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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 05:39 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Hello everyone (:

After a small break I started working on a new duel/ffa(3-4 players) map.



Looking forward to release an alpha this evening.



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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 07:22 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I like the lighting... could turn out to become a really neat map.




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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 07:42 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


***Alpha 0.3***

Link: http://cityy.explicits.de/uploads/maps/q3ct4_a03.zip

*.map file is included - for those who would like to take a look into it.

I would like to hear what folks think about the (item) layout. :) I hope you enjoy.

hehe AEon, but it's only ambient light (15) at the moment =D



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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 08:35 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Using your convenient map:

  • I took a closer look at you "brown" doorways: The inner arc is divided into *3* patches, instead of just using one. This wastes tris and presently also creates sparklies. It should help to rebuild the doorways once cleanly, to then copy/paste it everywhere else.
  • Just noted you changed the layout, as compared to the map image above :)...
  • You may want to consolidate the design of all your JPs, e.g. use a cut-in half-circle for all of them, just like for the RG JP.
  • Your 90° stairs will also probably need to be created very carefully. Presently the create overdraw inside the stair wall.
  • The 2nd JP (from the left in image), does not let you jump down from the upper LG area. You might want to carve into the wall more, to let the player jump down *past* the JP trigger. Presently you tend to hit that trigger.
  • The top left corridor of the map, felt a bit dead. The shards are not really much of a motivation to take that path, I had thought of putting a RA here, maybe.
  • The TPs had me wondering a while, i.e. how useful they are, but the seem to be fun to use, so they are OK.
  • The RG pool is a funny idea. You may want to rethink the dead end here though... maybe.
  • I really like the MH arena, very neat area to fight. It may be interesting to make this the largest area in the map, by expanding it a bit. Now you would only need to "spiff-up" the other two arenas.
  • Note to make all your stairs detail, and to cover the floor under the stairs with structural caulk brushes. (Did not look at the .map).
  • Remember to caulk behind patches, in the image behind the PG room's wall patch.

I like the map, and it is fun to play.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 11:03 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


***Alpha 0.4***

Link: http://cityy.explicits.de/uploads/maps/q3ct4_a04.zip

Changes:

- reworked the doorways
- reworked JPs
- tried to clean up the 90 degrees stairway :toothy:
- replaced the YA at the RG with a RA (Not sure about this)
- reworked RA JP trigger
- added some stuff to the RG/RL/RA room
- converted stairs to detail brushes
- added caulk behind the JP at the YA/+5s (simply forgotten that)
- moved the two 25s into the top right hallway (see screenshot above)
- added some clip brushes at the doorways

Feedback:

The map feels a bit unbalanced Action is going on at the RA and in the middle. The LG area is a bit dead but I'm not sure what todo to change this. I also don't like the position of the YA at the +5s.

What do folks think about the RG TP exit? I wanted to add something on the platform but I wasn't sure what. Maybe some shards..

ToDo:

- fix RG TP exit position

Off topic:

Xaero uses a f****** aimbot :cry:



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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 11:48 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


  • I am still seeing one of the thin patches in the doorway arches, causing the sparklies.
  • The water level in the RG pools could be lowered by 4u, flush with the floor geometry looks a bit weird.
  • The (top right in image) room, that is the lowest part of the map, is kinda weird IMO. It breaks gameflow because you need to jump down into it and then jump out of it again. To fix this, either bring the floor up to the level of the TP (nearby) or cut another path into the wall, exiting in a side wall of the MH, to give the player an additional exit from that pit.
  • RA placement, IMO, is a bit to easy to get to, it would be better to place it in a more dangerous area, the previously mentioned pit would be one possible location.
  • Try swapping the LG with the PG, to get more action in the current LG arena.
  • The LG arena TP leading to the YA TP might not be really required. From the lower TP a 90° stairs + a JP could also lead up to the upper level YA, maybe.
  • I am not so sure about the pool and the RG. Yes it works, the player will normally be too lazy to actually get the RG, but that may not be the best thing. Have no good suggestion presently, so you might as well keep it.
  • Another 1 or 2 50H might help the map.
  • Something on your 90° stairs might be nifty, some 5H or 5A, also as audio cue.
  • I am also not quite sure about some of your connecting corridors, from the MH arena's RL to the RG arena, and the other "southern" doorway to the LG arena. Will take a look at the map tomorrow in-editor, maybe I can suggest something here.
  • To give the LG arena some "height", you might try to raise the floor by some steps, compared to the MH arena. To avoid having too much of the map on the level of the MH arena floor.

