Fantamos' SFM Map Showcase Tutorial

Discussion in 'Tutorials & Resources' started by Fantasma, Jan 19, 2015.

  1. Fantasma

    aa Fantasma

    Positive Ratings:
    Why make a showcase?
    As any content producer will tell you showcasing your product is definitely an important part of it, how else are people supposed to know how much they want to try it out. For me making a map on here is no different, so I've loaded sfm countless times and shown you all something special and here's how you can do the same!

    You'll need sfm
    Your map (with HDR)

    Ok before you load SFM let's do a little tweaking to set you up
    Before loading sfm, in steam right click it, go to “set launch options” and add “-sfm_resolution 1080” This’ll make it so we can render up at 1080p

    When you create your project, it's up to you how organized you want to be however I'm certain you want your frame rate at 60 so go and select that.

    Now with SFM loaded, get a map in there already! Right click the viewport and hit add map, find the map you want and hit ok.
    After a big long black screen your map should be there!

    If you can't find the map you want, you probably haven't placed it in the SFM directory, so go place it in SourceFilmmaker\game\tf\maps

    The map will look a little empty, to fix this right click the primary viewport, go to draw game settings then tick all the boxes excluding “players and npcs“ this’ll tell sfm you want it all to be shown

    Now, you’re probably seeing some flashy lights and stuff, hit the ~ key and type mat_specular 0 this should help out with those problems. Now, when exporting if you see these lights through walls, make sure to set the framerate to 30, until then go at whatever you want.

    Ok, so you’re all set to properly begin


    That big blue thing is your entire scene and those blue boxes inside are your shots.
    Essentially anything inside one shot will not be in the next, you can turn one shot into 2 by placing the blue marker where to split and press b. I personally like to give each camera cut its own shot. Since this is a small tutorial, i'll do just one shot.Navigating the timeline is easy, don't forget the mousewheel will zoom in and out!

    Below the timeline tab, you can see 3 symbols representing the 3 states of the timeline, the scene editor (your current one) your motion editor and graph editor. For this tutorial we'll be using just the scene editor and the motion editor.

    Setting up a camera

    First select the shot then click the arrow next to "Work camera" at the bottom right of the viewport and go to camera, then change scene camera, and hit new camera. This will create a new camera that we will use to record everything.

    Now we need to make you be able to edit it, move it around set up shots and all that jazz, so with the current shot still selected, go to the + in the top left, (Below element viewer) then go to “create animation set(s) for existing elements” and your camera will be there, add that in. The camera will now be in the animation set editor.

    Personally, I like to do all the camera settings I need to at this moment, including Field of view, and Depth of field (You can read how to do this at the bottom of this tutorial), then once that's done, I cut the 1 big shot into smaller ones, this is so I have the camera settings all ready for each shot.

    Creating your motion
    Inside the animation editor (to your left) there should be “camera1” Keep this selected.
    Enter the motion editor (below the timeline tab the middle symbol)

    Now if you have done everything right so far, you should be able to simply place your mouse in the viewport, hold the left click and use the wsad+zx keys, and this will move your camera around, while you do this, the motion editor timeline should go a bronze color. (if you can't move, this could mean that the camera or shot isn't selected)

    Now lets make that camera motion

    Ok, so first, position your camera as to where the camera will be at the beginning of the shot.
    First hit enter to turn your timeline green if it's bronze
    Next move the bar on the side of the timeline (With the triangles) to the end of the shot, so the green overlay only exists at the very end of the shot(but not past the shot) if you have difficulty putting it at the end, click the magnet symbols to off. Keep in mind they still have to be in the grey, just as far out as possible. Like so

    So next put your mouse to the left of it, when the cursor changes drag it out to the very beginning of the shot,(like so) feel free to go further than the grey.

    Basically you just told sfm 2 important points, the beginning point is where you currently are, and the end point is where your camera will end up. This middle part is the motion in the scene. So, before you showed sfm the beginning point, now you need to tell sfm where the end point is.

    Now move your mouse to the viewport, and position yourself where you want your shot to end (keeping in mind the direction of the mouse is also included) If the viewport goes black, then before hand you placed the green timeline past the grey-area.

    Everything is still bronze in the timeline editor so hit enter to confirm the changes
    Now if you scrub (Move the blue marker) along the timeline, you should be able to see the movement, if you’re unsatisfied, hit ctrl-z to make it bronze again and make changes.

    Ok, if you’re happy with everything you can now export!
    Go to export-> Movie and set what you’d like. Personally I use 1080p with a h.264 mp4 format.
    In my advanced settings, I have progressive refinement on, with depth of field and motion blur deselected.

    In layoff settings you can change your fps if you forgot to do so properly before.

    Now export and you should be done!

    Additional Functions
    Depth of field

    Note: If you do this after you make the motion, it will itself be a motion, to remedy this hit ctrl+A to make your entire timeline flat with no motion, making the effect constant. However a changing DOF can be a nice effect.

    So, you wanna know what depth of field is and how to do it?
    So basically depth of field is having a focal plane as defined by you, and everything going outwards from it gradually becoming blurrier. You can define the bluriness by aperture.
    So to set depth of field, load the motion editor, and select the camera in the animation set editor.
    Now, right click the focal distance, and remap the slider range.


    Set your focal plane, and aperture to what you want
    To see your changes, you have to enter the scene editor.
    If you still see nothing, right click the viewport go to render settings, have depth of field checked and have the dropdown set to how smooth you'd like it to be. 1024 is very very nice looking but takes a fuck ton of time to compile, literally 1024x longer than what it'd take.
    If you STILL can't see it, that means your aperture is too low

    Field of view
    Load the motion editor, select your camera, and move around the FOV slider, double click it to add your own value, I used 0.5 in my last showcase. If you want to check out more looks, use the lenses tab and slide from left to right to see what you like


    I see flashing lights through walls help!
    I don't know what causes this, but setting the framerate to 30fps works to fix it.
    I need inspiration

    Here is a playlist of the rest of my showcases
    Can't find my map!
    Make sure the .bsp is in the right directory
    My map has ldr, but I lost the .vmf! How do I compile HDR without recompiling my whole map?
    Create a shortcut to vrad.exe, then right click the short cut and add -hdr -staticproplighting -staticproppolys to the end of the "target" section, if vrad crashes, remove -staticproplighting

    I'm still working on this tutorial, all feedback is appreciated!

    Update 1: Reworded a ton of stuff and added pictures
    • Thanks Thanks x 13
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 29, 2015
  2. Fantasma

    aa Fantasma

    Positive Ratings:
    I've updated this tutorial to make it easier to follow, if anyone has any suggestions on what parts are still confusing please comment!