Dev textures and why you should NOT use them.

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by The Political Gamer, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. luxatile

    aa luxatile deer

    Positive Ratings:
    You make some pretty good points, and I've learned to texture my early alphas if the initial layout works. It saved me some work, which I think is nice.

    However, in koth_shell I still used dev textures in a1 and kept many of them for a2-a5 because would rather start out with plain red walls than some ugly building made entirely of repeating brown wood. I just think it looks better, and when I start to texture, I spend some time to align and vary the textures I use, which means that starting out with them is a pain in the ass.

    Or, as an alternative to this post, read grazr's post again.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  2. FaTony

    FaTony Banned

    Positive Ratings:
    I personally never use dev textures in not-testing maps. I hate them.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  3. jpr

    aa jpr

    Positive Ratings:
    Using regular textures in alpha stage drains my will to map. I'd rather use dev textures, they look a lot cleaner, work well as placeholders if you're not sure about your map's art style, and also after texturing you can easily convert the invisible dev textures to nodraw
  4. eerieone

    aa eerieone

    Positive Ratings:
    i have a hard time NOT to detail as soon as possible, once i see a normal texture on my geometry, i can´t leave it looking ugly like that. dev-textures help to keep the head straight on what is important now.
    • Thanks Thanks x 3
  5. A Boojum Snark

    aa A Boojum Snark Toraipoddodezain Mazahabado

    Positive Ratings:
    As people have said, you present this as fact when it really depends on the mapper. I for one love dev textures because I become too attached to a texture and try to build according to what type of material I'm using, which is awkward and slow.

    In addition to that, solid normal textures across big brushes is the ugliest damn thing you can ever do in a map.

    But what I really don't get is how you think they waste time. Visuals is an opinion, mapping style is an opinion, but how does merely using a different texture save any time? It's just as quick to make brushes regardless of what you use, and later down the line all those brushes will be chopped/deleted/retextured anyway. I would in fact argue it takes more time because you can't clone a wall brush and make a roof without retexturing it, something you can do with devs.

    A single valve map timelapse does not indicate what all their mappers do, or even that one on other maps. After all they had begun koth testing with converted arena maps (and presumably community koth maps), and the video shows it was alpine from the beginning. So both structure and theme were fairly decided right from the start.
    • Thanks Thanks x 4
  6. Demonsul

    Demonsul L1: Registered

    Positive Ratings:
    I agree with A Boojum Shark. I presonally am trying to use more dev textures, because I get sidetracked into detailing stupidly easily. I'd much rather make a good map layout with dev textures than fall into the pit of working too small too soon.
  7. Shmitz

    aa Shmitz Old Hat

    Positive Ratings:
    The other big time-saving advantage to building in dev textures is that once you have made a detail pass and are no longer using them, you can do a very quick texture replace and change any remaining dev'd surfaces to nodraw. In like two seconds, you've made sure any hidden surfaces that players won't be seeing are culled at compile time.
  8. Randdalf

    aa Randdalf

    Positive Ratings:
    I just texture replace the dev textures with nodraw and then go over the whole thing... it's easier for me.
  9. DaBeatzProject

    aa DaBeatzProject

    Positive Ratings:
    I always block out in nodraw and while I'm doing that I texture visible faces in dev. I like dev. Although I have problems not starting to detail when i'm blocking out a map.
  10. Psy

    aa Psy The Imp Queen

    Positive Ratings:
    If I didn't stick to dev textures 90% of the time then I would of never finished a map. Helps keep focus on the main goal; gameplay first, detail later.
  11. Seba

    aa Seba DR. BIG FUCKER, PHD

    Positive Ratings:

    My opinion on dev textures is, well...they're dev textures. If nothing's wrong with the layout, I start texturing and detailing and try to release a beta asap.
  12. StoneFrog

    StoneFrog L6: Sharp Member

    Positive Ratings:

    I have mapped for the Goldsrc/Source engines for more than three years. For much of that time, I used to think it was fine to just "wing it" - never work in phases or plan in advance. That couldn't be farther from the truth, and I regret the years I've wasted on projects which inevitably failed as a result. We are lucky in that "detailing" for the Source engine mostly just requires piling props and decals on top of things, as opposed to DOOM, Quake, or Half-Life 1 where everything is effectively part of the level geometry and can be easily designed along with the general layout.

    Do not squander the fact Source map development is very modular. Do not waste time detailing maps as you go along, because it'll be a major hassle to undo those changes when you need to redesign areas. Your art style will come out inconsistent and sloppy.

    That's not to say A1 maps have to be hideous, though. Even when dev-blocking out a map I encourage everyone to alternate between teamcolors and grey for highlights - catching players' attention, et cetera. Even placeholder brush work can be designed to be fairly appealing. Early lighting, skybox ambience, and iconic props are fine too. Some things such as the ground can be textured and even displaced immediately. :)

    But please oh please, don't completely rule out the utility of dev textures.
    • Thanks Thanks x 2
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2009
  13. Freyja

    aa Freyja ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Positive Ratings:
    I used to detail and displace in my first alpha, I never even touched dev textures. It was horrible to edit, and people thought it was a complete map and didn't give me feedback.
    Thus, I use dev textures on my latest map, and I'm loving their handyness.
  14. Bslashingu

    Bslashingu L2: Junior Member

    Positive Ratings:
    This discussion seriously comes up more than whether or not carving is good or bad.

    100% true. When I did fully textured maps, it planted in their minds that the map was done and they were just playing it, and not testing. All the feedback I ever got was "this map sucks", "this looks out of place", "that building is floating."

    I advise anyone that wants serious gameplay feedback to use dev textures instead of real textures. You can spit out a layout in a couple of hours, and begin getting feedback almost immediately if you have a plan. By texturing everything with legit textures, you're just going to get hung up on making them look perfect.
  15. Tapp

    Tapp L10: Glamorous Member

    Positive Ratings:
    I find that dev textures do 2 very important things. First, they can easily be replaced with nodraw. Secondly, they scream 'gameplay is being tested, not visuals!'. I map in 90% dev textures, I put in any major props which will be walked on/important and some thematic ideas so that I won't forget them. I never used to map in dev textures, but I discovered how much easier they are, and you also never forget what parts of the map you haven't finished detailing.
  16. grazr

    aa grazr Old Man Mutant Ninja Turtle

    Positive Ratings:
    No, you use HL2 textures.
    • Thanks Thanks x 2
  17. owly-oop

    aa owly-oop im birb

    Positive Ratings:
    Imagine if no one used dev textures. Then this thread would be "detail your maps first since it looks better than plain textures"