Introduction and what you can expect from me in the future.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Shogun, May 27, 2014.

  1. Shogun

    Shogun L6: Sharp Member

    Messages:
    262
    Positive Ratings:
    228
    Hi guys, I'm float. I am a 15 year old from New York (the state, not the city) and I'm interested in learning about Hammer and mapping in general. I've always been interested in video games and how they're made, and Hammer seemed like a great start to introduce myself to the world of game development.

    I've got some problems with myself that will unfortunately affect my map-making abilities. I have an scarily low work ethic compared to my friends, if any work ethic at all. In school, I would completely blow off homework assignments because I couldn't bring myself to do them, even though I knew it would hurt my grade. This is carried over to my mapping because I can never stay motivated enough to create a finished product, even if that finished product is just a simple map with dev textures, I couldn't do it. What scares me about this is that making maps is something I love to do, but if I can't even stay motivated to do the things I love, what will I be like in college/the real world? To illustrate how poor my work ethic is, I have been using and learning Hammer for approximately 2 years now, and in that period I have started over 2,000 maps (not including my autosave folder, this is only mapsrc) and I have finished a whopping 0.

    So, in order to force myself to finish something for real, I am working on a small King of the Hill map which will be released completely textured, and optrimized to the best of my abilities, as well as fully lit and with cubemaps built. I realize this is not the desirable path to take, but I'm worried I will lose motivation for finishing any map I release with dev textures, so by texturing the map right off the bat I won't be pressured with as much work.

    Sorry for the huge wall of text, I like to talk. I'm glad to be part of this community and I enjoy seeing all of the amazing stuff that you guys produce. Keep it up!
     
  2. Berry

    aa Berry if you read this you're a nerd

    Messages:
    1,000
    Positive Ratings:
    1,526
    Hiya, if you want mapping you'll definitely find a lot of it here (who would've guessed?)

    If you have any questions you'll surely find an answer here or the steam chat (or maybe the IRC? does anyone even go there?).
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  3. RubbishyUser

    RubbishyUser L7: Fancy Member

    Messages:
    414
    Positive Ratings:
    242
    Goodness, don't be afraid to release a map with dev textures or you feel isn't polished. Everyone starts a new map that way, and it's helps foster feedback and keep you sane because you can break mapping into easy to manage chunks - alpha, beta, and release candidate. Don't feel that you have a bad work ethic "because you can't finish a map" in two years: after all, most maps take that long to finish. No, it's by releasing that map after only a couple of hours of work, getting some feedback and hopefully some compliments, that you can then think about updating it to the next version. Here's how most mappers break it down:

    First alpha: (a0 - a1) It's a map that technically works. It might be terrible, but people can at least spawn, cap points, and kill each other.

    Alpha: (a2 - a10 - or more) Every iteration, the map gets a little bit better. Snipers are shut down. Sentry spots are more refined. Healthpacks are moved. People have more fun. But everything will still be in dev textures. We don't expect to see anything BUT dev textures and the occasional prop. The lighting is barebones, and everything is straight lines, but this is how you work with it.

    Beta: (b1 - b10 or more) This is the detailing. This is the lighting. This is where you put your soundscape in, and you optimize, and you make it look good. Of course, layout changes still happen, but it's mostly detailing. DO NOT FEEL LIKE YOU NEED TO DETAIL IN A SINGLE STROKE. Every now and then, just do a little bit. Fill in a spawn room. Work out some displacements on that hill. Do a little bts room over there. And release a new beta version when you've done a little task and get some feedback. You'll feel better, and you'll make progress. This can take years, but you can do it, one prop at a time.

    Release: (rc1 - forever) This is the trick though. No map is ever truly finished. Sometimes it's a bug that someone finds. Sometimes you muck around with the optimizing just to get it spot on. But here's the thing: that's all ok. No one ever really finishes, they just get fed up for a little while and come back to it later to put out one more version.


    So here's the truth. You don't have a poor work ethic, you just haven't let others help you keep going. Because truth be told, none of us would finish a map if we hadn't had a little help from our mapper friends. We certainly wouldn't be sane - or at least, as sane as we are. If you really feel desperate, just ask for a mapper buddy! Someone help you make that first map special. Someone to take over when you're sick of looking at it and inspire you to go on a few weeks later.

    We've all been where you are. And we want you to join us here. Anything you need, we'll help 24/7.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 3
  4. puxorb

    aa puxorb L69: Emoticon

    Messages:
    455
    Positive Ratings:
    642
    Well your post pretty much describes me, even down to the living in New York part. You just gotta find something that clicks, something that you REALLY want to make. I have a terrible work ethic and can't do more than 10 minutes of school work in a week, but when it comes to hammer I can work 8 hours at a time without eating all day and realize that its already night time.
     
  5. Shogun

    Shogun L6: Sharp Member

    Messages:
    262
    Positive Ratings:
    228

    Seeing everything layed out like that is really helpful. I appreciate you taking the time to write this out for me, it makes everything look so much simpler and not as menacing.
     
  6. TheBestUsername

    TheBestUsername L4: Comfortable Member

    Messages:
    151
    Positive Ratings:
    39
    Reading what you said about your work ethic reminded me of how I used to be less than a year ago. I had that same fear of "If I can't bring myself to do the things I love, how will I ever be happy?" Well, eventually I realized there was only one way; no matter how hard things got, or how much I wanted to start a new project, or how much I wanted to give up, I forced myself to keep going. And once I started doing things that way, it got a whole lot easier to stick to a single project. That's what you're going to have to do, too. There are literally hundreds of people on this forum who dedicate their own time to helping people like you and I, just because they want to help. Make a quick rough draft of a map and put it in a gameday, even if you're afraid it might not be "good enough". Because no matter what, it won't be good enough. Not yet, anyway. But we're all here to help you improve your map, and if you let us help you, eventually your map will be more than just "good enough".

    And do your homework. Please don't make the same mistakes I made.