ctf_channel by Saikan

Discussion in 'WIP (Work in Progress)' started by Saikan, Nov 4, 2007.

  1. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    After much frustration trying to get the SDK to at least churn out some decent looking TF2 material, I finally have accomplished enough to start a WIP thread.

    I am making a map called ctf_channel, which will be a smaller-sized CTF map similar to 2fort. My main goal is to create a CTF map that isn't overly large, but doesn't consist of confined spaces, and doesn't have intelligence placed in extremely protective areas with minimal entrance and exit routes.

    Here's a few pics of my work so far (sorry for the awkward sizes, TF2 wasn't capturing screenshots well for me):

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    As you can see, all 4 of these pictures are from the main red "base" area. This is really the only area I have created so far, and represents about 20% of the map. This will be one of the main conflict areas where the red intelligence is placed.

    I plan on having between 4 and 6 full-sized rooms like the ones in the pictures, then a few very short hallways/tunnels connecting them.

    Percentage complete:

    Red Base Area: 75%:
    Blue Base Area: 0%
    Water Channel: 0%
    Road Tunnel System: 0%
    Hallways 0%

    I'll post more screens as I continue to work on it this week. Please tell me what you like or don't like, and if you have any suggestions or ideas!

    Thanks for looking.
     
  2. Daedalus

    Daedalus Guest

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    Thats a very nice looking level there - great work! Can't wait to see the rest of it.
     
  3. Intraman

    Intraman L4: Comfortable Member

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    Oh this looks really nice so far. I can't really tell from the screens but it looks like it could use a some small protective things here and there. Particularly near the top of the ramp in the last picture.
     
  4. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    Cool, I will consider adding in more cover. The top of the ramp is where I'm planning to have the intelligence, and I don't want it easily campable (like in 2fort), so I'll have to come up with a way to put stuff there without making it impossible to get the intelligence.
     
  5. Armadillo of Doom

    aa Armadillo of Doom Group Founder, Lover of Pie

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    I really like what you're trying to do. The large open space piled w/ a lot of junk should provide some very intense fights :) One thing I think you should consider adding is a ramp system w/ a few tall towers. Battling on multiple levels is fun, and not enough maps have that.
     
  6. Intraman

    Intraman L4: Comfortable Member

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    ^ that I agree with.

    And I was assuming the the top of the ramp was the exit for the base heh. You could still put a few small crates and other stuff there. Nothing that adds to much cover but just so it doesn't look so plain.
     
  7. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    Awesome tips guys, I especially like the towers one, and I now how the perfect spots in my map for it.


    This new pic shows the tunnel exiting the red base. This is only the first exit (there wll be more, either small doorways or something), but is the largest. Right now it's just geometery, and I haven't placed any models and overlays, so forgive the blandness and lack of cover.

    [​IMG]


    Now, this is around the bend in the tunnel, as it leads to the bridge over the "channel" (get it? the map name. har har!). This large "bend" in the tunnel allows attackers to move up in two segments, rather than one, and the little recess in the wall will either have a resting station (with medkits, ammo, etc), or possibly even one of the doorways into the red base.

    [​IMG]


    Now, this next picture is from inside the tunnel, looking out through a blown-out wall. Players will be able to drop out of this wall, down into the shallow water of the canal as one of the exits, or continue further down the tunnel. I had to place large "obstacle walls" in the tunnel here to break up the visual line of sight down the tunnel. Again, there are no models/overlays here so it looks bland, but it is the basic geometery.

    [​IMG]


    Now, if you pass by this opening, you reach the other end of the bridge. I have this "closed off", and it will not lead to the blue base via a rocky-bend like on the red side. I want this map to be fairly symmetrical, but not identically so. Thus, instead, there is a doorway leading outside the bridge into the channel.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2007
  8. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    Ah, now here is a picture from the channel itself. It's very sparse at the moment, and I plan on adding some junk for cover. This might be a good place for one or two concrete towers. If you look at the top-right of the bridge, you can see the doorway exiting it. On the other side of the bridge, right in the middle, is where the blown-out part of the wall is, allowing players to drop down into the channel.

    [​IMG]


    And finally, here is a pic from the skeleton that will become the blue base. The design is nearly identical to the red base, except things are switched around just a little bit to give blue it's own feel.

    [​IMG]

    Anyways, more to come soon. Thanks for the input so far.
     
  9. Intraman

    Intraman L4: Comfortable Member

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    Its looking better and better!
     
