great. Keep up the work.

PS- Human taunt still sucks.
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Re: The overmind -- ishq
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 04:48
PPS: Check out the +rally command.
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Re: The overmind -- tuxator
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 08:40
"janev" wrote:
1. Irrelevant. "You don't need eyes because you can hear people coming" Wut kind of logic is this?
2. Who is to say it can't move or be moved. This sounds like a made up problem to fit with not liking the eyes.

About the not being able to be chainsawed bit... well it is supposed to be the nerve-center of the alien team. It is not a barricade. I think the brainy bits look bad ass.

well, it's called evolution. Did you ever saw a tree with eyes? Or, if you want something that can cause harm to animals, have you ever seen a carnivorous plant with eyes? Yeah, me neither. Even if that thing at one point would've eyes, those eyes would give it no benefit in terms of evolution so, well maybe there are some (much like there are some people with more than 10 fingers) but the majority of overminds wouldn't have those and since we go for the average in a game, that thing should've no eyes.

2. Well it can't move in this game, it doesn't matter if it can be moved (a tree can be moved, too. Doesn't need eyes for that). And no that doesn't have anything to do with not liking the eyes. They just don't make sense, regardless of how you put it. Unvanquished wants to be a pseudo-realistic shooter, much like NS2 so it has to follow certain paths and one of those is to make those aliens more realistic. By putting eyes on something that doesn't need them it doesn't follow any of those paths.

And yes it _is_ the nerve center. Which is exactly why it doesn't need eyes. Hell, by the definition of it, it doesn't even need any senses since those need to be interpreted by the brain/nerve center. But since it has some limited selfe defense it also needs something to sense enemies. And the easiest way to sense someone is using vibrations on the ground (which many animals can sense, even humans, to a certain degree, do that. If someone stomps on the ground near you, you can sense that. There are animals which not only sense that but can also determine the exact position relative to their own of the center of the vibration). If the alien planet has flying creatures the overmind might as well have ultra-sonic detection (much like bats). I mean, that thing has a big surface.

But eyes? No, those are the least effective things to keep track of something and they need much interpretation and can be easily misled.

Also, as Virus (kind of) already said, someone should give that thing a helmet.
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Re: The overmind -- kenur
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 10:05
"tuxator" wrote:
Did you ever saw a tree with eyes? Or, if you want something that can cause harm to animals, have you ever seen a carnivorous plant with eyes?

Yes to both.
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Re: The overmind -- qrntz
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 14:52
"tuxator" wrote:
well, it's called evolution.[dubious]
"tuxator" wrote:
Even if that thing at one point would've eyes, those eyes would give it no benefit in terms of evolution[dubious]
"tuxator" wrote:
since we go for the average in a game, that thing should've no eyes.[dubious]
"tuxator" wrote:
Unvanquished wants to be a pseudo-realistic shooter, much like NS2[citation needed]
"tuxator" wrote:
it has to follow certain paths and one of those is to make those aliens more realistic. By putting eyes on something that doesn't need them it doesn't follow any of those paths.[dubious][citation needed]
"tuxator" wrote:
by the definition of it[source?]
"tuxator" wrote:
But eyes? No, those are the least effective things to keep track of something and they need much interpretation and can be easily misled.[dubious][citation needed]
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Re: The overmind -- aliens_humans
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 17:32
"tuxator" wrote:
well, it's called evolution.
well, evolution is a fairytale for grown ups.
"tuxator" wrote:
Did you ever saw a tree with eyes?
did you ever saw an alien? it was with or without eyes???
"tuxator" wrote:
Even if that thing at one point would've eyes, those eyes would give it no benefit in terms of evolution
in terms of whose evolution?
"tuxator" wrote:
They just don't make sense, regardless of how you put it. Unvanquished wants to be a pseudo-realistic shooter, much like NS2 so it has to follow certain paths and one of those is to make those aliens more realistic.
again, did you saw an alien and know more about it... ?
"tuxator" wrote:
By putting eyes on something that doesn't need them
who told you that?
"tuxator" wrote:
And yes it _is_ the nerve center. Which is exactly why it doesn't need eyes.
show me someone with a brain that doesn't need eyes :)
"tuxator" wrote:
But eyes? No, those are the least effective things to keep track of something and they need much interpretation and can be easily misled.
if something can be misled those are not the eyes but the brain which interprets everything.
"tuxator" wrote:
Also, as Virus (kind of) already said, someone should give that thing a helmet.
who said that alien skin is like ours?


I think the overmind looks very good, especially with the eyes which gives it a unique aspect.
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Re: The overmind -- dwarfvader
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 09:57
Hi there,

IMHO:

i like the red/brownish texture pattern.
i don't like the odd "plate" like thing the OM is sitting on.
I don't like the short tentacles.
I don't think eyes fit well to a thing like an OM

>I hope I am wrong assuming that you are trying to sell us the
Quote:
the tentacles are shorter so that they can fit inside the bounding box and won't clip through walls as easily
lack of engine capabilities as a feature...rather than trying to overcome it. Alien structures are living stuff ...and should therefore be connected and/or touch each other ( Do you know the game Starcraft? ...that's a perfect example. The alien structures ( aka Zerg ) are all sitting on a slow growing carpet of alien slime, witch reflect it pretty good that they are organic).

Please just don't miss the opportunity to distinguish the both teams in every way you can. Thanks
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Re: The overmind -- stalkermit
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 11:59
"DwarfVader" wrote:
i don't like the odd "plate" like thing the OM is sitting on.

Oh no! Not liking something that has nothing to do with the game!
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Re: The overmind -- viech
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 15:20
People, be nice to each other!

