• Center Save Changes Reset

KotH Spring B1 2016-04-04

A KOTH map set in a mountain valley

  1. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    Spring B1 - A KOTH map set in a mountain valley

    Battle for control of a bridge that crosses a fast-flowing river. Admire the views but try not to get washed downstream!

    This is my first TF2 map. So far it is fairly well detailed and optimized but has not been tested for gameplay. I have had a lot of fun making this, hopefully it is fun to play too.

    The layout is fairly simple and I think it is slightly bigger than most KOTH maps, but hopefully not too oversized for gameplay. I have kept the default spawn and capture times that come with the ABS prefabs, I'm not sure if these need changed.

    Thanks to everyone who contributes on this excellent forum, it is a fantastic resource. Thanks especially to Boojum for the prefab packs which are incredibly useful and easy to use.


    To-do list for future versions:

    - Fix the badly lit props
    - Increase some displacement powers so they look nicer
    - Increase lightmap sizes on textures that need the attention
    - Add more minor details like wires
    - Figure out the batch compiler for a nicer finish
    - Fix some props that are fading out too close to the player
    - Add soundscapes (just saw the awesome tutorial post)

    -Make the spawn windows 1-way glass to stop players peaking in

    - Maybe increase lighting in the darker areas
    - Maybe add more health and ammo packs if they are needed

    Thanks for checking out my map I hope you enjoy it!
     
    • Like Like x 2
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2016
  2. Popo

    Popo L1: Registered

    Messages:
    43
    Positive Ratings:
    29
    This looks frankly gorgeous. I'm a little scared for you though, especially as you say you haven't tested it yet. I'm a little skeptical about using the fence prop as part of your floor in screenshot 8, but we'll see what the others say.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  3. Muddy

    Server Staff Muddy Muddy

    Messages:
    2,372
    Positive Ratings:
    4,167
    Yeah, a good tip is to leave the detailing until you've done playtesting and you know you won't have to make any more major layout changes. There's nothing worse than having to tear out a huge chunk of beautiful detail work you've slaved away on for days because the area plays like absolute arse.

    (Except child leukaemia, I suppose.)
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    Thanks guys I know the best idea is to put out a simple layout for testing but frankly i cant help myself trying to make things look pretty, it's just too easy with the source engine. Most of the heavy lifting is done by prop spam and 3D skybox so please don't be shy to criticize if you think the layout sucks.

    To be honest I've only been into TF2 for a few months (but I am a TFC relic) so I havent even worked out what makes a map good. You have to make bad maps before you can make good maps so hopefully I have at least made something simple that is not painful to play.

    I have put thought into the layout and tried to design it so if it doesnt work it can be easily changed, for example there are two main routes to concentrate the gameplay to the middle, but a third route can easily be added by removing a wall without compromosing optimization. The main route might be a bit sparse but theres plenty of room to redesign or add cover. I originally wanted the cap point on a platform that you can jump onto from the bridge, or putting it down in the water might be the best place for it.

    It might even be a better design for a 3 or 5 point map instead of KOTH, which is easily done. I even thought of cutting out the mirror and making it the first stage of a payload map since thats my favorite game mode at the moment. But when i started thinking how the cable cars can be implemented into the map I slapped myself and decided to keep it as simple as I can. Thoughts and feedback much appreciated!
     
  5. sooshey

    aa sooshey :3c

    Messages:
    522
    Positive Ratings:
    418
    Let me preface this by saying your detailing absolutely beautiful. Props (lol puns) to you!
    There are a few things I suggest:
    • Right now I can't see a use for that asphalt patio looking thing right outside spawn. Maybe you could turn that cable car house into another flank?
    • The point area feels really small and it certainly doesn't help that there are huge shipping containers taking up most of the bridge space. It might be better to make the bridge wider and use a different, smaller prop as cover.
    • I personally think the height difference from the bridge to the river below is too large, and getting back up to the point leaves you too vulnerable.
    • None of your indoor stairs are clipped, but that's an easy fix! I see the small stairs right near the point are clipped with playerclip, but blockbullets is better because it doesn't mess with explosion radii. Also make sure the clip "ramp" goes all the way to the floor, not just stop at the bottom step.
    • A lot of your props disappear while you're still way too close to them. For example, in the room with the fence props in the floor, you can't see the staircase or the generators until you enter the room.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  6. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50

