KotH Degeneration

Discussion in 'Map Factory' started by DrLambda, May 13, 2015.

  1. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    Combine the casual, rocketjumping, multiple high levels feel of tdm_hightower with the wild airblasting pyros, deathfalls and hidden side paths of Upward, add a small pool for pyrosharks, garnish it with a interwoven layout shaped in a kinda-innovative (for KOTH) U-shape and you get: koth_degeneration.

    I'm almost finished with koth_temper, and i tried my hands on a few different maps, but this is the one i want to complete. It has a layout that is a mixture of pre-planning, rapid prototyping and whatnot that turned out to be fun. I might even add a few more things to it, like a rocketjumpable balcony on the tower at the point, and maybe even an "even-more-outwards-route" from the platforms near spawn to the plattforms exiting the building on the outer side of the cliff, giving even more low ground to the classes that like that, should snipers prove to be too problematic - I sure did try to fix the most broken sightlines (But there are still enough points where Snipers can shoot at each other and be killed by mobile classes like the balcony on Hightower.)

    The first "internal" playtest was a lot of fun. There is always happening somewhere, like a more compact version of King or, yeah, let's say Hightower. I think i really hit the mark on many layout decisions by accident ;) It feels organic, and that's what i was going for. I hope a few of you like it even a bit as much as i enjoy it right now.

    Right now, I'm not 100% on what i'm going for visually. The cliffs etc are really "Upward"-y, but i'm still thinking about other options, like the white cliffs of Dover or similar.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  2. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    Oops, forgot to pack the Pyroshark overlay. Should you encounter pink checkers, remember that it is supposed to look like this:

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Requiem

    Requiem L1: Registered

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    I think you should create a wind god pyro warning sign....
     
  4. Ynders

    aa Ynders absolutely gormful

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    You say you want an upward theme, but I think this map would be absolutely bitchin' with a skyscraper theme.
     
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  5. Kingdom

    Kingdom L1: Registered

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    Oh man, that first screenshot reminds me of that old balloon race map.

    As for the theme I think that some sort of mountainside resort would be cool enough.
     
  6. Muddy

    Server Staff Muddy Muddy

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    I second this notion. In fact, I want to do this now.
     
  7. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    That sounds like a really interesting idea, but i'd really have to think about how to make those outer orange paths up to the control point look good in skyscraper form. I'll search for a few references.
    I think it'll stay in dev texture form for a few weeks from now, because i really want to get this into a few playtests first. But i'll really take your idea into consideration, because i have quite a few ideas how the finished product could look right now. Thanks :)
     
  8. ExtraCheesyPie

    ExtraCheesyPie L7: Fancy Member

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    You could make it a crane, some kind of spytechy laser attachment, scaffolding, or some kind of collapsed part.
     
  9. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    Another longer internal test showed the following:

    1. It is possible to build a teleporter in the spawn doors. That is kinda easy to fix, but for now allows spies to enter the spawnroom of the other team.
    2. All the most outlying paths and the cap point area are too small. Expect these areas to double in size and the way from lower to cap point get redesigned.
    3. I really want another route. It's a bit to easy to hold down cap. I might add one from the lower spawn exit up to above the lower walkable buildings on both sides, probably with a tunnel from mid to those paths. Maybe i'll even add a second route to lower, who knows. I want everyone to get from everywhere to everywhere else fast, with a little advantage for mobile classes.
     
  10. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    So, i read the feedback from US gameday. Sorry about the HDR, it's really hard to test for me and i was pretty sure i wired it up correctly. I'll make extra sure that everything works as intended for the next release.
    I'll have a deeper look at the other problems, especially how much of the map gets used and how. Hopefully i can find a demo of the gameday.
    I understand that the building between the spawns isn't used much right now. I was fearing that making it more prominent would make spawncamping easier, i thought of it as a way to get in the back of the other team.
    What i don't get right now is the comments about the sightlines. I made extra sure that there is only a single sightline greater than 2000 units for anyone who could abuse this, and that is the one from the outer cliff to the back entrance of the building between the spawns, which forces you to pretty much stand on the edge of the cliff in plain sight and close distance to the enemy spawn.
    About the scale - As i said in the last post, the path from lower to the point is way to cramped and will be made way bigger than it is right now. There are a few other posts about the scale - Is it the scale of the playable area or is it the height of the buildings and the cliffs? Because it'd be kinda easy to fix that.

    *Edit: Almost forgot - Thanks a lot for testing. You guys are awesome!
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
  11. Géza!

    Géza! L4: Comfortable Member

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    I'd suggest just not bothering with a HDR compile at the alpha stage
     
  12. HQDefault

    aa HQDefault ...what

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    Actually, I do it right off the bat before I forget
     
  13. killohurtz

    aa killohurtz Distinction in Applied Carving

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    In the early stages of development, HDR is neither necessary nor expected, and is quite frankly a waste of time. It's like detailing an alpha; your map doesn't need to look pretty when it's being tested for the layout.
     