Still a blast to play :)




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 02:07 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Quote:
I am still seeing one of the thin patches in the doorway arches, causing the sparklies.


Which one exactly? I thought that I fixed them all :/

New version tomrrow. I feel glad that you enjoy the map (:



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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 02:25 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I saw it with every doorway I looked at in the RA arena. I'll take a closer look at this in-editor.

Maybe it has another issue, e.g. the "endcap"s (or however they are called) are cutting into the arc of the doorway. You might also look into the "upper edge" "narrow" arcs of the doorways, i.e. parts touching the walls above the doorways. It may be possible to "pull" the patch right through the wall, thus again halving the tris. But this needs testing for sparklies.

Update: I took a look at the doorway right behind the RA... the reason you have such weird issues is that the vertices of your patches are *not* on grid (well the largest possible grid at least), plus you were trying to place the endcaps in you geometry of the doorway arch... cutting right through it. After fixing all this, everything matches up nicely in-editor and in-game I don't see sparklies. Had to lower the door by 8u, but that should be OK. Will build a door version 16u less wide, using support brushes around it, to guarantee that a copy/paste of your doorway will not require cutting up walls additionally to avoid sparklies. Will up it tomorrow.

Pardon my asking... Are you fully aware of how to avoid sparklies at the edges between patches and brushes? If not I could write up a few things with images on what to look out for. In short: The brushes that touch patch edges have to have the exact same length as the patch's edge to avoid sparklies along *that* edge. There are a few exceptions, e.g. a cylinder placed on a floor does not require cutting up the floor (would not be possible anyway).




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PostPosted: 11-14-2009 11:27 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


OK, I created two versions of the doorway:
  • One currently placed in the doorway behind the RA uses support brushes around the patches, making the doorway less wide and high slightly, but lets you copy/paste the complete doorway patches + brush frame into all the other doorways without having sparklie issues with the patches. Brush edges mitered.
  • The other doorway does not have these support brushes, and is floating in the middle of the RA arena. (This may be the better version for you though).

Note: I placed all the doorway patches into a func_group to ensure that they all use the same LOD when you look at them from a distance. To select the func_group (blue lines in-editor) use Ctrl+Alt-Left-Click (on any one of the patches, might require more than one click to select them). Note: func_group is neat to fix LOD issues, but is can cause lighting/shadow issues, so you may want to test Ungroup Entity, should lighting be an issue.

Other notes:
  • All the JPs brushes (not the triggers) can be made detail, and all your doorway brushes as well.
  • Note: When you resize patches by simply dragging them in "edge mode", this *will* place the patch vertices off-grid. I used a 4u grid to put them on grid again:
    • Turn on 4u grid (3-key).
    • Select patch (Shift+click).
    • Go into vertex mode (v-key).
    • Drag a selection box over all patch vertices (LMB-drag), turning them dark blue.
    • Force the vertices to grid, via Ctrl+g.
  • I noted a inverted bevel under the wall patch next to the MH arena's JP. You caulked the patch face near the detail steps. You can delete such "unseen" patches.
  • In-side wall patch of 90° stairs shows sparklies... the first brush step seems to be the issue. I cut into the wall next to that patch, to match brush and patch height, but the "first 90° step" is the issue here, it needs to be moved away from the patch edge.

If you want to copy over parts of my edit, I recommend you run GTKradiant twice, and select/copy/paste between editors. Do not use my map directly, if you are running a version of GTKradiant that is *not* v1.2.13 (the version I am using). I noted that between editor versions some entities and texture alignments can get messed up.


To avoid patch issues in the future, please take a close look at how I aligned the vertices in the doorway, and compare them with your own.