    -You're absolutely right there is no point to that "car park" or any of that area beside the spawn other than i felt like making some useless cable cars and a place for curious explorers to fall to their doom. I am still in two minds about putting a route in that way, as you can see in the overview picture its just a short corridor away from coming out beside the river. It probably won't be a useful route unless I move the cap point further south, either on a platform below the bridge or in the river. Otherwise that route might be a little too slow unless more things are moved around. But then that brings me back to wanting to put working cable cars in the cable car house and I have to slap myself again.

    -One side of the cap point area is more exposed and one side has the crates, I was hoping to get a balance there but I guess it has to be played to work out, its small but then if you can't take the heat you can always take a bath! I think the only reason I used the big prop container instead of the half sized chunky one was that the small one didnt come with a blue skin only red (ie laziness), but if it is taking too much space I could just change it for a smaller cluster of crates or something else. I could definitely widen the bridge, maybe make the bottom route run straight onto it instead of kind of going around and then up, maybe think of an altogether different way to have cover on the bridge to break up the sight lines.

    -Put the huge bridge height down to laziness again, I was going to shorten it but wanted to make the most of the tall waterfall prop. Also it kind of just looks cool to have a massive view over the valley. Maybe I should cut the whole thing down, make a custom waterfall that fits better, maybe a wide shallow one instead of a tall thin one. Again its about how it plays, maybe its good to have it that tall because if you want to take the bath you have to expose yourself to get back up, I think its more fun to knock someone off into the water even if you dont kill them, knowing they have to haul it all the way back up?

    -Ah thanks for the tip about the block bullet clips, I didn't know that was a thing. I did clip off all the wall edges and most of the props I think, I will do the same for the stairs.

    - Prop fade outs are on the to-do list thanks. I thought I fixed them but then unfixed them somehow, I think most of them are just cosmetic things so I didnt bother fixing before this upload, hopefully it's not too annoying but it's defeinitely annoying.

    Thanks for the feedback it is much appreciated. Everything still needs tested but I could definitely end up implementing everything you just suggested, thanks a lot!
     
  7. Zed

    aa Zed Certified Most Crunk™

    Messages:
    1,235
    Positive Ratings:
    994
    If you don't want to get rid of the height on the bridge, you could always turn the area way below into a deathpit and add bridge to the lower area.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  8. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    So I can be lazy with the watefall prop AND have more scary death pits? I love it.

    By the way did I do something wrong with the thread to not get a thumbnail pick on the new posts page? Do I have to upload a smaller image or something?
     
  9. zahndah

    aa zahndah professional letter

    Messages:
    715
    Positive Ratings:
    618
    You should get this tested in an impromptu testing session (imp) or a gameday.

    To get it tested in an imp, join the steam group chat (there is a link to it on the right side of the homepage) and add your map to the bot using the following command '!add [filename of map] [download URL for map].

    Alternatively, you can get your map tested in a scheduled gameday. To get it tested in one of these you just need to check the 'server events' subforum ( http://tf2maps.net/forums/server-events.35/ ) for a thread for a gameday that hasnt happened yet (the date is in the title of the thread) and then use the provided template to submit your map that way.

    Its way better to get gameplay feedback via a testing session than playing with bots or just lone people telling you impressions, as this is a real game of tf2.

    BTW map looks fantastic, hope it plays well!
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  10. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    Thanks a lot that's really helpful, I got it added to the server in the chat, hopefully I can get it running at some point :)
     
  11. RataDeOrdenador

    RataDeOrdenador L5: Dapper Member

    Messages:
    235
    Positive Ratings:
    102
    Oh yes. This map right now looks absolutely beautiful. Mid point looks pretty "small",yeah,but we'll see how it goes when we play it.

