So let’s keep this going… Interface Improvements you said? right?

A big thanks for the previous poll participation. I am happy with the participation rate and all the further comments given on the various forum threads.

The winning answer in the Possible DLC Poll was quite a surprise… I would have thought majority would have preferred post-apocalyptic low tech mayhem above more trade & politics :) But I am taking note of this. And heck… one does not exclude the other, right?

The winning answers in the Improvements Poll do however require some clarification to make sure I understand this direction well. So “interface improvements” and “AI quality” got to the top of the request list with approx 20% and 15% of the vote. Especially “interface improvements” is a bit vaguely formulated so I am posting a follow-up poll here with as many aspects of the UI/UX I could think of, among which you can choose up to 2 answers that need the most work in your opinion.

So exactly which interface improvements would be most welcome (up to 2 answers allowed)?

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Best wishes,


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Happy Christmas everybody!

I wanted to give a big thanks to all players, testers and streamers. It is you that keeps me motivated. Not sure what your new year resolutions are, but mine is that I should find the time to make some more regular public updates, especially on Shadow Empire.

I have been working hard since summer and January 2023 should see the official release of 1.12. If you are already on the open beta that won’t change anything for you, but if you are still on 1.11 it will make a world of difference.

Max a few months later the Oceania DLC should follow up the 1.12 official release. I have been happy to see that most people understand why I am doing a paid DLC. Yes, it is to make continued development of Shadow Empire economically viable. Note that I am putting a lot of effort into improving the Core game as well.

I hope the DLC will do well as I have so many ideas on the shelf to follow up with. Please help me get a rough idea about what you’d like to see in the Shadow Empire future and answer the two questions below.

I would prefer a possible 2nd DLC to be focussed on

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What would be the most important improvement you want to see in the core game?

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Best wishes,


Posted in Shadow Empire | 2 Comments

Advanced Tactics Phoenix Version just made it to Open Beta!

Advanced Tactics is the breakthrough wargame-4X that has been going strong ever since its release in 2008 and upgrade to Advanced Tactics Gold in 2011. Combining random scenario generation with solid wargaming and 4X empire building.

Recent releases like that of Shadow Empire have kept Vic from doing any work on Advanced Tactics Gold. Hence Vic has signed up with Phoenix Team to bring some well deserved new life and support to Advanced Tactics.

At the moment Phoenix Team consists of Erich Ormand, well known for his Four Seasons Mod, and the prolific Claus E. Füssel, known for his popular Global Domination scenarios and many others.

We are starting this cooperation nice and easy. Phoenix Team is currently working on a volunteer basis and focussing on bug fixing, adding some features as well as improving the editor and its documentation. But if all goes well Phoenix Team might consider taking on the task of finally upgrading AT Gold to AT Platinum.

A huge new Open Beta v2.40 is available for manual install on the Matrix forums and as a BETA branch on Steam. It brings over 30 fixes and improvements as well as a major rework of the random game creation. You now have the ability to select regime properties, People, Name, Flags, and colors for random games and the climate system has been extended to cover the globe from Arctic to Antarctic with a selection of 21 different combinations of climate zones.

Support your classic games and do please do give it a whirl and post on the forums to let Phoenix Team know of any issues!

Posted in ATG: Advanced Tactics Gold | 3 Comments

Shadow Empire Design Snippet #32

There has been a lot of work on other game projects like Ardennes Offensive (and its sequel) and strangely enough Advanced Tactics too, but also on sketching out some grand new plans for a revolutionary new future title. Amidst all that the nanny got sick for weeks on end and I got to spend a lot of time with my little girl. Anyways I also managed to continue patching Shadow Empire and work on the upcoming Oceans feature.

The key mechanic for the Oceans feature are going to be the MTHs or Maritime Trade Houses. It is these MTHs that control the seas, not you! You can sign contracts with them for shipping and even obtain some shares to better influence them.

There can be different MTHs present on the same Planet, and yes… these can battle with each other for supremacy of the seas. Having an antagonistic MTH defeating your friendly buddy MTH and taking over crucial Sea Zones means you’ll have have to sign new transport contracts at probably exorbitant prices.

Still have a lot of mop up dev work to do, but the core work is done and I hope to get this to open beta as soon as possible. Fingers crossed!

Best wishes,


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Shadow Empire Design Snippet #31

Shadow Empire has been officially upgraded to v1.10.04 a week or two ago on all platforms. I am now focusing more and more attention to developing the next big feature. I think I can reveal the topic by now: Its “Oceans”.

A word of warning: I am not adding player controlled navies & units to the game (yet). It is already a big addition to have oceans, islands and watery Planets in the game. Surprise arrival on the scene will be the new Maritime Trade Houses (MTHs) you’ll be able to contact and sign shipping contracts with.

It will allow for some really different kind of gameplay. And I really like developing these systems, however honesty obliges me to say that development time and AI considerations are also a reason why I am not going (immediately) for player controlled naval units. I prefer to deliver the Oceans Update rather sooner than later and after that get me some much postponed AI development time on Shadow Empire. I’d especially like to improve the quality of the AI Major Regime moves and thus increase the challenge level.

best wishes,


Posted in Shadow Empire | 4 Comments

Shadow Empire Design Snippet #30

Just a quick word on Shadow Empire. The plan is to release the current open beta v1.10.0X in early January as the new release version. Best to not release it while my publisher is on holidays, hence the small delay. If impatient please opt in to the open beta. In the meantime I have started work for adding a major new feature to the game. I’ll need a few months to finish it as it involves a lot of work. I’ll tell you what the new feature is in the next design snippet, but I am sure you can guess :)

Best wishes,

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment