pass_snowylake b2

Snowy PASS Time map with a train.

  1. Optimization, Prop Reduction and VENTS

    When I tested version B1, I saw that people hadn't been that happy with the framerate. Due to this, I decided that it will be enough with one playtest not to make anyone suffer. Even if that was only one playtest, I did receive enough feedback to improve the map.

    The first problem is the number of props. I personally struggle with detailing. It's not that I don't know how to detail, but how much I should do it. In other words, I over-detail lots of places.

    I have been told to reduce the number of props, but I have no idea which props I should remove since some props are apart of the gameplay.


    Later, I got confused with the tree feedback. I have been told that there are too many trees blocking the sightlines. The problem with this feedback is that most of the trees are located in the non-playable area (covered with player-clip). Or are placed next to the walls or cliffs.

    Sure, there are some trees next to the pit. But I don't understand why anyone would aim there with the sniper rifle. Who are they trying to shoot there? On the other hand, there is another tree located not far away from the pit, which is blocking the one-way entrance door. That is understandable why would someone complain about it. Although not so much when people say that the map is quite open for snipers. When two thoughts are countering each other, I honestly don't know who I should listen to or side with.


    But that's okay. I did remove some trees and other greenery in some areas to reduce the number of props. I even removed some trees that have been blocking the sightlines next to the defense balconies. It didn't make much sense for them to grow there anyway.

    Speaking of sniper sightlines. That's the second problem. Well, kind of. Not a biggy. Anyhow, the majority of players tend to feel safe when they are entering a cave from the mid. However, that hot zone has been quite open for snipers, so it got abused. To fix this, I placed a concrete doorframe in the cave. It will look like it is supporting the cave, so it doesn't collapse. Then I put a wall next to the train tracks. So now, if you want to snipe someone, the sniper must either be in the mid or the defense area.

    The mid is still open, but nobody seemed to complain about getting demolished there. All PASS Time maps have an open mid anyway. So I guess it's good now.


    The other problem is the vents. I thought that I was done with it in the A1 version, but I got proven wrong. Apparently, even if you place a sign about the presence of dihydrogen monoxide, it wouldn't make players care about what is awaiting them. Barely anyone seems to have a desire to have some explanations about what is what - only touch it and experience it. With this mindset in mind, it was a living hell for some easy-minded players to hang there.

    In this version, if you get out of the chemical water, you will stop receiving damage. That means you can freely walk in the vents. However, the water now will damage you more. Don't worry. Kunai Spies can survive there, but they will only have seven hp left, which is not a lot. Considering that vent is a place that allows anyone to bypass the whole defense area, I don't think that Kunai spies should go there. They have invis-watches after all.

    Also, the one-way door for the vents now opens twice as fast. Plus, it has a five-second delay before it closes, so anyone can quickly grab a health kit, and get back into the vents to hide. You will hear five beeps before the door starts closing. No idea why it has been suggested, but it sounds hella interesting to experiment with. This gimmick seems complicated, but trust me, it's not that complicated as you might think it is.


    Either way, I really have to thank PootisGodAnimations for giving me feedback about what I should do and shouldn't do, especially about things on the map that didn't make much sense. That also includes which feedback to ignore. I am talking about the ones that didn't make much sense at all.

    I would be very happy if other map-makers could help me giving me thoughtful and constructive feedback, just like PootisGodAnimations did.

    Making PASS Time maps isn't easy. Nor is testing when not a lot of playtesters refuse to playtest this kind of gamemode. Hopefully, the microcontent that 14bit arranged shapes the thoughts of some people while playing PASS Time.

    I could have updated this map back in May, but due to health complications and other life events, I couldn't do it faster. I don't remember every single thing that I changed. I usually track every change by writing it on the WordPad, but not in this version.

    Either way, here's my simplified changelog:
    • Improved optimization:
      • Added lots of hint brushes.
      • Added lots of areaportals + areaportalwindows.
      • Added lots of occluders.
      • Rearranged some skybox brushes for better rendering.
    • Fog changes:
      • Fog start reduced from 3200 to 3000.
      • Fog end reduced from 3800 to 3500.
      • Far Z clipping reduced from 4000 to 3800.
    • Changes to detailing:
      • Added a doorframe in the cave entrance.
      • Added a func_detail wall on each side next to the train tracks.
      • Moved crates next to the newly created wall.
      • Moved tires slightly in the BLU defense base, so it doesn't look like they are about to fall off.
      • Removed lots of trees. Chop, chop.
      • Removed some bushes.
      • Removed shop signs and some of its belongings. It went bankrupt.
      • Removed Driller's vehicle next to the defense spawn.
      • Replaced the bottle models in the defense spawn.
      • Removed and changed some overlays.
      • Removed one wooden lamp in the mid on each side.
      • Replaced one big crate with a small crate, so it's easier for scouts to get on the balcony in the mid.
      • Removed bookshelves in the depo defense spawn.
      • Divided one railing into two parts in the depo defense spawn, so players stop receiving fall damage.
    • Changed vents:
      • Now after getting out of the water, the player stops receiving damage.
      • Damage has been increased from 8 to 14.
      • Spinning vent blades will no longer push the player.
      • One-way vent doors now open twice as fast.
      • One-way vent doors have a five-second delay before they close, indicated with beeping.
    • Improved and changed the lighting in multiple areas.
    • Fixed func_respawnroomvisualizer not appearing in defense spawns.
    • Changed geometry next to the attack spawn, so one rock model stops spamming error messages.
    • Added and improved clipping all around the map.
    • Added a neutral func_respawnroomvisualizer for a one-way door in the building after exiting the cave.
    • Added func_nobuild in some areas. Go build somewhere else!
    • And more which I don't remember.
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