FNG Logo created by Nick Serr

20 May 2017

TrackMania 2 Canyon and Stadium Servers Back Online

I as able to get the TrackMania 2 Canyon and Stadium servers back online today, without XAseco2 (which means no records and map jukebox for now.)

Also, I had to recompute maps so there are limited sets of maps on each server for now.  We'll add more back as we go along.

My goal now is to revive the Valley server and get prepped for Lagoon next week.  After Lagoon is released and I have a standalone server for it, I will revive the TM2 Title Pack server as well (which will allow us to play all 4 TM2 environments on the same server.)

After all that is complete, I will assess which Server Controllers have caught up with the ManiaPlanet 4 (MP4) updates and see which might be the best to run on our servers.

Some of the slight tweaks in the Stadium and Canyon physics take a little bit of getting used to, but I'm finding most of the older maps that I tested on our servers are as easy, and potentially easier to drive than before.  None of them became unplayable after the MP4 changes.

Enjoy!  More to come...

19 May 2017

Team FNG TrackMania Servers Down for a Bit / ShootMania Server Still Live

Hey Friday Night Gamers and Friends!

The new ManiaPlanet 4 updates are pretty awesome, but extensive.  This means maps for our servers must be recomputed and I haven't had time to do so yet, with the exception of ShootMania.  I have 12 maps recomputed and working with our new TeamFNG_Royal script that works on the Royal title pack now.

We have officially moved the mode over to the Royal ladder/title pack and are still a 90k server.  The script needs a few kinks worked out (like getting our emblem back on the pole and spawn points) - and I still need to test to be sure the laser is one-hit eliminations.  We also need to figure out a way to get nukes auto-switched in the tunnels again (they disabled that in MP4).  I may forego fixing that depending on the feedback we get from the players on our server.

Our TrackMania servers will be down until I get a chance to start recomputing some maps -- since we keep a lot of nostalgia tracks, I'm certain I will be the one needing to recompute them.  I'll also pull more down from ManiaExchange AS we get the server spun back up.  It might be a couple of weeks to get the old ones going again.

I will also be spinning up a Lagoon server, and we will have the TM2 Title Pack server (which will host all 4 environments in one) after next week when Lagoon is released.

I'm excited to see if we can get some maps made for our Royal server that have TrackMania cars in them too.  If you make one, please let us know so we can share it on our server!

Stay tuned... more ManiaPlanet goodness to come...

09 May 2017

TrackMania 2 Lagoon Coming 23 May!!! ManiaPlanet 4 Available Today!!!

Nadeo and Ubisoft made my day today!

Ubisoft announced today that the Lagoon environment is finally coming to ManiaPlanet!  Mark your calendars... 23 May.  I don't know pricing yet... stay tuned.

https://v4.live.maniaplanet.com/



And get amped... the ManiaPlanet 4 update has a bundle of awesome new things available for map and mod makers, including wallriding for ShootMania (see "Power Paths"), TrackMania cars in (can be weaponized depending on the mod), turrets, shields and new weapons in ShootMania.  It is packed with all kinds of goodness.

Another exciting thing for Team FNG is that I've figured out how to get our TeamFNG_Royal mode to actually run under the Royal title pack where it belongs now.  I'm pretty excited to see how that goes.

One bummer is that they've disabled the default switching to nucleus weapon in ShootMania when you are in a tunnel.  That will make some of our classic maps not as fun, but we'll see if we can figure out how to get our TeamFNG_Royal mode to still honor that mechanic.  Might take some time, but we'll try to keep that "Pre-Beta2" classic mode we've always had on our server.

I'm looking forward to other fun things awaiting us in the new ManiaPlanet.

You will notice some slight changes in physics and handling in the existing TrackMania 2 cars, but I think you'll enjoy it.

01 September 2016

Team FNG's ShootMania Royal server goes 90k

Fans of the Friday Night Gamer's "Royal (old school)" server on ShootMania will be pleased to hear that we have obtained permission from Nadeo (according to the rules for Royal dedicated servers) to bump our server up from a 60k to a 90k.

More points points with your pew pew

The reason I waited so long is because we run a special script that makes our server play by the pre-Beta 2 ruleset (where the storm comes in closer to the pole and lasers are a one-hit elimination.)  We enjoy those rules better than the rules post-Beta 2.  Also, we have classic maps that we don't ever want to get rid of (like JumpStart, CliffJumpers, etc.) that were built around the old rules, and break somewhat if played on servers with the new.

Be mindful that this will only affect your score on the Storm ladder, not the Royal title pack ladder.  Because we run a custom script, we are required to run on the Storm title pack.  This is another reason I held off on trying to go more than 60k on our server.  The rules are a little different when not doing Royal and I didn't think our server qualified.  I'm grateful today to say that we do qualify and have bumped the points limit on our server to 90k.

Enjoy!

18 March 2016

TrackMania Turbo Goes Open Beta for Xbox One and PS4

See the announcement on GameSpot

(Thanks to Bomajoe for this news!)