    I tried playing with some classes,and I noticed the truck inside the tunnel (right before the point) COULD BE,PERHAPS,MAYBE,a somewhat strong sentry nest? You can just build a sentry on top of the truck,the dispenser behind it,and done. You're vulnerable from behind (going ALL the way to the enemy team's spawn and using the tunnel)... Yet again,WHO KNOWS? It might be a crappy sentry nest.

    One thing I noticed is that the map is symmetrical. Very symmetrical. EXTREMELY symmetrical.

    It's not a bad thing,of course. Symmetrical maps are always awesome,and nice,and yabadi yabada. (Like Process,Badlands,5Gorge,etc...)

    But I dunno: Both spawn rooms are EXACTLY the same,the mountains,trees,and even the HOUSES on the background are exactly the same. And again: It's not a bad thing. Symmetrical maps are cool. But maybe AT LEAST change a liiiiiitle bit one of the spawn rooms? Make the house a little bit different,I dunno. It's not bad if the spawn is some sort of intel (Nucleus,Process),but I don't think both teams made the EXACT same house with the EXACT same details... right? >->'

    The background should be different,of course. Both teams having the same white house on the background,the same trees,and the same mountains. Even the enclosed areas with all those chairs,and cups,and STUFF. Make them a liiiiitle bit different. It should make the map look more AWESOME. o3o

    Oh,and before I stop saying stupid stuff: The pipes on the tunnel (specially the ones where the HEALTH is) looks pretty cramped. You can probably try and go for the health,get it,and get stuck between those pipes long enough for the enemy to kill you. Simply make more room. It will save a ton of lifes. ;D

    And yes... that's it. I'm not the best in the entire universe,BUT HEY! who cares? ;>
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  12. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    What do you mean there are no differences the blue side has a.. piano! And errr.... Yeah. I can definitely make more cosmetic changes on either side once the layout has been confirmed as final, I just didnt want to run into copy and pasting headaches later if I had to make a bunch of layout changes.

    Yeah you are right about the truck being a good point for sentries, it would be a good way for a team to lock down their side of the tunnel but it wouldn;t be able to actually see onto the point so maybe that makes it alright? I think the best way to clear that would be from the small doorway in the tunnel but that is so exposed to the main route from spawn it would be really difficult to kill the sentry. Maybe opening that doorway or adding cover to protect people attacking the truck sentry would be a solution? THe only other thing I can think would be an easy fix is putting a gap in the top of the half-closed door so it can be spammed over, but that might make it too easy to spam the main route from the point.

    Yeah I think I need to take a closer look at the concrete pipes clipping too, I was worried they might be a little sticky and with those things its sort of hard for the player to know what they can stand on / jump up to / walk on / build on so maybe I should just replace them with something simpler like more boxes.

    Thanks a lot for taking a look at my map and commenting!
     
  13. zahndah

    aa zahndah professional letter

    Messages:
    715
    Positive Ratings:
    618
    Instead of changing the pipes out due to awkward clipping, you could make them nonsolid and make the clipping how you want it with a brush textured with 'blockbullets'.
     
  14. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    Yeah I just don't like them because even if they are clipped properly its still unintuitive to the player. You can look at a box and tell straight away what you can get on it, with those pipes you just have to trial and error and remember for next time.
     
  15. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    One quick question I just thought of: there is a balcony above each spawn point that you cant reach with standard classes but they can be built on. So an engineer can build a teleporter that is protected from spies (a spy can oly bring it down by shooting the revolver while hopping up and down on the wall beside it but can't directly access it).

    Is this a bad thing because I kind of think it is? I don't want to allow easy access to encourage messing around at the spawn door, should I just nobuild there and force the engineer to make teleorters where a spy can get in it, or just leave it as it is now?
     