  14. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    I never actually intended additional detailing on the lighting side of things. The compile times are just very short (nothing compared to the 30-minute-compiles of GoldSRC in 2003) so i just compiled with -both. I even added hdr settings, but forgot to wire it up. I never got to see that it had errors because i'm not playing with bloom usually. Sorry for that.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
  15. Lain

    aa Lain Resident wrong opinion holder

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    The main problems with this map in the gameday where

    1. Airblast - It completely destroys the point and everything on it.

    2. Directioning - Nobody knew where to go, there where people who played the map for a good 15 minutes before finding the point. That is not good.

    3. The Point - With many different interesting fighting areas around the map, you would think they would be used. But unfortunately, because everyone is funneled to the point (the weakest fighting area I might add) It doesn't do the other areas justice. Maybe a moving hill with a CTF-styled pointer towards where it is would be cool, if not hard.
     
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  16. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    A2 released

    Long changelog and new screenshots in the description.

    Written summary: I completely redid the point and added an outer lower ground, giving more options of attack. Also, because of the complete change of the point, taking the low ground doesn't feel as useless, hopefully taking some weight from the high ground as i wanted to do from the start.
    Also added direction pointers (maybe even a bit much of them, actually), a custom dev texture (because bright orange pretty much made the lights look way to bright), completely redid the lighting, lowered the height of the cliffs and the buildings.

    Airblasting, FAN and similar shouldn't be as prevalent as they were while still being a relevant part to the map.

    I'm kinda okay with the building between the spawn not being used much because if that were the case, it would add a lot of pressure to the spawn room.

    The new capture point has way more ways of attack, and even some special ones for the mobile classes (like small battlements for explosive jumpers to jump on, or the good old roof with a hole.) The low ground entrance point isn't as easily controlled as it was before.
    It might be a bit easy to snipe in and out from high ground, and i'm a bit scared of that, but it's still below 2000hu, so i think it should at least be tested that way.

    When i'm getting to detailing, i will probably need some custom signs, but for now, i used some pretty crude sprays i wrote myself where simple arrows weren't enough. Bask in their glory:
    [​IMG]

    I'm looking forward to the next playtest.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  17. worMatty

    aa worMatty Repacking Evangelist

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    Hi, DrLambda.

    You asked about demos. The demo of each play test is available on the Feedback mini site.

    Since you are using dev textures at the moment, experimenting with HDR settings is perhaps best left for the beta stage, from an efficiency point of view. You may want, or need to adjust your tonemap controller settings later, after you have begun to use normal textures, to achieve the best effect. The time spent on it at this stage could be better-used. HDR dev textures aren't any more attractive than LDR.

    2000HU sounds fair, for a sniper sightline. That's what you typically get in 2Fort between the two balconies. And Doublecross is 2600~ units from one end of the bridge to the other, though there are obstacles in the way. I did playtest the map but I was having so much fun as a pyro I didn't get very far around it. Perhaps concerns about sightlines are in places where a player feels exposed, or where a sniper could hide easily behind or between slim pieces of cover, perhaps exploiting angles in the architecture, to avoid being spotted.
     
  18. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    Thanks, i already watched it. What i meant was that they weren't available right after the gameday. They took a while to upload, but they were very helpful to find out what were the problems with the map. I'm actually positively surprised by how helpful they were and how constructive most of the people were. While there was some, I was expecting a lot more rtv'ing and bashing. I'm very happy about how nice and helpful this community is.

    I understand that now, but i have to admit that i didn't for the first few weeks of Source mapping. My problem here was that i'm still used to GoldSRC (HLDM / CS) mapping, where you pretty much only removed compile parameters when the compile time became to high, and i was able to compile this map in less than 2 minutes, and because i wasn't playing with bloom myself, i didn't know that using that option without setting it up correctly can actually make the map look way worse.
    That's one of the things i still have to get used to. I think while the new options of the Source engine are awesome, the old compilers were a lot more foolproof than now - You could be pretty sure that you can ship a map after you compiled it. Now, you have to build cubemaps, manually included textures (there were options to do that automatically with GoldSRC) and check a whole lot of different graphic settings for yourself. Deploying a map has become way more cumbersome than before.

    Yeah, 2000hu was what i read in most tutorials for a reasonable sightline in TF2, and i'm absolutely always trying to follow it. I mean, i want the high ground to be dangerous and scary to take, because you can reach the CP quite a bit faster that way, but i don't want it to be impossible to take once the other team controls the CP.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2015
  19. DrLambda

    aa DrLambda L69: Teeheehee, Member

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    Oh, after writing two post that could as well be short stories - Someone asked on Gameday what degeneration meant in the context of the map - What do you do in this map? Fall down. Thus, downfall. Downfall has a few different meanings. A thesaurus of a different meaning is Degeneration, which also has a different meaning, which i can show off with run-down buildings and whatnot.
    I just hope it doesn't become a prophecy and the gameplay degenerates. Heh.
     
  20. worMatty

    aa worMatty Repacking Evangelist

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    Sounds fair!

    I think of degeneration as a gradual process. I think an abandoned building style as you suggest would be an excellent fit.