Optipal House

Discussion in 'Map Factory' started by Draco18s, Sep 20, 2009.

  1. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    Yes, there's lots of dev orange around. But I want to get the map tested for balance and such prior to doing large amounts of texture work. Texturing is boring enough without having to do it twice. Also, sorry for the text dump, I guess I got carried away.

    The basis for the map came from an imaginary castle some guy drew up (I'd totally tell him, if his email was still valid) and initially was going to be a 3 round attack/defend map, but due to the limits on the number of CPs in a map (8), as well as the overall design of the castle it worked better as a 2 round attack/defend. I turned another one of his castles into a L4D map.

    I'd appreciate any play tests that get done. If you plan one and get several people I'd like to know about it so I can join in. I haven't been able to play my own map!

    Note that on round 1, a teleporter near blue spawn enables access to the back side of the map after point C is captured. It can be overlooked due to its location, but it's shorter than running all the way around in order to flank D.
    Also note that point B is optional in the first round (if the signage isn't clear--which it probably isn't for Red). Taking C makes it easier to take, and vice versa. Having both increases attack options on D.

    Map features a non-kill fall feature on round 2 that a friend of mine came up with (though I had to engineer myself!) where if you fall off the roof, you take some damage (a scout pushed back by a FaN probably won't survive), instead of instant death and then you then spend a few seconds out of game before being teleported back to your team's spawn. The idea is that it should be advantageous to push people off the edge, but with a lower penalty than being killed (5 seconds "time out" vs. 15 second respawn). Instant kill could be implemented easily, if that's what people decide works better; I just liked the uniqueness of the idea.

    Initial prognosis is that the second round will be more fun, so hopefully the first round will be a hard one for red to win. The first screenshot highlights the second round pretty well. Point A is in the lower right, just barely visible, B is to the left, again, barely visible, C is obscured by the dome, and D is inside the middle tower (the tall roof is a spiral stair, D is to the left of that). The second screenshot is from the opposite corner of the map, with point C visible.

    There is both breakable glass and unbreakable glass on the map, the unbreakable stuff is green and has security wires in it. The breakable glass has a moderate threshold for damage, so a pistol can't break it. Every class can break it, there are no weapon loadouts that leave a player incapable of damaging it (though there is an issue with the huntsman: arrows break when they hit breakable objects, nothing I can do about it).

    FYI: ignore any "spawn point is not clear" warnings, it has to do with the clip brush that prevents anyone from getting onto the roof (second round) during the first round. It was 10 times easier to make one large brush than it was to block out only the accessible sky.

    Things I particularly want to know:
    (Seriously, try and break the map, if there's anything that can make the game unfun, I want to know)
    Please, screenshots! It's really hard to know where something is without a screenshot, even I have a hard time describing locations and I know that round 1 point D is placed in the Kitchen! (I think I named the points based on the room they were in, but I don't think I went back and fixed those names when I moved them around--the names are meaningless enough that I kept forgetting to change it to ABCD).

    • Where to place/remove cover. It's pretty scarce right now, but may not be well placd.
    • Where to ban sentries/buildings (i.e. spots that make it impossible to counter)
    • Where to discourage snipers
    • Where I need signs (round 2 is not as well marked, but locations of trouble spots on either round would be helpful)
    • Spots where you can get into enemy zones (note: Red has total control of half of the second floor, on the D side of points A and B, Blue should not be able to get in there, likewise Red should not be able to get outside)*
    • Similarly, if you can access the ground and second floors during round 2*
    • Any way I can improve the health/ammo spawn placement. It's pretty evenly covered, I think, but if you find a place that think should use something, let me know!
    • Shadows! I know there aren't any lights yet, but if you think a particular location should be in shadow (good for spy decloaking) I'd like to know so I can take it into consideration when I muster the courage to add lights (my, that will take a while :eek: ).
    • Where I can get some flavor props! I really don't want to have to decompile existing maps to grab things out like crates and tires and things. Victorian themed anything would be awesome! There's nothing wrong with a clutter free map, of course, but it looks so sterile right now. x..x
    • And anything else you can think of!

    I threw a texture inside the map that has my email on it, but post to this thread, the email is there for players who want to report something, but don't know how.

    *Hopefully I've already covered these, but people have been known to be quite clever.

    ==Additional Screenshots==
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2009
  2. nik

    nik L12: Fabulous Member

    Messages:
    987
    Positive Ratings:
    283
    holy cow

    thats WAY more info then you ever see when someone releases a map on here

    my suggestion, fix the release type, people on here get all whiny about that, you would call this a first alpha, or an a1, and i'd take out the beta from the title.


    the map itself, looks really neat and well thought out. I like how you can go on the roofs and stuff.

    also, fix the skybox, use a tf2 one - here's the list: http://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Sky_list#team_fortress_2_materials.gcf
     
  3. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    I called it a beta, as my alpha versions weren't playable. Despite a good month of work, it's still pretty early (my current internal number is actually Beta 7).