Hope this helps.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-15-2009 09:04 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


***Alpha 0.5***

Link: http://cityy.explicits.de/uploads/maps/q3ct4_a05.zip

Changelog:

- lowered water level of the RG pool
- replaced the RA with a YA
- added some more 25s
- reworked the YA area ( near GL )
- replaced all my doorways with AEon's doorways - thanks AEon (: Also the advice about the 3 sided brushes helped me a lot.Though it took me some time to figure out how to select a "func_group" in radiant 1.5. You need to select one brush of the group and then press ctrl+alt+E.

Feedback:

- The railgun is a really important weapon on this map - if not the mostt important. I'm still not sure about the RG area - at least I want to keep the JP but maybe remove the pool..
- the LG area is still a bit dead (decided not to switch LG with PG since LG > PG). Can't find reasons for this.. maybe it's only bot behaviour..

Other stuff:

- did you already discover all the nice rail angles in the map?! :b
http://img69.imageshack.us/gal.php?g=shot0013.jpg
Really usefull if you play duels.
- Damn, I forgott to add +5s to the 90 degrees stairs..
- I really appreciate AEon's feedback but some other opinions would also be really nice!



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PostPosted: 11-15-2009 10:57 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Some ideas:
  • MH platform, extrude one step (one yellow grid unit), to make it less of a ledge.
  • The closed off (ceiling) area near the LG IMO works with the steps, bit angly/clunky though, maybe the gameflow here can be improved with a few more rounded off corners.
  • It might be nice to cut into this closed off area's ceiling, and place something like "planks" on the ceiling to create interesting shadows in this area, plus make the room brighter again. The shadows from the planks in the MH area are something that really looks neat.
  • The TPs in the LG arena in this setup, IMO, are useless, and should be completely removed. The player can just as well use the LG JP. Placing the lower TP where it used to be would make more sense IMO. You might want to think about connecting the different arenas with the TPs instead, e.g. from the RG arena to the LG arena or into the MH arena.
  • The simple TPs look nice, as a "temp fill-in" put water into the TP frame :)... should look nice too. You might like to miter the TP frames to save a few tris.
  • The TP exist for the RG also feels kinda gimmicky. Maybe I just don't see it's tactical worth.
  • The PG is too close to the wall, IMO.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-15-2009 11:21 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


@ AEon:

Quote:
The TPs in the LG arena in this setup, IMO, are useless, and should be completely removed. The player can just as well use the LG JP. Placing the lower TP where it used to be would make more sense IMO. You might want to think about connecting the different arenas with the TPs instead, e.g. from the RG arena to the LG arena or into the MH arena.


Quote:
The TP exist for the RG also feels kinda gimmicky. Maybe I just don't see it's tactical worth.


I agree that the TPs don't make much sense but - IMO - TPs across the whole map don't work well. Maybe in TDM it would be fine but in duel it would be very annoying - 1 player could do some frags and then play the famous TP game - this way it would be hard to regain control.. I'm trying to find a good balance between the game modes. Gonna mess arround with it (:

Edit:

I'm pretty sure I wont move the lower TP in the LG room to it's old place. I like those to 25s there - pretty usefull but dangerous to grab :)
I already have an idea for the TPs btw. Maybe it's gonna be surprising ]:>



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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-16-2009 10:26 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


No update today - tho I have some screenshots (:



Added some detail. I'm currently thinking of a direction to go with the design.



This area needs some support. Tho I have no idea what to do here yet.



Added a new, small corridor leading to the teleporter which was at the LG.

Edit:

I was browsing through Sock's photography pages (http://www.simonoc.com/pages/materials.htm) today. Really impressive stuff :up:



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PostPosted: 11-16-2009 01:39 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Map is getting an "Italian" vibe. Interesting.




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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 09:53 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Some more Screenshots:



The previously posted shot but now ingame.



Added some detail to the LG room.



There is some weird light where it shouldn't be...

Other stuff:

I had some problems adding a skybox after including all this height detail. What I did was puting some kind of half box over the map and filling the holes with caulk brushes. I would appreciate if someone could look into it when I release the next update.



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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 10:09 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Your stairs look a bit wide, you might like to either add a angled brush in the middle, at the angle of the steps, to visually loosen up the "mass" of steps, or maybe make the steps less wide and use ramps on the left and right.

