Tips for a rookie detailer?

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by HQDefault, Sep 15, 2014.

  1. HQDefault

    aa HQDefault ...what

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    So, recently, I uploaded the seventh alpha of my map, hangar, which had some small bits of detailing for the first time C: However, I'm not entirely sure that when I start detailing the outside, my skills will be sufficient. The thread has an image of my detailing work so far: http://forums.tf2maps.net/showthread.php?t=23196

    If there's any tips anyone has to help me in the long run, that would be fantastic ;)
     
  2. Faux Rhinoceros

    aa Faux Rhinoceros Also known as Dr. Element

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    Make it not-stressful to look at. Lead people to important areas with your details (zinkenite is a good example of a map that has a landmark at every control point.) And make it so it makes sense.

    Currently, your map is very stressful to look at because of the rock texture. Not only does it have high contrast, it also forms a pattern that is easily recognized, and this pattern is spammed all over your walls. You also have the hangar buried inside solid rock, which makes no sense at all. Fixing those two issues would make a fair starting point.
     
  3. HQDefault

    aa HQDefault ...what

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    That's great to know :) However, I also was wondering if you had an opinion on my work with the one room so far.

    EDIT: BTW, your forgetting this is the Team Fortress 2 universe. A world with killstreak fishes. It doesn't have to make sense.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2014
  4. nightwatch

    aa nightwatch

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    You have barrels strapped to a random section of floor.
     
  5. Crash

    aa Crash func_nerd

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    Study Valve detailing. Go look at 2fort. That map is a detailing masterpiece.
     
  6. wareya

    wareya L7: Fancy Member

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    Copy valve maps.
     
  7. ok comp

    ok comp L2: Junior Member

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    With props, I always try to stick to the idea of organic prop placement. Use your judgment: anything that would be bolted down is probably safe to set at 90 degree angles, but anything else is safe to toss about. Barrels, crates, wood piles, mops and buckets... these are safe to put at odd angles and often more natural this way.

    Repetition should be avoided, unless there is a good reason. The racks of tape prop you've used in that room is a great example: there are a few spytech rooms in some Valve maps that are viewed through a window where rows of desks and tape extend beyond sight, giving the impression of this expansive, possibly endless room! It's an amusing touch that fits in with the intentionally over-the-top spytech theme. In most other instances, repetition can come across as lazy or boring for the player. When you see a lot of the same prop in the same place in the same orientation, it suddenly begins to feel fake and can kill immersion.

    I'm not going to pick on those racks because it's feasible that several racks can be lined up like that. However, the ceiling lamps are what I feel could use a change. In this instance you can probably get away with fewer of them.

    Props are the easiest and quickest way to add complex detail to your map, but props alone cannot float the boat. Detail brushwork, texture variation and lighting are critical and just as important to pay attention to.

    Sorry that my advice is all over the place. The others are right though: study Valve's maps and ask yourself why certain things feel right. Take screenshots of things you like and refer to them when designing. If you're making a spytech themed room, study their spytech rooms. You'll start to pick up on some common themes and techniques used to illustrate those themes.
     
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  8. DonutVikingChap

    DonutVikingChap L5: Dapper Member

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    Rule #101 of detailing:
    If all else fails, spam every corner with some good ol' crates and barrels
     
  9. HQDefault

    aa HQDefault ...what

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    That's pretty much what I did in the room right below it :blush:
     
  10. shadowslasher11

    aa shadowslasher11

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    Rule #102 of detailing: If you get tired of spamming corners with crates and barrels, make slanted corners everywhere!
     
  11. Dain

    Dain L3: Member

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  12. Faux Rhinoceros

    aa Faux Rhinoceros Also known as Dr. Element

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    Yes it does. It doesn't have to be realistic, it just shouldn't break the immersion.

    Immersion is a funny thing to work with. For example, it'd be more "believable" in a game environment that a map was situated on the surface of Io, than if it took place in a stone castle that stood on wooden pillars with a doughnut store as neighbor.
     
  13. Idolon

    aa Idolon the worst admin

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    I look at detailing the same way I do layouts - your first attempts are gonna be crap. Make some detail scenes with no regard to layout or playability, and you should build some basic understanding of how to make things look nice.
     
  14. HQDefault

    aa HQDefault ...what

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    OK, I understand what you're trying to say, but let me argue my scenario for a second: Given RED's interesting construction locations, as well as Redmond's total disregard for any thought what so ever. Is there any reason that in the Team Fortress 2 universe, that RED wouldn't hide their hangar in a secret base with a secret hangar up atop a secret mountain, carved into a secret cliff side? Also, you're more concerned about a hangar inside of a mountain than a runway that's 25 feet long and runs off a 500 ft cliff.
     
  15. Faux Rhinoceros

    aa Faux Rhinoceros Also known as Dr. Element

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    I can't even see the runway on the screenshots. But since we're on that subject, you could make such a runway seem more realistic if it was broken off at the end, and put the broken pieces of the collapsed runway down below somewhere. You can always make something questionable more believable somehow.

    As for the cliffs, i still think they are way too noisy. Use a plainer rock texture for it, so that players will be able to focus on more important detailing better.

    On the topic of the carved out hangar, it could definitely work. You just have to make it look like it was actually carved in.
     
  16. Kill_the_Bug

    Kill_the_Bug L14: Epic Member

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    Rule # 103 - when all else fails - place in and few Cargo containers - the more the better!

    Rule # 104 - you can never have enough cows in it either - I can't remember the name of it but we did have one stellar example of a cow map on here - there were cows EVERYWHERE!
     
  17. Faux Rhinoceros

    aa Faux Rhinoceros Also known as Dr. Element

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    Normally, i'd disagree with the cows. We are, however, in the middle of an alien themed contest. I myself have placed a cow in the 3d skybox of my map to act as a lure for the alien mothership
     
  18. Kill_the_Bug

    Kill_the_Bug L14: Epic Member

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    ROFL :lol:
     
  19. wareya

    wareya L7: Fancy Member

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