  10. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    If anyone wants to get creative and toss some suggestions for how the main areas should connect, I'm all ears, and if I use your ideas in the map, I will credit you in the bsp.

    Here's the basic layout:

    [​IMG]


    The arrows symbolize where main traveling nodes are (they are only color coded to show which team would most likely be using them). Obviously they aren't positioned exactly, just in general areas where players will move to and from.

    Feel free to open paint shop pro, doodle on it where you think some good hallways, buildings, whatever, etc would be then repost it here so I can see your ideas!
     
  11. Ziggurat

    Ziggurat L1: Registered

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    I'm curious, why did you decide to go with a flipped copy of the bases instead of rotated?
     
  12. Octopus

    Octopus Guest

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    Looks really cool, I was thinking about making a map like that, are you going to be able to just cut right across the channel? Because that makes the bridge kind of useless.
     
  13. MrTwitch

    MrTwitch Guest

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    I'm going to draw all over your map :)

    I think you should consider adding a second spawn zone to each base, maybe even a third if there's room. This map looks big and the more exits the better.
     
  14. ryodoan

    ryodoan Resident Bum

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    My only thought (and I have not looked at the map more, I will in a bit) is that if the map is made up mostly of large open areas then snipers get to have a field day and then you have half your team convert to snipers and gameplay just sorta bogs down...
     
  15. killanator

    killanator Guest

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    well, i havent looked much yet, but if you havent already and it is big and open, then put cover for snipers. also try to make a good route for spys to go, most custom ctf maps make it hard for spies
     
  16. ryodoan

    ryodoan Resident Bum

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    Uhg, on a large map the last thing you want is more cover for snipers, because what will happen is a couple people start off as sniper, and they start killing lots of people, so then about half the people on both teams switch to sniper to kill the other snipers, suddenly you are only left with scouts and snipers. Snipers to kill the snipers, and scouts praying they can run fast enough to avoid the snipers. Then both defenses will set up a sentry near the intelligence and the scouts cant take out the sentry. So a couple scouts will switch to demo man and soldier, but they cant move fast enough and enemy snipers will wipe them out. This leads to a massive stalemate until the Sudden Death round.

    Someone else mentioned it, but since I am on my lunch break I whipped up an amazingly accurate MSPaint diagram:
    [​IMG]

    The left part of the picture is the impression I got of how the map is currently layed out, the right part is what I feel would be a more interesting layout.

    Another thought I had from looking at the screenshots is that people usually like to guard the flag (intelligence) with engineers, and I don't know if you were trying to discourage that, but the way it looks to be right now is that if I put a turret on top of the intelligence its not going to have the range to hit a soldier or a sniper that stands at one of the entrances and just blasts it away and I don't have any cover up on the intelligence platform.

    Overall that looks like a pretty sweet map though and I cant wait to play it on the server.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2007
  17. MrTwitch

    MrTwitch Guest

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    Here dude, I don't think you should change it from flipped to rotated but I have some simple suggestions. First, like I said, a second respawn so there aren't shitty spawn massacres. Also the humongous channel could be divided up with a dam/gate thing and a broken highway/causeway could be collapsed on top of everything to add cover.
    You add a simple underground passage to the main channel, that comes out on the other side of the gate to provide an alternate route.

    Eh Eh?
     
  18. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    Ziggurat: I'm curious, why did you decide to go with a flipped copy of the bases instead of rotated?

    I didn't actually copy the red base at all. I built a blue version from the ground up like the red version, but I didn't want it to be identical, so I didn't build it exactly the same. Some things are off center, or positioned differently. But it's not final, in fact, it's not even really a rough draft. I just started it to get an idea of what I wanted.


    Octopus: Looks really cool, I was thinking about making a map like that, are you going to be able to just cut right across the channel? Because that makes the bridge kind of useless.

    No. There will be entrances/exits to and from the channel. The channel is not connected to the main bases in any way except through these special entrances and exits. You will not be able to see the channel from either base, nor either base from the channel. This is for two reasons. Firstly, it's for balancing issues, because one big room maps suck, and secondly, for technical reasons, that it would horribly bog down the VIS engine and 95% of players would probably have major FPS issues.


    MrTwitch: I think you should consider adding a second spawn zone to each base, maybe even a third if there's room. This map looks big and the more exits the better.