About the skybox, I wanted to mention this as a tip a while back: When you have a wall, and place a skybox brush right on top of it, then at the top edge of the wall you will see black shadow seams. To avoid this give the upper edge of all walls, e.g. a 8u wide top, thus placing the skybox brush 8u *away* from the top edge of the wall. Presently doing just that in AEdm7... :owned:




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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 10:23 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


AEon wrote:
Your stairs look a bit wide


This may be because of my fov - tho I like the idea of two stairways seperated by a brush in mid.

AEon wrote:
Presently doing just that in AEdm7... :owned:


Hehe, I can imagine that this is a bit annoying on such a big map :b Didn't know about the skybox thingie - I don't think I have any brush connected directly with the skybox - even tho I'll check it again.



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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 10:27 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Forgot to mention... the trick with the Skybox is to cover each room and arena with a "half-box", and *not* use one large one. It is usually no problem to look from one room into the skybox of the next one (usually :)). You basically treat the skybox the way you would close the room with a normal ceiling. If you still have problems, I'll take a look at the .map.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 10:34 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


AEon wrote:
the trick with the Skybox is to cover each room and arena with a "half-box", and *not* use one large.


Ooops.. I put a "half-box" over the entire map. This seems to be the same as putting one big box over the map... Or do you think it would work?



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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 10:47 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


It works all right, but it is almost as bad as creating a box map. Vis cannot occlude anything this way, the engine must assume that everything is visible (well most of the time).

Note: If you have something like a clock tower in the middle of the map, and plan to be able to see it from all over the map, i.e. other arenas, you will probably need to use one big half-box skybox.

Trouble is, what I suggested - skybox on a per room basis - implies that your walls are always high enough to hide anything tall behind that wall. When you look at AEdm7, you'll notice that the buildings have the same outdoor height throughout, only in the RL arenas looking outward of the map do I vary the height significantly.




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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 01:02 PM           Profile   Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


didn't know that about the skybox thing. I've always used one giant skybox to cover everything. Makes a lot of sense though.




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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 01:19 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Note that the compiler does some clever things if you stick with geometry that stays at right angles. E.g. if a lot of your "walls" are the same height and flat, the compiler with create a horizontal cut through most of your half-box. This can actually lead to automatic cutting off of areas. But I would not count on things like that.

As always, one has to do some test compiles to see what is happening with vis.

Also note, my "tips" are *very* conservative, because I try to avoid potentially ugly situations. You folks may well be able to pull off the one-skybox thing. Though as mentioned I'd not recommend it.




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PostPosted: 11-17-2009 05:10 PM           Profile   Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Yeah, I had always assumed the compiler would make a horizontal cut automagically for me.

Still, it's better to be absolutely sure the vis is sealed off than assume that the compiler will take care of the work for you.




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PostPosted: 11-18-2009 03:19 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


On the horizontal "portal" cut... if the compiler does not do it, a horizontal hint brush would let you "force" this. That may help. But such "open box" maps always have the tendency to show inexplicable behavior in vis. E.g. you look at a structural wall, but the engine draws everything behind it, even though it actually should not.




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PostPosted: 11-18-2009 11:53 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


***UPDATE - Alpha 0.6***

Link:
http://cityy.explicits.de/uploads/maps/q3ct4_a06.zip



Changelog:

- added some more detail
- moved the LG TP
- added another TP which is connected with the RG TP
- worked on the skybox
- made some TPs look like "doors" - this is not final yet..
- a lot of other stuff (:

Feedback:

- what do you think about the LG/YA room TPs?
- I have no idea what todo with the area over the MH.. removing the wall would make it too open, IMO. Tho with the wall it feels a bit strange.
- Could you please take a look at the skybox AEon? :/ It's a bit messed up because of all the height detail... I believe there is much room to optimize here.

Other Stuff:

- rspeeds are way better than in my last map (:

Edit:

- added a screenshot



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PostPosted: 11-18-2009 12:42 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Hmm... somehow I have the feeling that several areas are getting out of hand. Pathing-wise. The biggest issue I see are all your out-lying paths, the two southern corridors connecting (they need items to make them useful) to the central GL area (upper floor), and all the new stuff next to the LG area. All the stairs here and the new TP corner... hmm... "Feels" like much here is redundant... problem is alas I have no better suggestions.

