Isn't there some kind of trick to lighting maps?

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by mmik, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    The lighting part was what made me quit trying to make my first map a year ago, and coming back to this part of mapping is reminding me why.

    Even following several guides I just don't understand what I'm doing wrong.

    I at one point had a light every couple feet and my map still wouldn't light up enough, and definitely didn't look realistic.

    So is there something about lighting a map that I'm just not getting? Right now I have two spotlights in a room of my map, and a light environment above the entire map. I have no idea what to do with the shadow control, so I just angled it the same as my light_environment. The spotlights are made up of point_spotlight and light_spot. The stupid things don't add a bit of light to the room other than the cylinder shape they produce.

    I don't need a guide on how to turn lights to face the right direction; I've read 5 of those. : (
    (note: sorry about the rage in this post, but this is pretty upsetting stuff)
     
  2. Icarus

    aa Icarus

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    Try looking at a decompiled VALVe map.

    They proved as excellent examples to get me started on lighting.
     
  3. Armadillo of Doom

    aa Armadillo of Doom Group Founder, Lover of Pie

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    I had a similar issue w/ those 2 entities. You have to make sure they aren't embedded in each other or a prop. Point_spotlight just provides the cone as a special effect. Light_spot is an actual cone-shaped light source.
     
  4. Beetle

    Beetle L9: Fashionable Member

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    Hey mmik, did you know the light_environment gathers light from the skybox texture? So if you create a map without skybox brushes, then put a light_environment in, it will not light at all from that entity.
     
  5. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    thanks beetle, I didn't know that, but I do have the skybox in. (and not default, either. :D )

    I'm playing l4d right now, but I'll try checking out a valve map later. Is there a link to one decompiled that's a good example, or do I need to get a program myself?
     
  6. Xi.Cynx

    aa Xi.Cynx Former Alias: †Blade†

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    Yea the big thing I had my first time was putting the light_spot inside of the actual prop mesh which caused the light to get stuck inside of it. Same thing went for the point_spotlight it was inside the prop mesh and couldn't get out.

    Bad Way to do it:
    [​IMG]

    Good Way to do it:
    [​IMG]
     
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  7. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    That's how the only guide I looked at this time around had it. -_-

    I'm gonna try right now to move mine out and see how much of a difference it makes. I'd still like to see a valve map, though.

    Oh, and can anyone explain how to set shadow control? The kid said set it the same direction as the sun, but set x at 1-90.

    Well how do I know what number is the best?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  8. Beetle

    Beetle L9: Fashionable Member

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    When you say this, do you actually mean you made a brush and textured it with the texture named "skybox"? When I say "Do you have a skybox?" I do not mean the skybox name in the map properties. Your "default" comment at the end made me re-think how i explained it.
     
  9. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    yay! Pulling the lights out a bit worked. Here's what the room looks like right now: [​IMG]

    As you can see, the lower areas need to be better lit still. i'm going to add a side area (fenced off to the player) with a lamp or something near the bottom to give off lower lighting. I think I read about changing the cone of the light... Does it seem like my lights should shine farther down than what they are for this room?
     
  10. Xi.Cynx

    aa Xi.Cynx Former Alias: †Blade†

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    Well when setting up the Shadow_Control this is what I did:

    I made the Pitch Yaw Roll (YZX) almost the same as the light_env. My light_env is set at 0 240 0 as to where I set my Shadow_control at 30 240 0 just to give it a little more lean towards the y axis and not straight with it. the shadow color should be close to the ambient and ambientHDR colors. the Maximum Distance is well.. obviously the max distance your going to let the shadows travel before fading off, I used 75 as it's no to far yet not to short to seem like it just ends abruptly. Make sure All Shadows Disabled is set to No.
     
  11. Xi.Cynx

    aa Xi.Cynx Former Alias: †Blade†

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    To your post above mine which i didn't see cause i was posting the one above this one... Lol:

    I wouldn't say farther down, maybe a smidgen, but try to widen the cone up a little bit maybe... 10 degrees more for both of them... cause they seem pretty narrow right now for how far away they are from the wall... at least from this angle...

    Also make sure you change the size of the point_spotlight too, cause with the way the light is the spotlight would be much much wider than it currently is. at least 3 times as wide...
     
  12. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    sorry beetle, yes I DO have skybox painted. I have my map completely surrounded by one.

    Now it's sounding like the shadow control is just gonna have to be guess-and-check work, eh? I can do that I guess. It'll take some messing around though.

    I don't wanna flood the board with my topics, so I'll ask some random questions here.

    Is it possible at all to build things on the other side of a skybox brush without having them show through? Considering the way it works, I really don't think there is. Is there maybe some kind of brush or entity I can place that doesn't allow anything to be viewed from one side?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  13. Beetle

    Beetle L9: Fashionable Member

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    No, skybox brushes should be the last barrier between your map's inside and the void.
     
  14. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    Hey I added another light source, and I think it helped quite a bit. For some reason the lantern model (on) wasn't showing up in game, though, so I gotta use the one that looks off until I can figure out what's wrong with it. I don't know why, but the on/off lantern models are separate, rather than separate skins.

    [​IMG]

    Edit: It appears my pitchfork is floating.. haha
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  15. YM

    aa YM LVL100 YM

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    The on lantern is a dynamic prop, it needs to be a prop_dynamic.
     
  16. Laz

    Laz L7: Fancy Member

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    make sure you up the brightness a bit. when choosing the color, the first 3 are the RGB values, the fourth is the brightness. Default light entities tend to be quite dark.

    propper lighting is one of the hardest things, it can make or break your atmosphere in the map.
     
  17. FaTony

    FaTony Banned

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    Why no1 has asked about leaks in his map?
     
  18. mmik

    mmik L2: Junior Member

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    Thanks for the help, Youme. And thanks a lat, laz. I know I was clicking the brightness option and going "wtf, colors?". That explains it. I'll probably end up spending a week on lighting my map alone.

    Last I checked I didn't have any leaks in the compiler, but that might have changed. And the only way I checked was to ctrl+f "leak", and I don't know if all of the leaks are labeled in the compiler. I know I have some weird errors in my console when I load up the map, but I was going to wait until I was done to ask about them.

    I do have a question, though. I've been using prop_static for a lot of things, and if the things don't have physical models, the console yells at me for setting it to Vphysics (default), so I've been just changing them to "no physical model" or however it's worded. Is this ok, or is there a better way to place models like those?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  19. Psy

    aa Psy The Imp Queen

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    Regarding the static props, what you are currently doing is perfectly fine. :)
     
  20. Earl

    Earl L6: Sharp Member

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    You also seem to be using model textures on world brushes.