Those that own Xbox One and/or PS4 are in for a treat.  Get an early glimpse of the wonderful world of TrackMania a few days before its release next week on 22 March.

Links to access it on your consoles are provided at the GameSpot article.

Enjoy!

02 January 2016

TrackMania 2 Canyon screenshot featured on Intel's XMP site



Talking tonight with Thundr about a new gaming desktop he'd put together, we got on the topic of Intel's Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) technology.  If you follow the link, you'll see one video game screenshot at the top of the article ... and one only (the rest of the photos are of gamers.)

Of all the video games chosen to be represented for this article about gaming RAM, guess which one was chosen?!   That's right, one of the best gaming franchises ever made... TrackMania!


This mega-awesome screenshot of TrackMania 2: Canyon was a fantastic choice for the Intel site; and one I use as a desktop wallpaper.

I really wish this game was more marketed in North America.  It is so awesome and many North Americans still don't know about it.  Yes, it's on Steam, but it's rarely highlighted except for once or twice a year when it's on sale on Steam.  Unfortunately it usually goes on sale when more well-known titles are also on sale.  We had one time when a surge of 10,000 new North American players came to TrackMania 2: Stadium when it was on sale for $1.99.  I hope we'll see more of that so we can get more North American TrackManiacs!

Anyway, back to the XMP story... I run TrackMania on a machine with XMP RAM and it runs as fast as I drive in TrackMania.  If you're using XMP RAM in an Intel motherboard, make sure to set the XMP profile in your motherboard's BIOS so you can take advantage of this great technology.

Then get into some TrackMania and come race with the Friday Night Gamers!

15 June 2015

TrackMania Turbo - Coming 27 Nov 2015!

Alright Friday Night Gamers... get ready!



Nadeo and Ubisoft revealed today at E3 TrackMania Turbo, a $19.99 title that looks to be comprised of all TrackMania 2 environments enhanced (Canyon, Stadium and Valley), and features a brand new environment called Lagoon Rollercoaster!

Lagoon Rollercoaster
The new environment for
TrackMania Turbo
If we are honored to be a part of an alpha or beta, we will DEFINITELY be playing this for our traditional Turkey Bowl LAN party in November... if not, we'll have to play it after when it is released on 27 Nov 2015!

I will be contacting Nadeo to get more information, especially to find out if the platforms will all be able to play together and to see if Turbo will be a title pack available through ManiaPlanet or only through the Uplay store.  (It better be standalone through ManiaPlanet!!!)



Stay tuned!!!  For now, enjoy the trailer!
TrackMania Turbo - Announcement Trailer - E3 2015


05 June 2015

Fond FragDolls Farwell


It's official.  Ubisoft has decided to retire the Frag Dolls team.  This video was put together by Daze and includes many, if not all of the Frag Dolls' alumni.  We're sorry to see them go, but know that they are doing awesome things: advancing their careers, education etc.

We are grateful for the time the Frag Dolls spent with the Friday Night Gamers, especially during the ShootMania Launch and TrackMania 10th LANniversary events!  ThatOneGuy is especially thankful for the opportunities he had to meet some of the Dolls in-person at PAX Prime 2012 Seattle, and during his recent trip to San Francisco.

We wish each Frag Doll continued success and happiness in the different endeavors you pursue.  Thanks for a fun ride!

(Oh, and we still expect you to play ShootMania and TrackMania with us in the future sometime.  You can't escape that easily!)   ^_^

Good Game Dolls!

03 April 2015

ManiaPlanet Sale - 75% Off This Weekend!

ManiaPlanet is having a sale on TrackMania 2 Canyon and ShootMania this weekend for 75% off!!!


TrackMania 2 Stadium - $2.50!!! (3-pack = $6.25; 5-pack = $10.00)
ShootMania - $5.00 (3-pack = $12.50; 5-pack = $20.00)

It's insane awesome.  You can get 5 licenses for the price of 1.
Take advantage of this killer sale if you need to fill some gaps in your ManiaPlanet titles, or if you'd like to gift some to friends that aren't already playing with us!

(Technically the sale wasn't supposed to start until 04 Apr, but it looks like some of the titles are going up early.  I will update this post if the other titles also go on sale.)

GG!

31 March 2015

Best Wishes to SiREN

Our Frag Doll friends are all moving on to the next steps in their careers.  We're so glad we had some fun times with them through the ShootMania launch, TrackMania 10th LANniversary and more.


SiREN hosted our epic TrackMania 10th LANniversary party in November 2013, which was hosted as a hype session precursor to the official 10th LANniversary party in December.  It was 2.5 hours of awesome, where we pulled off the first (that I know of) All TrackMania Environments worldwide LAN/WAN tournament across three servers.

It was an incredibly special night and we are grateful SiREN was a part of it.

On behalf of the Friday Night Gamers, I would like to wish you the best of luck, SiREN, in your new adventures with Twitch... and you'd better keep in touch!