Maybe Pat has the time to suggest some pathing ideas, he is pretty good at that.

Weapon placement feels strange as well. I.e. the RL in the RG arena is too close to the PG, IMO.

About the skybox... it might be best to select one skybox face, Shift+A, to have all skybox brushes selected and delete them all. You have to go from room to room and build a "half-box" onto each one. But as mentioned on a per room basis. Another thing to be very careful about some of your ceilings are detail, thus they do *not* make the map airtight here.

Sorry, my comments today are not really very useful.

Idea: I really like the Italian town-like areas in the LG and MH arena, maybe stick with that theme and turn all your out-lying corridors into actual "narrow" streets of a small town, instead of the closed off ceiling rooms (that I don't really like).




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PostPosted: 11-27-2009 02:00 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote




I'm still working - just had a lot todo for school these days...

I asked Pat to take a look into the layout. Dunno if he has time for it tho.



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PostPosted: 11-27-2009 09:30 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Hey man,

Of course I'll give it a look - but it'll be a couple days 'til I get home. I'm on some random laptop right now checking things for the first time in a little while :).

I'm also building an Italy map right now. I started it for the NoGhost Comp. but I've been very slow progress wise lately and decided to bail from that and save it for my own time. Anyway, I can probably give you some good feedback if that's the direction you want to go in.

Later on,
-pat




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Insane Quaker
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PostPosted: 11-30-2009 07:03 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


OK, the first thing you need to fix is the teleporters. TPs are, for me, a very specialized gameplay mechanic. I think you should only use them when you absolutely have to because they are disorienting and make your maps harder to learn. Here you have a bunch of totally unnecessary TPs that make for confusing, redundant gameplay. Below I'll try to show you what's wrong with these TPs while also pointing out general guidelines for when and when not to use TPs in the future.

Two-way TP by the LG
Here is a perfect example of a superfluous two-way TP. You could have just as easily cut a hole in the wall where that TP is and bridged the small gap over the two 25s with a path to the other side. This would also help to fuse that hallway area together making for more logical, connected gameplay, rather than the disconnected halls reconnected by TPs that you have now.
Tips:
-Never use a TP when a simple path will do.
-When you have disconnected hallways and dead-ends, avoid the impulse to "fix" or reconnect them with two-way TPs and re-do the layout altogether. You may be fixing the main problem, but new ones arise. Players get annoyed when they have run down a hallway to get to a TP - it's just not logical. "We have the teleportation technology, so why not put the teleporter at the beginning of the hallway and save us all this walkin'?!"

Two-way TP by the MH
Both these TPs can be removed. The ground floor TP to the RL is redundant when you look at the bouncer and the stair paths right next to it. In fact, one could argue that these paths have lost their value because the TP route is so much quicker to the RL.
On the other side, the TP by the RL can be removed because it's just as easy to simply jump down.
Tips:
-Never use a TP when a bouncer will do.
-Be careful when placing a TP to avoid overpowering adjacent paths completely. When you're balancing alternate paths, you have to factor in your TPs as routes too.
-Not all TPs need two be two-ways, especially ones that are very close to eachother because often it is just as easy to jump down a level as it is to use a high TP to low TP for the same purpose. Remember, we're trying to minimize TPs here by only using them when we really need them.

Two-way TP by the RG
The TP on the ground by the SG could create some problems because it is so much easier than going to the bouncer up to the RG that people would never use anything else coming from that hallway. However, there is currently a YA sitting on the ground floor of the RG room, so pretty much every time you go for the RG you're going to skip that TP and pick up the YA on the way to the bouncer. Depending on the final item placement, this TP will either be expendable or overpower the other paths, so I'd get rid of it.
The TP by the RG could just as easily be a hole in the wall which drops down to the hallway that holds the SG and RL ammo. That's something to think about.
Tips:
-Again, watch out for TPs that disturb path balance. In many situations you have multiple paths leading to the same destination which is good if they are balanced, but not if one is a TP and is thus much faster and more powerful than all the other paths.