    I definately agree. I only labeled the spawns on my overview to give a general idea of where the teams will spawn from. There aren't any actual rooms built yet, but I will most certainly use Valve's method (which is basically what you summed up) by having spawning "rooms" that have multiple exits out into each "base" area.


    Ryodoan: My only thought (and I have not looked at the map more, I will in a bit) is that if the map is made up mostly of large open areas then snipers get to have a field day and then you have half your team convert to snipers and gameplay just sorta bogs down...

    Very true. However, the map is only open right now because the channel and blue base are in very rough draft versions. It's the basic framework, soon to be filled with junk, tunnels, dams, pillars, etc. I really want snipers to have a few great spots to work from in this map, as I feel Valve's maps cater very poorly to snipers, but obviously like you said, you don't want both teams having 5+ snipers. Balancing will be tricky here, but as long as much of the cover is in the middle of the open areas, and not on the edges, it should be feasible.


    Killanator: well, i havent looked much yet, but if you havent already and it is big and open, then put cover for snipers. also try to make a good route for spys to go, most custom ctf maps make it hard for spies

    There are definately plans for snipers to have access to some good corner spots or overlooks, as well as a small tower or two, allowing them to feel moderately safe and fire off some shots without dying every 2 seconds. As far as spies go, I'm trying to keep some of the hallways and routes a little more open so there's less "running into" other team players, breaking cloak (which I hate!). I also plan on putting in a lot of little "dead end" offshoots in the map, where a spy could duck in behind a crate and let cloak refresh, or watch for a passerby to hop out, trail them, and deliver a backstab!


    Ryodoan Post #2: Someone else mentioned it, but since I am on my lunch break I whipped up an amazingly accurate MSPaint diagram:

    Your picture is pretty close to the current layout, except that the bridge does not connect both bases, just one. It's simply a traveling path from the red base to the channel. The Blue base will have an equal traveling path, except that instead of a bridge it may be an underground tunnel (like on 2fort). Then both bases will probably have 2 or 3 seperate paths to the channel, in the form of doors, small computer rooms, tunnels, etc. Originally, I had the layout in the method you suggested, with a base above the bridge on the right side, but this was drawing me back too close to the symmetrical design I am wanting to avoid. I would rather only have one team view the bridge as their "big" entrance to the channel, and have the other team look at another area as their "big" entrance, if that makes sense.


    MrTwitch Post #2: Here dude, I don't think you should change it from flipped to rotated but I have some simple suggestions. First, like I said, a second respawn so there aren't shitty spawn massacres. Also the humongous channel could be divided up with a dam/gate thing and a broken highway/causeway could be collapsed on top of everything to add cover.
    You add a simple underground passage to the main channel, that comes out on the other side of the gate to provide an alternate route.


    Agreed on the second respawn. As I was talking about a little earlier, respawns aren't even built, but they certainly won't be campable in any shape or form, and the channel is going to be broken up by quite a few large objects, pillars, tunnels, etc. And you directly hit my plans with your underground passage idea! This is exactly what I was thinking for another "connection" between the bases and the channel somewhere. In your pic you've got channel obstacles right where I planned on placing many of them, and you're connection suggestions from each base are very balancing, which I like. I definately do not plan on having the blue-base side have a road up to the bridge like the red side through, again, for the symmetry issues. Blue will most likely have a large underground tunnel go from somewhere in their base, to the channel, with the exit being in the south end of the channel (like red has from the bridge on the north end).


    So far, I'm really excited with all the suggestions you guys have given me. I'm glad you are looking forward to this map, I can't wait to finish it for you and use some of your ideas. If you still have concepts you think would be neat in a map (nothing outrageous of course, hah), fire away!
     
  19. killanator

    killanator Guest

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    ok lemme rephrase my comment. i meant put cover out in the middle of the map for other peopole. i shouldve said cover from snipers
     
  20. Saikan

    Saikan L1: Registered

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    Oh, definately. I will have cover on the outskirts of the channel, but a large portion of it will be in the dead middle. If you played through HL2: Episode Two, you might remember that one part where you have to crawl inbetween all the cars and junk to avoid getting shot by the autoguns. That's the kind of effect I want going in the channel. Vulnerable from the outside, but lots of stuff for you to blitz to and hide behind. A scout should have no problem zipping across from cover to cover and (usually) not getting nailed while he moves in close to kill the sniper. A heavy on the other hand would have to be extra cautious, but once he made it across, he'd be in the smaller rooms connecting the channel and bases and have the advantage over the sniper.