Map project: Koth_Dam

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by MrCasual, Nov 14, 2010.

  1. MrCasual

    MrCasual L1: Registered

    Positive Ratings:
    Hello all. I've got a LITTLE experience in Hammer, and I'm able to do some of the things like making custom stairs and stuff, even though its mega time consuming, but I thought it would be best to post my idea here for guidance.

    My map idea: A giant Dam, set in Siberia. The map doesn't make much sense for a giant dam, but it has evolved over the months I've pondered its construction. About all I know is, it will have lots of water in it.

    I always wanted to make my own TF2 map, and I guess KOTH would be the best place to start.

    Here's a quickly drawn paint of my map idea.


    I think I can make the concrete structure easily enough, but a few things keep bugging me.

    1. Scale - I've got a gameplay mechanic on the map that works well with FAN Scouts and Pyros. On one side of the Dam, getting blown off will give you an environmental death. Getting blown on the other side will land you in water, and since it will be in Siberia, I think it would be realistic if you took serious damage while swimming. Like 10 hp+ a second, and you can avoid death by swimming to a lower level garage type area in one of the buildings. I plan on putting a large health pack in there (100) just for convenience. So when I mention scale, I think for it to be realistic to blast people off, the point and dome-like structure (Thats another thing I'll get to later), it would have to be like 2-3 roads wide at the most. Whats the best way to measure this without compiling the map each time until its perfect?

    2. - Underground passageways. I love the idea of underground passageways. I made some earlier in hammer by hollowing out a torus and manipulating the pieces to give the impression of it being a hollowed out "Pipe", which I plan on using for great ambush areas for Pyros. I was thinking of putting 2-4 underground "pipes" that lead directly into the point, only really useful for Pyros or ballsy Spies. But...whats the best way to "mine" through solid concrete in hammer to make this possible? Am I going about it the totally wrong way? The last time I actually made an underground passageway it had so many gaps that I had to patch up it wasn't even funny, and it didn't even look that great. Maybe I'm just being too ambitious or perfectionist with some of my ideas?

    And the last thing:

    3 - Making a decent looking, yet, somewhat original structure to house the control point? I was thinking something similar to a dome, but making Domes in hammer has them look pretty blocky. I don't know anything about 3d modeling programs, otherwise I'd make my own to put into the map. Plus, I never could find a good texture. I wanted like a white, pure, mettalic texture. I guess I'd be better off using a prefab or something.

    As for balance issues, I guess I'll come across them as the map progresses. I know that it looks like a horrible sniper map like 2fort on top of the second set of buildings, but I plan on putting up some things to keep the snipers at bay. Perhaps instead of the Dome I mentioned on 3, maybe some kind of building with patches and holes in it similar to the one on KOTH_harvest, but with a concrete Gorge theme.

    Comments? Suggestions? Also, thanks for reading this thread and bearing with a total newbie.:blushing:

    EDIT: Actually, now that I think about it, I think some of my problems could be solved just by making the structure covering the point a tall-ish block that obscures sniper view on both sides, so they won't become a nuisance, and possibly have the entrances to the building be on areas where Pyros and FAN scouts can easily knock enemies coming into the building into the water or off the ledge.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2010
  2. red_flame586

    red_flame586 L7: Fancy Member

    Positive Ratings:
    1 - I'm guessing you want it to be some huge dam, not just some little pansy thing that stops a small river, in that case, it needs to be pretty wide and quite long, also, how koth maps work is that unlike most other game styles, they are relitivly circular in game play (there is a pic of how this works somewhere but I can't find it.) Anyway, back on topic, you'll want it quite big so if you really want people to be blown of the edge either put it closer to the edge or maybe make an indent in the side of the map (maybe the cause of an earlier explosion/the dam's future demise). Also, the dome of the point doesn't look like it would fit the style, maybe just add another building in the centre, perhaps like this:
    and put it in that (just make sure it's readily accessible from multiple entrances

    2- What you could do is make the dam hollow, not a single large brush. This would mean that you could create a pipe going though it easier

    3- see point 1, if it's hanging precariously off the side of the dam, perhaps with some scaffolding going around the side of it, it'll look pretty cool, especially as you're falling off it...