One last idea regarding TPs: I noticed you tend to build rectangular floorplans. This is fine, but just know that your center area is going to see the most action and your "side rooms" and going to be less connected and weaker strategically. Right now it looks like basically you have three atriums (one center and two side atriums/bases), so the two players will probably each take a side room to stock up and eventually meet in the middle to fight. Perhaps you could add a risky two-way teleport that takes you from the back of one side room to the back of the other for surprise attacks and also to bring circular gameflow back to the dead-ends that result from a rectangular layout.

I'll give more feedback after I see what you think about the TPs; I think it's good to tackle one problem at a time, starting with the biggest/most obvious one. Let me know if you're unfamiliar with gameplay terms like "path balance" or "circular gameflow". A good place to start reading about these is Lunaran's site.

-pat




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PostPosted: 12-01-2009 01:31 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Pat,
I pretty much agree with all your points. In a few places I had suggested removing the TPs as well, only that your explanations are more compelling :). The side passages have been an issue from the beginning, since they were too dead.

The "circular" two-way pathed TPs in the side corridors sound like a very good idea.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 12-01-2009 11:07 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


***UPDATE - Alpha 0.7***

Link: http://cityy.explicits.de/uploads/maps/q3ct4_a07.zip (arround 730kb)

Thanks for your feedback Pat - I removed all the TPs for now and added an extra path to the LG room (connected upper YA area to the old TP path). I was already thinking about that a long time since AEon had already suggested it earlier. I'm still messing arround with the item layout..
These TPs "overcrossing" the map would be hard to implement, IMO.. I think it may be a bit - adding them would also make keeping controle (in duel) even easier than it already is.
I'm not sure about the two ways leading from the LG room to the central YA. The lower one seems a bit useless but sometimes it can be really surprising for your opponent if you travel there. :owned:

Xaero still uses an aimbot.



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PostPosted: 12-01-2009 01:10 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


To explain a few ideas more easily here an overview of the map, marking all the sectors with letters, the arenas with numbers:

    Image

Thoughts:
  • IMO, the southern path is too linear (a,b,c,d,e,f), it is less of a problem with (g,h,2,i), I'd suggest expanding c) downward, turning this room into another open sky courtyard (townyard, like 1,2,3), and then move a,b up, probably removing j) completely. Somehow try to get a,b off axis from c,d.
    Maybe close the b,c doorway, and cut a door in the southern walls of b) and c) connecting them.
  • I still find i,h somehow useless. Not the path per se, but the items here.
  • i) as an indoor room is fine, but I'd turn h) into a townyard as well, and also a).
  • a) to k) is a bit long an AP might help here.
  • Maybe Pat can use the layout to think of path improvements, the issues I see are a,b,j then f), and also h).

Small issues:
  • The arc in k) has patch alignment issues.
  • The water floor in 3), IMO, should be made wider, to actually force a splash sound when you grab the LG, presently you can simply "seal" the LG. Maybe use patches in the stream's waterbed to make the water flow more fluidly around the corners.
  • In 3), it might be nifty to add a small ledge (see red x) to make it easier to jump right to the planks with the 5x5A (pink). It may be possible to jump into the door ledge (green) then the planks, presently. I don't seem to have that skill though.
  • Removing one of the JPs in 3) was an interesting move to make f) much more meaningful if you want to get to e).
  • Maybe actually merge a,b,j into one townyard.
  • Nice broken floor in 3), but please playerclip the complete floor area.
  • You might like to start using the "nice" AEcell JPs shader/textures :).
  • When coming from c,b it could be good to place something important at j), to motivate folks to actually take the lower path to 1), instead of staying on the upper path a,k,1 to get the YA.
  • I am not really sure the RLs in 2,3 are placed that well, to close together IMO. Maybe put the RLs in a) and 3), and the GL in 2).

I like 2), and 3) is getting there with the RG placed a bit higher from h). Though RL next to RG... hmmm. But first we should try to finalize the pathing, the item/weapon placement can then be done.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 12-03-2009 10:09 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Related to your screenshot AEon:



I reworked a),b) and j) and "merged" them to one path. I also got rid of the second RL - the "surviving" RL is where the GL was. I moved the railgun-YA to the old rocket launcher spawn and put the PG to the old YA place.



