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    ARMM Interview (Rainbow 6 mods)

    Interviewed by Thomas "Deadeye" Petrizzo

    1. What was the reason to create ARMM in the first place?

    ARMM was created because during the early days of Rainbow Six there were several popular mods floating around. BF Arsenal (mine), MeanGreen's, and a couple others. People had a hard time finding a game online since everyone was playing different mods. The cry went out to the modders for a all-encompassing mod based on all the popular ones out there. So a bunch of us joined together to make NATO 1.

    The problem with doing a mod that way is a "too many cooks" problem. It was hard to decide on how the mod should work. So NATO 1 was kind of like a mod by commitee. That's why with NATO 2, and now NATO 3, the group is much smaller. Since we all have similar ideas on how things should behave, the mods are easier to put together.

    2. How many members of ARMM are there?

    Currently there are five of us. Q, Reiner Wolfcastle, MeanGreen, Shinobi and myself. There are other people that contributed to NATO 2 in the form of maps and such, a lot of people actually. They are all in the credits.

    3. Do you have any tips to other modders out there?

    Tips! Oh, a lot... hee hee. [ramblemode=on]

    Have fun. If it's not fun, what's the point?

    Baby steps. First open up the Rogue Spear (or Rainbow Six) folder and look at how the files are put together. It's mostly text files so you can use Notepad or Wordpad for most modding! My tools are mainly Wordpad and Excel for some tables. No 3D Studio Max here, I'll leave that to Mr. Wolfcastle. Make small changes and see what happens in the game. Don't try to do a whole mod the first time out. Another great way to learn is by looking at other mods!

    Realize that if you release a game 'publicity' you should support it. I was getting about 10-12 e-mails a DAY with tech support questions for NATO 2. That can quickly make modding not fun.

    Learn the limits of the system. Rainbow Six and Rogue Spear aren't like Quake or Unreal engine games. You can't go writing network modules or anything. But, you can do small mods very quickly in R6. Guys like mother.may.i are really pushing the envelope of what the engine can do.

    You don't need a team to learn modding. If you do get to the point where you want to do a big mod and need a team, here's what to look for: people who want to make the kind of mod you do; people who are going to commit to a mod, it takes a LOT of free time!; and people who already know modding and understand what you need.

    And never release anything to the public after midnight. Just a personal rule that I've learned from experience. That late at night you are likely to have made mistakes. Trust me! [ramblemode=off]

    4. Have members of ARMM ever worked on other mod sites?

    Well MeanGreen and Shinobi did mods when R6 first came out. I think Reiner released some models before we got him into ARMM, not sure. Q doesn't do mods per se, but is the Man when it comes to firearm information.

    PAST MODS:

    1. Do you consider the first NATO paid off in the end?

    NATO 1 was a lesson for me in shipping a product with a team that doesn't work in the same office. :) It was fun to see how popular it got and that energy drove us to create the second mod. All in all, I wasn't satisfied with how it ran though. There was this feeling like we could really do better.

    2. Nato 2?

    NATO 2 was nuts. I don't know what we were thinking. We pushed Rainbow Six and Eagle Watch right past the envelope in some ways. Doing all those weapons took forever, the installer is still causing me grief, and the size on the final product was really big (9MB!). It really took off though. I mean, I do mods for fun. I don't make a cent off it, not even a free T-shirt from Red Storm :). But when you log onto the Zone (stop laughing) and see a couple hundred people playing YOUR MOD, you can't help but be excited.

    NATO3:

    How many downloads do you suspect NATO 3 to have?

    I'm not sure how people will take NATO 3. Popularity on Rogue Spear has been slowing down, but I think it will pick up a lot when Urban Ops (the expansion) comes out. That's coincidentally going to be around when N3 ships so things might go nuts. When we released NATO 2 we took servers out of commission with the traffic. The sites that hosted it in the first couple days got hammered. We didn't have our own host back then though. I'm working to make sure it's smoother this time around. For one thing, it won't be 9MB!

    One thing about NATO 3 is that it won't be of the same scope that NATO 2 was. I mean, no new maps are a big difference. NATO 3 is about weapons, and a few other significant changes.

    NATO 3 should be out Soon(TM). We are wrapping up the beta right now. Mainly we're waiting for people to get off vacations or heavy work loads so we can polish up the last unfinished bits. As always, check the site for updates (www.rainbowsix.net/ARMM).

    What is the expected release date? "If possible, can GameSurge beta test the Nato 3 mod?"

    Since beta testing is almost done you might as well get the final copy when it ships!

    ARMM future:

    Are there any other games you plane to make modes for in the future?

    Well, I don't know about the rest of ARMM but I think NATO 3 will just about do it for Rogue Spear mods. At least as far as weapons go. After all, the first thing we have to do when we ship NATO 3 is supporting it! Ack!

    -Garret "BrownFoot" Polk
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