    But I changed it, at least in the thread title. Changing the download URL and file name will take a bit more work. If someone wants to get bitchy, fine. My response is that the map is playable, therefore beta. A release client would be fully textured and pending final release.

    What can I say? I've got a lot of things to say about my map. People need to understand that I did some things the way I did them because I wanted to (second round falling), there are a few things to look out for (like the teleporter near C), and that it ain't gonna be textured much (there's some to help distinguish the floors, only because my friends and I would get lost).
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2009
  4. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

    Messages:
    1,591
    Positive Ratings:
    405
    Just quick-reactions to the pictures...

    Looks very big. You may want to take a stopwatch and compare how long it takes to get form A->B versus other maps. For extra testing, do it as a Heavy.

    Also, there may be optimization issues in the future--breaking the castle's roof area down into interior courtyards with high walls (which each have their own separate toolsskybox ceiling) may be worthwhile.
     
  5. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    We've done that, actually. It's really not that far. Badwater Basin is actually worse for a heavy (on blue side, with no working teleporters) than my map is.

    The worst route that I can think of that's still direct, is Round 1 blue spawn to D, if you don't take the map's teleporter and don't have B captured. The only way to be worse than that is to take a round-about way from 2nd round blue spawn and head down stairs a few times (all the way down to the third floor), but really you shouldn't need to be going that far out of your way as a Heavy, there are enough alternate routes as it is.
    The lower floors are accessible mainly for sneaking around, spies, scouts, and engineers.

    I'll dig up a few more screenshots, see if I can get some top-down layouts, and get some point-run times, but it only looks enormous, and most of that size is in height (and I wish it was taller, the original floorplans make it look positively dominating, albeit at roughly 1/4 the size you see it (which just doesn't give you maneuvering room)).

    Edit: here are some distance times
    For reference, it takes a heavy by himself 20 seconds to cap a point.

    Blue, round 1:
    Spawn -> A 16 seconds (this was from one of the farthest spawn locations)
    A -> B 11
    Spawn -> B 20
    B -> C 10
    A -> C 12 (assuming B uncaptured, as B opens another door that shaves several seconds)
    Spawn -> D 35 (longest interior route)
    Spawn -> D 25 (shortest interior route--B and C both captured)
    Spawn -> D 25 (using teleporter)
    Spawn -> D 42 (outside--outside routes let you access multiple entries through windows, but has a long travel time)
    C -> D 20 (short interior)

    C is literally right off the blue spawn room, if they have already captured B it should be a cakewalk (red can walk through the closed door into C, Blue can not until they take A, at which point the door opens. Taking B opens another door, I forget if A or B opens the gate that provides window access), so travel time from spawn is about 5 seconds, I didn't time it.

    Red is more centrally located than blue being between A and D and across from B. C is the longest travel, probably 20 seconds for a heavy.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2009
  6. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    Updated. Lots of screenshots.
     
  7. NovaSilisko

    aa NovaSilisko L42: Life, the Universe and Everything

    Messages:
    502
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    The fullbright really kills it for me.
     
  8. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    I haven't gotten around to doing lighting yet. Once you add one light you have to finish doing the lights, or unlit areas are drenched in pitch black darkness, which is even worse.

    In my list of priorities, lights are just after textures (get the textures I want, then light the scene).
     
  9. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

    Messages:
    1,591
    Positive Ratings:
    405
    I had some good experiences with just taking a single point-based "light" entity that casts a sourceless neutral white glow, and copy/pasting it (with the mouse over the floor in the 3d view) repeatedly in various indoor areas that didn't get enough natural light. Then you can use the Entity Report to select all of those entities and group them into a "Temporary Lighting" visgroup. When done, transform them all upwards by ~60 units. Viola! Low-effort indoor lighting.

    Then I can remove them one-by-one as I find time to do "real" lights.

    Another possibility, at the expense of deeper shadows, is to increase the ambient light level of your light_environment.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2009
  10. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    Ahoy! We've got lights now, as you requested. Took most of two days to do, and I'm not entirely satisfied, but it works.

    Instead of screenshots, I instead present you with:

    The Evolution of Lighting
    (In four parts*)

    Part 1
    Part 2
    Part 3
    Part 4

    *I found point_devshot_camera and made four animated gifs from the results (29 captures per camera before trimming), they're about 1-2 MB each from four of my 12 (usable) cameras. Cameras in order are #01, #02, #03, and #11
     
  11. Draco18s

    Draco18s L9: Fashionable Member

    Messages:
    622
    Positive Ratings:
    136
    Bump.

    Informing TF2 Maps that a play test will be running tomorrow (Thursday) at 7pm to 9pm EST. There will be two servers up, due to the anticipated volume of volunteers.

    If you are interested, message me on steam (Draco18s) for server information--if you're located in Canada let me know, you'll likely have a better ping to that server.