Opened up this area and also h) - I liked this idea :)

Well, you will see all the changes with the next update. :owned:

What do folks think about the LG room? I'm looking for an alternative path out there if you are on the lower level - tho I didn't have a convincing idea yet..



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PostPosted: 12-03-2009 11:08 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Lookin' great. It's already pretty fun, especially the main room. Still, I have a couple large ideas for this one before I get into the little stuff.

I agree with AEon about the peripheral paths. They do feel very "dead". The logic in me wonders why I have to travel to the perimeter of the map simply to get to the next room over. To make matters worse, you've had to "bend" some of them a bit to compensate for hinting, making them even less direct. I believe these problems are originating from the basic "straight line-up" formation of your rooms.

Ehem, *John Madden Voice*

Image

I know this is over-simplified, but just notice the obvious advantages of taking the direct routes from atrium to atrium, rather than looping around. The only reason I think you'd want to loop around the perimeter is for items or a sneakier way to enter the main atrium.

This is going to be a very tough problem to avoid in the map's current state. I think you have to actually change your room formation a little bit. Here's one possibility.

Image

The main atrium has simply been shifted up a little bit. Any hallways you decide to make will now lie within the basic "footprint" of the map, making them much more logical.

---

The second thing I wanted to bring to your attention is the severe imbalance between the two side atriums - let's call them "bases", because each player will likely claim territory in one of them to stock up before a fight in the center.

The biggest problem is that one base holds the RG in the far back corner, making it extremely easy to guard. You may not have experienced this first hand yet because bots don't take advantage of map control, but in a map like this with human players that is a big deal. A little imbalance is good, but not this much. I have a few ideas for fixes...

1.) Relocate the RG to the center. Create imbalance only with armor/ammo. For instance, you could put an RA in the left base and a YA on the right. You could also give each base an RL, but one has more ammo than the other. You could even try a little health imbalance, perhaps by giving the down player a little extra.

2.) The other option is to keep the RG well that you have there and simply put a TP behind it which links the two bases. Put the other end of the TP on the ground floor of the right base, or anywhere that is less exploitable to an attack. The left base would have a huge item advantage over the right, but the right base could surprise the left from behind, perhaps even stealing an item or two.

3.) Or maybe you could think of something entirely different.

---

I suggest taking some time before this next alpha. Really give the changes you decide to make a good run-through and re-read the advice AEon and I have given before uploading. Ask yourself questions about the balance, gameflow, hinting, etc - it's the only way to build a better gameplay understanding/intuition. Once that's done, we can probably move on to the smaller stuff and then you can finally get to makin' this thing! Enjoy,

-pat




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PostPosted: 12-03-2009 11:51 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Pat,
I like reading your comments... even though I build maps in a completely different way, it is interesting to have things thought out. So the basic idea would the to define your "bases" (with different height levels), to then rethink how they should be connected. Sounds good.

Something to consider (Pat) - though I am not really a tourney player - is that those outer paths can be very useful if they actually contain items vital to control the map, i.e. the RA and the MH and powerful weapons RL/RG. If you keep those out of the main arena, the player dominating that area, will get into trouble, because the other player can "fill up" on very powerful items - after respawn - sticking to the outside paths, i.e. the other player has a chance at a comeback.


Just noted, the first of Pat's images could be turned into a figure-8 layout if you remove the direct connections between the 3 arenas. Something of sorts that fKd did in temp01.

IIRC, the good tourney maps had a not too simple layout that *forced* the dominating player the cover a lot of ground in the map to keep "on top" of items like the MH, RA or a power-up (and even weapons?), trying to time their respawn times.

cityy,
something you might like to re-think: "Does the map really *need* to be tourney map?". I am guessing, but you may be wanting to create a tourney map because they tend to be smaller and can be built more quickly. But as the discussion should be showing, tourney maps are actually more the "high road of mapping", because they are so tactical in nature. A FFA map is a lot more forgiving in that respect, and might be a better focus for your "first" map.

Please note these are just ideas...




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