Developer video of koth_viaduct

Discussion in 'Featured News' started by YM, Aug 21, 2009.

  1. YM

    aa YM LVL100 YM

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    From the tf2 blog:

    We thought you might be interested in seeing some of the "behind the scenes" work that goes on in Team Fortress 2. The process usually starts with a team discussion: This helps us determine the goals of the map we're going to build. In this case, we wanted a game mode that had an intense, centralized experience with quick player turnaround. We liked some of the facets of Arena mode, but it was clear that many players don't like to wait for the next round to play.

    The sooner we could prototype the new mode, the sooner we could start gathering data on it. To this end, we converted some of the existing arena maps and started experimenting. Some were more successful than others. We quickly found out that fun arena maps weren't necessarily fun KOTH maps. Playtesting the new mode on existing maps helped us explore various ideas that we used to generate rough sketches of what would become Viaduct. In order to get some real data on its success or failure as fast as possible, we used Hammer to quickly turn the sketches into a very rough version of the map. Then we started playing.

    Here's a timelapse video showing the evolution of Viaduct:

    -Video-

    Here's another that shows the map coming together as a whole:

    -Video-

    We playtest daily. Almost every version you can see in the timelapse video was at one point tested with a mix of experienced and new players. That way, decisions are driven by the observations and feedback generated by the test. As an example, at one point several sessions in, it felt as though the player wasn't being given enough of a "cool-down" period after being in the action at the control point. The pacing was actually too intense. In addition, teams that captured the zone felt they had no space in which to keep control, due to the continuous stream of enemies pouring into the space. This devalued some classes significantly, like the Engineer. We were able to address both of these issues through the creation of an area in front of the respawn rooms. This allowed us to push the spawn points further away from the control point.

    Once the map started progressively improving in terms of playability, we started to feel more confident about the new game mode. Now the art pass could begin. We were still playtesting the map throughout this phase, though the layout changes tend to be on a smaller scale (such as moving health and ammo, adjusting jump distances between objects for classes, and addressing sniper sight line issues). The snow, as you can see from the timelapse, was a late addition—the idea was put forward to extend the alpine theme and provide a new, visually interesting space to fight in.

    Link - http://www.teamfortress.com/post.php?id=2754
     
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  2. A Boojum Snark

    aa A Boojum Snark Toraipoddodezain Mazahabado

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    Very neat. I want more of this kind of stuff!
     
  3. TMP

    aa TMP Abuser of Site Rules

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    Same!
     
  4. BagOfChips

    BagOfChips L5: Dapper Member

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    bah
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2009
  5. Void

    aa Void Local Man Unable To Map, Sources Say

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    Where's the clip where they find Glacier and go through all the legal documentation to get around it and release Viaduct anyways?
     
  6. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

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    And that answers my question of whether Valve uses point_devshot_camera.

    Now if I also had a distributed map compilation farm I might start keeping that kind of revision-by-revision stuff, but I don't :p
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2009
  7. A Boojum Snark

    aa A Boojum Snark Toraipoddodezain Mazahabado

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    Double post threads a half hour after the official post?
    /ragemerge :p

    and that isn't us being mentioned either.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2009
  8. BagOfChips

    BagOfChips L5: Dapper Member

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    I saw tf2 map making community as tf2maps hah.

    Why does valve owe the maker of glacier anything? He doesn't own a copy right on snow textures. It's not like they used his textures.

    They didn't have any legal documentation to go through.
     
  9. FlavorRage

    FlavorRage L4: Comfortable Member

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    I do believe that was a joke ;)
     
  10. Engineer

    aa Engineer

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    Wow, it was nice to sse the changes :) I waant more of these videos. But it would be actually fun if we could get an early dev version of goldrush or sawmilll and etc. :)
     
  11. Hobbes

    Hobbes L1: Registered

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    This was interesting to watch, it's funny how they don't spend much time with dev textures and pretty much just increment with normal textures.
     
  12. HeaH

    HeaH L8: Fancy Shmancy Member

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    Dr. Pepper is in the top 10 frag video - 2 times!

    Actually, that video wasn't that good
     
  13. Tekku

    aa Tekku

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    Ah interesting video..
     
  14. The Political Gamer

    aa The Political Gamer

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    Funny how it was alpine before it was snow.
     
  15. jpr

    aa jpr

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    I wanna do something like this with my next map...
     
  16. FlavorRage

    FlavorRage L4: Comfortable Member

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    Technically the snow is just alpine with a few new materials and models... :O
     
  17. Acumen

    aa Acumen Annoyer

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    man, that's nice to see these videos online today.
    a while ago i searched the cs:s timelines valve released for the turtlerock maps and didn't find them.
    even though i don't really map, i just love looking at such developing cycles. just a personal fetish i guess :D
     
  18. Hawk

    Hawk L7: Fancy Member

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    I'd love for Valve to do a video where they follow the creation of the map, but have one of the devs talk us through it and tell us about what led to some of the decisions they made.
     
  19. grazr

    aa grazr Old Man Mutant Ninja Turtle

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    I've tried to record incremetals of 3 of my mapping projects. Not only do i frequently forget to record big changes when i'm "on a roll" but it pushes production time into.. nearly twice as long as it should be. I don't doubt i would have released pl_flint mid summer if i wasn't faffing about recording images and different vmf versions of it.

    I had hoped to make an article about the design process as most people seem to just presume you lay out your map then make it work as best you can. Design being a battle to fight with brute force against things that don't work.

    Which, obviously, you don't.

    Or not so obviously, apparently.
     
  20. Stupoider

    Stupoider L1: Registered

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    .. The thing I most enjoyed about those videos, was the music. They gave Rocket Jump Waltz a bit of a flair!