Portal Viewer
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Author:  Fjoggs [ 04-11-2005 07:03 AM ]
Post subject:  Portal Viewer

Alrigteh, it's time for some tech talk, to bring back some memories. :p

As I'm struggling to get some performance boost on my tourney1 map, I tried to use the portal viewer. Realising that I knew jack squat of what it was trying to show me, I went for the good 'ol google, sadly without good results.

If anyone could tell me alittle about what I'm supposed to be looking at, and what things are positive/negative. Many blue blocks or less that works well. :p

Also, If anyone could post an in-editor screen with the portal viewer loaded on a map that's hinted good, it would been nice.
I could check Q's fallen map, as I believe that one is hinted nicely. :)

Author:  bork[e] [ 04-11-2005 08:07 AM ]
Post subject: 

Maybe you've read this one, but the below link is one of the best tuts imo.


Author:  Fjoggs [ 04-11-2005 08:25 AM ]
Post subject: 

Cheers on the link, good read.

Author:  $NulL [ 04-11-2005 08:54 AM ]
Post subject: 

heres one with animations, ive always liked.


edit :: pdf version

Author:  bork[e] [ 04-11-2005 09:00 AM ]
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Author:  obsidian [ 04-13-2005 10:46 AM ]
Post subject: 

Well ideally, the portal viewer is supposed to be useful for you to try to optimize your map portals. By allowing you to visualize where the actual portals are being generated, it gives you a chance to see areas that may need some optimization. You do this by changing stuff to detail/structural as well as by adding in hint brushes. Ultimately, you want to create new portals that limit the PVS while getting rid of portals that aren't doing anything.

Portals are generated more or less randomly, so sometimes the order in which they were created yields different results. Also, it doesn't always create them in the most optimized manner. You can split up a room in multiple ways, but how these are split often make the difference between a large number of useless portals and a small number of optimized portals.

First of all, try to convert as much of those small brushes to detail. This simplifies the portals the most. Then add a few hint brushes to limit the PVS in places like hallways between rooms and such. There are a bunch of hinting tutorials around that will teach you where to put these. Then look for portals that aren't doing anything with regards to the PVS and use hints to try to remove those.

Keep in mind that the blocksize also generates portals every 1024 game units along every axis. You can increase/decrease the size of this by adding the _blocksize worldspawn entity key/value pair. You can also set it to 0 to disable if you're comfortable to generate your own portals - though you should avoid this unless you really know what you're doing. When building your layout, you may want to build your floorplan keeping the blocks in mind.

If I have the time in the next few days, maybe I'll throw together a few screenshots from my current alpha to illustrate. I have one room that I spent quite a bit of time optimizing that I think will explain this very well.

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