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Why does valve make their maps wrap?

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by bob+M|M+, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. bob+M|M+

    bob+M|M+ L6: Sharp Member

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    Does anyone know why valve makes their maps wrap into themselves? Is there some sort of efficiency in doing this...?

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  2. PL-7764

    PL-7764 L6: Sharp Member

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    I'd imagine there's some kind of efficiency to it. For one thing, it makes a 3D skybox much easier to build since, if everything's in a big square area, the skybox can surround that square rather than snaking out into wherever. Beyond that I'm sure there are more reasons that mean a lot more, but I can't come up with any specifics at the moment...
     
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  3. Cynick

    Cynick L4: Comfortable Member

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    It makes optimizing things easier, more corners means more places to slap down hint brushes. A map in a straight line won't have as many things blocking visibility as a map with plenty of corners that the player can't see around.

    Shmitz explains this well here.
     
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  4. Boylee

    aa Boylee pew pew pew

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  5. lana

    aa lana Currently On: ?????

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    Additionally, the spiral makes it easy to place a central landmark. Valve's design philosophy relies on them, and having it visible from all around makes it apparent where players are. It also reduces walk times.
     
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  6. bob+M|M+

    bob+M|M+ L6: Sharp Member

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    Makes sense. When you wrap a map, there are more opportunities to optimize, you can bank your landmarks back-to-back, and you will be less likely to exceed the map boundaries by forcing yourself to work in the allotted area (I can imagine how difficult it would be stay within the map limits of a 3stage 2cp map), as well as making the skybox easy to deal with. ty
     
  7. Micnax

    aa Micnax I maek map

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    Plus it makes logical sense building-wise. Instead of a long route consisting of what seems to be a single building (uncommon in real life), it centres round a square complex.
     
  8. Dr. Spud

    aa Dr. Spud Grossly Incandescent

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    It's much easier to design interesting layouts when the map naturally curves. I had to make haarp a straight line so the cliff would work, and not being able to curve the map became a big hindrance. It doesn't necessarily mean it has to spiral in on itself, but that's one way to do it.
     
  9. Ravidge

    aa Ravidge Grand Vizier

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    The hammer grid was a lot smaller back in GoldSRC (TFC, hl1), so for (then) ctf_dustbowl, making it wrap around itself was the only way to fit all three stages.. the design carried over for the tf2 version.
     
  10. Mr. Happy

    Mr. Happy L6: Sharp Member

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    You also get a smaller plane lump since lots more brushes can be aligned on the same plane.
     
  11. Icarus

    aa Icarus

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    I'm guessing dustbowl was built in a spiral because of goldsrc limitations of the original.

    Goldrush is the same, because it basically takes the basic concept of dustbowl and applies it to a new game-type.

    Badwater spirals so that RED can have a forward spawn without actually needing a forward spawn room. It helps with spawn camping, and helping players learn the final part of the map before the fighting starts.

    You'll notice that Thunder Mountain does not spiral around itself, nor does Gorge. Mountain Lab does it a little differently, and Upward is done for it's mountain peak theme.

    Hoodoo and Egypt are not spirals as well, and they play perfectly fine (actually pretty popular, especially Egypt)

    Everything said, do whatever suits you the most. Just make sure your map is optimized well enough. Trying to copy other maps too much will make yours feel like yet another clone.
     
  12. grazr

    aa grazr Old Man Mutant Ninja Turtle

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    I beg to differ, but that's just a matter of opinion.

    Hoodoo is too tiny and each area is so small that gameplay isn't fluid. Even YM acknowledges this, there's no need to be polite and say it plays perfectly fine when really the only map the community can say that about is badwater. Hoodoo doesn't spiral, but then it doesn't need to because it's a set of corridors. I wont even get into egypt since it has issues all over the place, least of which the lack of a spiral layout plays a part in.

    The map doesn't have to spiral but there are certain advantages to having it do so. All of which have been listed already and/or explained in the linked tutorials. Gorge is a tiny 3cp map, there's no need for it to wrap on itself. But an |_|¯|_|¯ shape would probably work just fine if you design it effectively. If it's strictly linear you'll find yourself repeating the same doorways/LoS blocking techniques that you can't really pull off more than a couple times before they feel repetative and unimaginative.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  13. Seba

    aa Seba DR. BIG FUCKER, PHD

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    Gorge is 2CP.

    The best reason to wrap maps around is simply optimisation, as mentioned before. That plus corners block sightlines well (if done right).