    Three other things, you don't want to make blast back classes to op or it'll ruin the gameplay, if you're going of that sketch, you'll need to add a lot more cover, and dam is a rather unoriginal name, i've seen it plenty of times, you probably should think of something a bit more original...

    EDIT: also, large spanses of water in TF2 don't look that good, especially when seen from hight so take that into consideration
  3. Seba

    aa Seba DR. BIG FUCKER, PHD

    Positive Ratings:
    1) A simple way to measure scale is to add props whose size you know well (like player models) or simply measuring existing areas from the Valve maps provided and adjusting your areas to be a proper size. I think that getting back onto the dam via a garage thing is a good idea, but inflicting serious damage on players via water sounds like a bad feature, imo. Try to find another way to limit the player from going too far out.

    2) First things first: do not use toruses, and especially don't hollow them out. If you need a smooth round structure, use displacements. Make a long rectangular tube then cut it into three pieces. Subdivide the 12 inside faces and remove the ends to get a nice, round pipe. And when making the dam itself, start by creating gameplay areas (tunnels, bases, etc) first, then cover up everything that you want with a big brush.

    3) Try to avoid making a simple building as your capture zone. Small buildings are usually boring, plus your map will be very flat if you just make it look like a typical dam; these two add up to very boring gameplay. Experiment with putting the point below the surface with a large complex above it? Maybe make the top middle of the dam inaccessible to players, so they're forced to change altitude? Try out different things and see which one plays the best/you like the most.

    Also, very important: Source does not like water on two different levels in the same map. This means that if you place water on the bottom of the dam and water at the top, one of them is bound to not render properly and generally look bad. Oh, and remember to scale your water texture 1x1.

    Good luck!
  4. Cerious

    Cerious L7: Fancy Member

    Positive Ratings:
  5. Fr0Z3nR

    aa Fr0Z3nR Creator of blackholes & memes. Destroyer of forums

    Positive Ratings:
    Could you do one water in Skybox, the other not? would that work?

    One would needed to be scaled down to 1/16th...
  6. Wolfdale22

    Wolfdale22 L1: Registered

    Positive Ratings:

    My improvements to your idea.

    The "boat-rooms" lead out into the frozen lake behind the damn, and connect to a path of broken sheets of ice leading to the enemy "boat-room" and the control point. The pieces of ice could overlap each over, leading to a smoother path (no jumping from bit to bit). You could also use non-accessible ice blocks to break up tf2s crappy looking water.

    Below the CP is a small generator room with walkways etc, which lead up to the CP and serve as a hub for your pipes. I would also suggest you turn the dome into a relatively open small building. This would allow you to add one or two spaces of vertical height above the CP.

    As for the direct route: each side should have a elevated point on their buildings next to spawn. This should provide snipers with a limited field of vision - not a clear view of the exposed ice path. Also, various cover etc on the direct path; this breaks up sight to the ice path, and from the sniper positions.

    I'm only a regular tf2 player - not an avid mapper, and can barely use Hammer so I don't know how hard this would be to create.
  7. Tapp

    Tapp L10: Glamorous Member

    Positive Ratings:
    I like the fact that you're going for something really interesting for you map, but there are a few problems I think you'll run in to. First, there is a large demographic of players who despise environmental deaths to the utmost. Make the dam wider than what you're planning, and make falling into the water something that can be avoided easily. Put a few sporadic fences of the sides, and use plenty of routes that don't go near the sides of the dam. If a player repeatedly dies to the same hazard, or if they die without being pushed into it, they get angry. Secondly, the gameplay is going to be really linear. As said above, add some scaffolding to the sides, and provide plenty of lateral space. Make the dam unrealistically wide, and just allow players to overtake each other without being within a few metres of each other. Finally, I'd like to give you some artref from one of my old projects, because seeing someone else's failed attempt at the same theme is always really helpful. (ignore the derpy water)