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Plokite_Wolf

Red Alert Development Dates

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AZ-Stalker was kind enough to send me the December 1996 issue of the old Croatian magazine "Hacker" with a review of the first Red Alert. What makes it so intriguing are the dates related to several development phases of the game, unavailable elsewhere nowadays. Everyone who loves keeping all possible data on C&C games can feast his eyes on this B)

  • 12 December 1995 - Westwood Studios started creating a real-time strategy game set in the Second World War. The name is still unknown.
  • 29 January 1996 - The newly named Command & Conquer: Red Alert begins experimental development on Windows 95.
  • 11 February 1996 - Story drafts completed, great new units and buildings announced.
  • 1 March 1996 - Development for DOS and Windows 95 accelerates. 80% of the engine and 25% of the artwork (graphics, sounds, missions) are done.
  • 15 March 1996 - Multiplayer capacity increased from 4 to 6.
  • 17 May 1996 - Multiplayer capacity increased from 6 to 8.
  • 27 June 1996 - Westwood Studios focuses development on creating a multiplayer environment on the Internet.
  • 1 September 1996 - Testing of DOS and Windows 95 versions started. Tester count increased from 10 to 60.
  • 5 September 1996 - Westwood Studios announces the game to be released in 45 days.
  • 4 November 1996 - PC Gamer releases "secret" information and never before seen images from the game.
  • 9 November 1996 - First CDs created. Bug hunting becomes a priority.
  • 12 November 1996 - The game malfunctions on some systems.
  • 14 November 1996 - First master discs manufactured. Final testing phase started.
  • 17 November 1996 (7:00 AM PDT) - Master discs sent for copying, ending the development cycle of the game.
  • 31 November 1996 - Game released in North America.

 

Magazine photos (not scans, he announces to have them made soon) are here: http://imgur.com/a/V0SSp

Edited by Plokite_Wolf
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I'll get to work on getting us quality scans as soon as I manage to fix my Canon scanner which is acting up at the moment. Shouldn't take too long. Might as well scan the old Hacker issue that contained the TS review and info about the trip to Prague (for reporters, magazines, news groups...) if I'm not mistaken. Though that second one was already covered by Plokite_Wolf, it could just use some page rescans for better image quality. :)

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AZ-Stalker was kind enough to send me the December 1996 issue of the old Croatian magazine "Hacker" with a review of the first Red Alert. What makes it so intriguing are the dates related to several development phases of the game, unavailable elsewhere nowadays. Everyone who loves keeping all possible data on C&C games can feast his eyes on this B)

This is certainly an impressive array of data, however may I ask where the magazine authors obtained such detailed info? Did they have access to some development diaries? Did they interview Westwood people?

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In the late 90s, they had several connections in development studios, and one such connection got them the ticket to the 1999 TS summit in Prague, for instance. They even previewed Discworld Noir eight months before the American PC Gamer!

 

They were quite trustworthy and reputable by then, so it is not difficult to believe that they were striving for such a status a few years earlier. Anything pre-2001 from that mag can be considered factual :)

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Well, we could ask the "Reboot" gaming magazine authors, since some of them were in the Hacker team a while back if I'm not mistaken... It's worth a shot PW, just have to double check on that.

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I believe the only person in the Reboot staff who has been involved in Hacker is Berislav Jozić. And I'm not sure if he's even there now.

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