  16. RataDeOrdenador

    RataDeOrdenador L5: Dapper Member

    Messages:
    235
    Positive Ratings:
    102
    You either make a nobuild on the balcony,or some "improvised" stairs to reach there. Barnblitz has a really "strange" set or stairs to reach the upper blu spawn,as shown here:

    [​IMG]

    You could try and do something like that... Or just nobuild. Your choice.
     
  17. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    Yeah I know about that thing on barnblitz but I really don't think I like it, really not a fan of anything that encourages messing around at the spawn doors. If a spy can hop up there so can a pocket heavy and I would rather not have that as a thing.

    I was just wondering what others thought about that part of spawn design, I think the right thing is probably just to nobuild it though.
     
  18. zahndah

    aa zahndah professional letter

    Messages:
    715
    Positive Ratings:
    618
    Sure, a pocket heavy can hop up there, but there is a second exit to sneak out of, and the heavy has 0 room to move, so can just be airblasted off easily. Also there isnt health up there so when the medic dies the heavy is kind of screwed.

    However barnblitz is payload and in payload you are more often just throwing yourself at the enemy team than you are in koth (probably) so maybe the circumstances are different. Would be best probably to see how it works out in-game then decide from that.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  19. Skullio

    Skullio L1: Registered

    Messages:
    49
    Positive Ratings:
    50
    So this was on the server earlier and a bunch of people got to (had to?) play it and I got the demo, and man its a lot of fun for me to watch. I didnt even realise the demo would have full functions like recording all the chat AND voice comms and letting you watch from every single players view and wind it back and forwards, this is so awesome and helpful and very fun.

    Thanks to everyone who played and left comments because so much of it is useful I appreciate everything from the most critical ("this needs to be torn apart and started over!") to the most flattering ("I need to hire this guy to make displacements for me!") haha thanks guys.

    The layout is the biggest problem as I expected, mainly the fact that the bridge is too small and claustrophobic for good gameplay. Theres a couple of ways to try to fix this, I could widen the bridge and modify the stuff on it, or I could move the cap point altogether onto a platform below the bridge, or actually in the water. I am still really not sure about this so if anyone has any opinions on the best way to fix this major layout problem I would love to hear it.

    The second biggest problem is people dicking around beside the spawn, and the useless scenic area generally being a big distraction. I'm not convinced that this is a problem because I don't mind new players exploring before they play, and then when they are done looking around they understand that the area is just cosmetic and the big arrows will take them directly to the gameplay. I don't think it takes players long to understand that to get to the point all you have to do is spawn and walk forwards, then choose high door or low door. I could just put up big ugly fences to make it clear to players that you can't go that way and funnel them, but that would spoil the lovely views! I think different people are going to think about this differently but I would love to know what you guys think, I will definitely try to make it clearer that the are is just cosmetic while still retaining the feel of an open environment for the next version.

    I was also considering adding a third route, though no one seemed to suggest this in the game or mention thetwo routes being a problem, just tha the cap area itself needed changed, so I might hold off on this change for now but remember that I can still turn the disused cablecar building into a route to the middle very easily.

    These are the fundamental things I need to think about for the next update but I have also taken on board all the other comments that will see lots of fixes (more clipping, more health kits, more lighting, less props fading, bigger spawn doors, a better balcony) in the next version.

    I will wait until after tommorows gameday if it gets played again before I commit to the major design changes that the map needs, Im pretty excited for the next version playing a lot better while still having the aesthetic that you guys seem to be digging. Please leave feedback if you have it and please don't hold back if you have criticism. Thanks for all your help!
     
  20. Jekyllson

    Jekyllson L3: Member

    Messages:
    115
    Positive Ratings:
    60
    When the map 2Fort Invasion came out, I spent about 30 minutes running around just taking in the utterly incredible atmosphere. I did the same with Sulfur after Freyja gave it its first artpass. I still enjoy the look of these maps, but after playing on them for a game or two, I no longer got distracted by their beauty. If you think that the "useless scenic area" is distracting testers from focusing on gameplay, then by all means board it up temporarily with an ugly wall, but for the final version, I'd say make the map as distractingly gorgeous as you like :)