PL Moondust b4

Made by Random Chaos

  1. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Hello!

    July and Beta 4.1 is released. Very minor gameplay updates to Beta 4.

    Going to put this in a Saturday test soon so I can get feedback again.

    Enjoy, and look forward to feedback!



    Original post follows, dated 02-Jan-2015:
    - - - - - -
    Hello!

    I am new to TF2 mapping, started about 3 weeks ago, played around with an early map idea for a week, then spent the last two weeks on this map

    PL Moondust, aka Cave Johnson’s Moondust Mine​

    The theme: Cave Johnson established a moondust mine and surrounding town during his running of Aperture Labs before it was abandoned. Following the launch of several rocket ships by the MANN company, Red found and took over the remains of this mine. Now Blu is assaulting the mine and attempting to destroy the Red rockets trying to return home with Moondust.

    - - - - - - - -

    Enjoy the map! Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?

    Enjoy!
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2015
  2. Kill_the_Bug

    Kill_the_Bug L14: Epic Member

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    Nice to see someone else doing a space themed payload - and I like what I see so far!
     
  3. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    The biggest problem has been the very big lack of space-themed props that Valve has included. I looked around an older version of rd_asteroid (unfortunately the newest version doesn't decompile correctly yet), but the bulk of the props are unfinished.

    I'm hoping the decompiler gets updated to handle the new shader settings that Valve added for rd_asteroid soon so I can grab some (hopefully) props or prefabs!

    Edit:

    OOH - bspsrc 1.3.18 is out on the github download page. He forgot to post it on his homepage, which is why I missed it.

    And there be new props!!!!!
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2015
  4. radarhead

    aa radarhead Hands out ratings like cheap cigars

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    You don't need to decompile the map to get the props, just go to props_moonbase.
     
  5. Muddy

    Server Staff Muddy Muddy

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    For someone who's only been using Hammer for three weeks, this is looking really good! I might have a run-around in it when I get the time.

    I will say though, the "global shipping dept" sign from Decoy (second screenshot) looks really out of place.
     
  6. HQDefault

    HQDefault L12: Fabulous Member

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    I didn't know Aperture Science collaborated with Mann Co. But for some reason, it makes some sort of weird crazy sense. Because this would be about the time the company became really invested in science.
     
  7. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    I thought throwing in Aperture Science added an interesting twist :) - and a reason for a mine on the moon :)

    As for mapping, the main reason I haven't done mapping for TF2 before is I run on a Mac, and Hammer is only for Windows. Thus I had to buy Windows for my virtual machine to be able to use Hammer (mostly I run Linux in VMWare). I did collaborate with some mapping back for TFC (circa 2001) and a modified Hunted level, but I didn't do the actual mapping then, just the map design and game balancing.
     
  8. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Updated to Alpha 40. Ton of changes, including a few gameplay wise. Changelog added to the first post. Enjoy everyone!
     
  9. radarhead

    aa radarhead Hands out ratings like cheap cigars

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    40? Man that is HUGE. Are you counting every time you save as an alpha or something?
     
  10. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Nope, I name a new alpha whenever I start a new major component on the map. Alpha 1, back when I started it was, level design and layout with just big blocks. Alpha 2 added the cavern at the start. The next several alphas moved into the building just prior to the first cap zone and the first area with the greenhouse and helix. You get the idea. I didn't really keep track of specific changes for most of them since they were just for me. The last 3 alphas I detailed my changes, and as you can see they are fairly extensive. I feel I am getting close to the first beta and my rate of alpha releases are slowing coincident to less major changes being done, probably another 1-2 weeks of work before I put out the first beta, and then the numbers will be much slower to rise (maybe one every couple weeks as I fix bugs).

    Over the holidays when I was on vacation I was putting in 12-16 hour days on the map (probably hit close to 150 hours in just over a week), sometimes with more than one major component a day. Now that I am back at work, I am down to a more reasonable 2-4 hours a day most days (though I spent about 8 hours on it today, much of it fixing bugs).

    Some things I still want to do include custom textures for overlay signs on some of the buildings. That is going to take some time since I need to learn how to do that still :) - some of the names I am using (Pinkerpan Packing, Global Shipping Dept., etc.) are stock Valve signs that I definitely want to replace with my own labels.
     
  11. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    I've just released Beta 1. I had the opportunity to get this play tested on No Heroes' Friday Night Double Feature, where I got some invaluable feedback.

    The first double feature was in mid January. From this feedback, I ended up completely redesigning the opening to the map: more exits from the cave, much bigger initial room. The largest complaint was too easy to camp and prevent Blue from ever pushing.

    The second double feature, a week ago, resulted in only minor changes with overall very positive feedback, the biggest three involved optimization, too few exits from the Blue ship at the start, and players getting confused as to where to go. To resolve the latter two of these I rotated the ship a bit, added a third exit, and added more direction arrows in several locations. The first one was because the map was badly in need of another optimization pass, which is the bulk of the noticeable change between the version tested and the version released today.

    This map should be bug free and ready for a wider audience. I want feedback, and I'd love to get it from people beyond the mapping community.

    As for optimization, I'm still having some issues with the frame rates in the big, open spaces. They are not as high as I would like, but I've run out of ideas on how to increase them (other than creating a tall viewblock that would cull geometry). Any ideas would be welcome.

    Enjoy the map, and I look forward to your feedback. I'm going to start working on my next Payload map now, planned at this time to be an Egyptian-themed map with at least one waterfall.
     
  12. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Hello again. June.

    I have released Beta 4, having skipped larger public releases of Betas 2 and 3 after testing them at the No Heroes double feature event.

    Biggest headline: Frame rates are WAY improved around CP3. Found the issue causing absurdly low frame rates, and eliminated it.

    I am hoping to test this soon at another No Heroes double feature and will probably be looking for a TF2Maps test in the near future. I look forward to everyone's feedback.



    Here is a brief synopsis of the major changes:

    For Beta 2 (March):
    • I shortened the track a lot, especially for CP2 and CP4.
    • Added another blue spawn point.
    • Focused on optimization

    For Beta 3 (April):
    • Flanking tunnels from CP1 to CP2
    • Fixed a whole lot of minor albeit long standing issues

    For Beta 4 (June):
    • Huge focus on optimization
    • Huge focus on better signage for players
    • Fixed a ton of mostly minor issues, such as texture alignment
    • Added additional flanking routes at CP3 and CP5
     
  13. Kill_the_Bug

    Kill_the_Bug L14: Epic Member

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    Hey RC - you know you can also ask for them to be also tested here right? Look for 'server events' you can get valuable feed back as well :) but this feedback is from mappers who know what they're talking about in terms of mapping/game logic/entity coding/behind the scenes functionality, etc.
     
  14. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Yep - planning to!
     
  15. Random Chaos

    Random Chaos L1: Registered

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    Posted Beta 4.1. Very minor changes. Finally have time for a Saturday test this weekend, so I'm going for it!

    Gameplay:
    - Adjusted timers, reduced total time to final CP by 1.5 minutes
    - Fixed missing respawn room region near CP3 lower blue exit
    - Made window at CP2 blue spawn more obvious that it is a window

    Other:
    - Fixed several texture alignment issues
    - Resurrected accidentally removed floating rocks near bridge