Just imagine the following: If our current OM model has been around for six years in Tremulous and we wanted to replace it with some undefined blue blob with a vagina a lot of people would be mad at us. If it was the other way round a lot of people would be mad at us. If Tremulous didn't exist, a lot of people would be mad at us for having a structure called Overmind at all. Either way, artists that do excellent work get a lot of bad criticism that they don't deserve at all.

Also keep in mind that if we didn't give our developers some form of artistic freedom we would need to pay them and sell the product. Even then we could still not satisfy everyone.
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Re: The overmind -- tuxator
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 17:25
"ALiens_HUmans" wrote:
well, evolution is a fairytale for grown ups.


and you just disqualified yourself from every kind of discussion that will ever happen to you or has already happened.

To the guy that claims to have seen a tree with eyes: Source or it never happened.

To the person that put every line of my post into quotation marks: dafuq? If you've questions, ask them. As for Unvanquished being a pseudo-realistic shooter: It's not an arena shooter. It has strategic elements, it has 'reality near movement', at least for humans and the weapons of the humans are kinda realistic (well...aside from that chainsaw thing) so...to me that is pseudo-realistic. A 'realistic' shooter would be something like Red Orchestra or that US Army game (I always forget the name). Weapons jamming, limbs that are hit giving you disadvantages, leaning... If I'm wrong with the assumption that Unvanquished is a pseudo-realistic shooter, please explain what it is then.

As for the guy that wanted to know if I ever saw an alien: No and it doesn't matter. Evolution is the same everywhere (at least there is no proof of it being otherwise and it is the only concept we can observe). Short wrap up about what Evolution basically describes: The individuals that are adapted best to their environment will have more children than any other individual. The 'adaption' is no intelligent process. There are random DNA mutations that cause differences. For example, in humans, we've humans that have dark skin, white skin or kind-of yellow skin. Or different eye colors. Or, let's assume that all the techniq didn't happen and we would still hunt, people like me that need glasses to see anything that is more than 5 meters away from them would not be able to spread their genes because they'd die of starvation (yay for technology).

So, since those alien brains must reproduce somehow, the ones that are, thanks to random genetic mutations, better adapted to their environment in comparsion with all other brains will reproduce more than them. And by all means, those eyes are hardly beneficial to something that can't really use them.

*edit if those Aliens don't have DNA, they've some equivalent. Something that describes how they...look like or what body parts they have. And that information will most likely be altered when reproducing.

I don't think that those Aliens are manipulating that 'information'. Reason: If they could do that, they'd have constructed something like an 'uber warrior', which they don't have. Or they did a really shitty job at that.
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Re: The overmind -- kenur
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 18:25
http://i.imgur.com/He7VS.png
Here you go.
And stop being so pretentious, you started posting only recently and suddenly you became an expert on all things Unvanquished?
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Re: The overmind -- e-mxp
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 19:09
I really do like the new Overmind model, I do think however that it should have more eyes. Giving it two eyes would make it inconsistent with the other models. Maybe make the eyes more rudimentary (not animated/smaller then the forward eyes)?

Also, please take the evolution debate to some other forum, it has no place here.
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Re: The overmind -- journeyman
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 19:10
"KenuR" wrote:
http://i.imgur.com/He7VS.png
Here you go.
And stop being so pretentious, you started posting only recently and suddenly you became an expert on all things Unvanquished?

I think I still have that game. :D
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Re: The overmind -- seana11
Wednesday, 12 December 2012 22:07
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Re: The overmind -- kharnov
Thursday, 13 December 2012 00:36
That's enough. Let's stay on-topic here, folks.
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Re: The overmind -- virus
Thursday, 13 December 2012 11:09
Certainly this guy doesn't need eyes: edit: Link removed due to malware.

To me, eyes are just a "weakpoint." I don't think the overmind will have a function like "Oh shit i see a human with a painsaw! He's gonna saw my eyes out!" ability so i guess it shouldn't need them.
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Re: The overmind -- tuxator
Thursday, 13 December 2012 20:29
"KenuR" wrote:
http://i.imgur.com/He7VS.png
Here you go.
And stop being so pretentious, you started posting only recently and suddenly you became an expert on all things Unvanquished?

what does that image have to do with this topic?

Also this does not have anything to do with being an expert on Unvanquished. Also being an Expert has nothing to do with posting something in some forum.

And apparently, I know more about this than you do because else, you'd come up with arguments to disprove me...which you don't.

also I don't see how this is not on-topic. After all this is about the model of the brain.
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Re: The overmind -- seana11
Friday, 14 December 2012 02:11
Please: stfu and gtfo

(This discussion is going nowhere, and you are just making an idiot of yourself by trying to continue)
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Re: The overmind -- kenur
Friday, 14 December 2012 09:52
"tuxator" wrote:
what does that image have to do with this topic?

Also this does not have anything to do with being an expert on Unvanquished. Also being an Expert has nothing to do with posting something in some forum.

And apparently, I know more about this than you do because else, you'd come up with arguments to disprove me...which you don't.

also I don't see how this is not on-topic. After all this is about the model of the brain.

You told me that there were no trees with eyes and I provided proof that you were wrong!
If you plan on acting like dick then take your stupid beliefs elsewhere.
I would've come up with arguments if I cared, but I don't because it's a waste of time and I'm lazy.
This is off topic because you can't accept that your ideas are stupid and you keep trying to defend them.
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Re: The overmind -- danmal
Friday, 14 December 2012 13:16
People have different opinions about what looks good and what doesn't. Flaming people because of those opinions is pretty pointless.
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Re: The overmind -- kenur
Friday, 14 December 2012 15:34
No need to be a dick about it though.
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Re: The overmind -- Unregistered (guest)
Tuesday, 01 January 2013 06:28
1 for mouth
-1 for eyes.
good day gentlemen
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