KotH koth_helix

Discussion in 'Map Factory' started by Empyre, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    This is my first map for TF2, based on an idea from a map I made for TFC long ago. The name comes from the two helical ramps (now four) going around the outside with periodical connections between the two, based loosely on DNA. I plan a series of helix maps, each with a different game mode, and each with a completely different visual theme, so they won't all look alike. I made the smallest and easiest, koth, first.

    Unfortunately, although I was using TF2Maps.net tutorials, it didn't occur to me to post the map here until (I thought) it was nearly done. My friends say it looks and plays great, but while that stokes my ego, it is not necessarily useful.

    I had changed the design away from medieval to a skyscraper, but then I learned that some people are playing this in medieval mode and enjoying it, so I decided to continue developing this as a medieval mode map, while also working on the skyscraper version, which is now named koth_helix_tower.

    I have now released koth_helix_b6!
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
  2. LeSwordfish

    aa LeSwordfish semi-trained quasi-professional

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    The detailing looks decent medieval, but FAR, FAR too dark. Also, the outside of the map is waaay underdetailed- look at how Upward does it as an excellent example of detailing rocks.

    Gameplay, i honestly doubt. That much death-drop does not usually mkae for good gameplay, and it looks veery tight and deathmatchy. Plus, if there's only one helix then does one team spawn aboth another? is the map not symmetrical?
     
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  3. REEJ

    REEJ L7: Fancy Member

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    layout could survive in medieval mode, in any other it will probably get criticized to death
     
  4. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    The inside looks dark to you? I was worried about it being too bright to look like torchlight. Maybe my monitor or vid card or settings are brighter than yours.

    If I use displacements on those already-complicated brushes, would that bring a big performance penalty? Vis already takes almost an hour, mostly on the mountain. I know this because it is much faster when I leave the mountain visgroup unchecked. I was hoping the lower detail on the rocks would not matter much because they are seldom seen because they are beneath the building and beneath the ramps. If the consensus is that more detail is needed, then I'll do it. I'll take a look at Upward, and tutorials about displacements.

    The rail prevents players from falling accidentally. To fall to his death, a player must either jump on purpose, or be pushed. Alternatively, I could wall the players in with a clip brush.

    Yes, the blue team spawns below the control point and red above it. It is symmetrical, but it has a different axis of symmetry than usual. Also, the teams switch after each round, so players who were going up to the control point will then be going down, and vice versa.

    Edit to reply to Reej, who posted while I was typing. I used the medieval textures just because I thought it looked good. I didn't intend it to be melee only. Can servers run it that way if I don't specify that mode? Hmm. I think it could work that way, too.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  5. RagnarHomsar

    RagnarHomsar L2: Junior Member

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    If they set tf_medieval to 1 from the server console, yeah.
     
  6. REEJ

    REEJ L7: Fancy Member

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    dude, make all of these complicated brushes func_detail otherwise your compile will be horrible.
    Any advanced geometry (like wavy, roofs, stairs, small poles etc.) is a bad thing for your vvis, making them func_detail or displacements makes vvis ignore them.

    If you fix these your compile will be like 3 minutes long
     
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    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  7. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    I already tried making the mountain func_detail, and it didn't make any difference on the compile time. I'm don't remember for sure, but I think the roof is func_detail. I know for sure that the posts on the rail are func_detail, so they won't cut up the rail itself or the ramp. I also put a small strip of func_detail between the ramp and the walls to not cut up the walls. I also put the nodraw texture on hundreds of faces that the players can't see, which cut the compile time from about an hour and a half to about an hour.

    I will definately look at how to do displacements.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  8. REEJ

    REEJ L7: Fancy Member

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    your mountain is probably a displacement - it gets skipped by vvis as well, you need either a displacement or func_detail for complicated geometry
     
  9. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    Right now, the mountain is 5 stacked world brushes that I shaped with the clip tool and vertex manipulation, then letting Hammer correct the resulting invalid brushes. After reading that while func_detail brushes don't cut up world brushes, they do cut up each other, I tried making every other brush in the mountain func_detail, so none of them would cut up another, and it didn't help. Then, I tried making all 5 brushes func_detail, to no avail, so I just moved them all back to world.

    I am studying how to do displacements. I will delete the mountain and replace it with simpler brushes, which I will cover with displacements. The result should look more natural.
     
  10. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    Done! See the changelog and screen shot 5. It is not the best mountain you've ever seen, but it is definitely better than before.
     
  11. LeSwordfish

    aa LeSwordfish semi-trained quasi-professional

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    The second picture is much better.

    You've given me the best laugh i've had in weeks. Sorry, but ... lol.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2011
  12. ardysqrrl

    ardysqrrl L4: Comfortable Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    Just now, when I re-read the way I wrote that, I laughed, too. In my defense, the adjustments Hammer had to make were very small.
     
  14. Omena

    Omena L2: Junior Member

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    Reminds me of Inception. :D
     
  15. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    So, is there anything else I need to do to prepare koth_helix_b3 for playday? Is there any better place to host the file for somebody who cannot afford to pay for hosting?
     
  16. tyler

    aa tyler snail prince, master of a ruined tower

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    Use either this site's uploading feature or dropbox.
     
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  17. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    This site has an uploading feature? Cool!
     
  18. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    I have now released koth_helix_b3. To see how I made the great-looking cube maps, fly as a spectator straight up, way up. This might be a release candidate.
     
  19. Leminnes

    aa Leminnes

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    I took a look around. I have very little to say other than I think it's going to play very badly. I don't mean that maliciously, it's just there's only 2 paths from the spawn rooms to the cap and that's just.... bad. I just don't see it turning out well. It's also very small. Those doorways into the caps and spawn rooms are going to be camped a ton.
     
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    Last edited: Apr 10, 2011
  20. Empyre

    Empyre L6: Sharp Member

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    I appreciate constructive criticism, which is more useful than "This is great!". The two paths are from opposite directions, so no one player can cover both. The map is big enough that a scout can cap the point faster than a soldier can run there from spawn.

    With two opposite exits from spawn, spawn camping is less of a problem, and it is impossible to hurt an enemy player who is inside his spawn room, but I can easily move the barrier to the outside doorway, preventing enemies from even getting close.

    Meanwhile, I expect whole area around the cap point to be a battleground. I have only played this with at most three other players, so I don't know how it will play with more players. I hope to find out on Tuesday's gameday.

    My main concern is that it might be easy enough to push players off the ramp to their death below that it might break the gameplay. Maybe it would be worthwhile to enclose the gameplay area with Player Clip brushes.