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Everything posted by Freaky_Banana

  1. Just played this for fun and it was great against bots. very QQC heavy, but I like that. Only thing I was a bit confused about was the mid angles and the bombsites felt a little flat since they were so cramped. But overall strong theme!
  2. OK, small update: Gameplay is locked in for now! The current workshop version is the one that I will add the initial 3D skybox to. After its implementation I will get in contact with creators and try to involve their communities to help playtest somehow (wish me luck!). From that point forward I will make pretty whatever part of the map I feel like is going to remain relatively untouched.
  3. I've pushed a new update to the workshop (hopefully gets approved tonight). https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2392048922 Mainly I've removed a slice of the plantzone that was on the Terrorist end of the bus as well as the possibility for self-boosting into the window from the street (by insetting the number plate). Also there were tiny fixes and adding more believable cover/detail, for instance these doors for the houses or an electrical box on the side of the train station. And @blackdog , I agree on that approach. For now I am a little bit hesitant to ask creators for their thoughts, since the aesthetics are really underdeveloped. For that reason I believe I will start by contacting 3kliksphilip, because he's known for being very gameplay-centric with custom maps. But I already have plans for a 3D skybox that I would like to implement very soon (after a final round with the SE discord community test). That is my go-ahead moment for reaching out to anyone else. Thanks for your advice!
  4. Thanks for your reply! I agree that simplifying the other areas should help reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed as a CT. In fact, a change sort of like what you sketched out for the train tunnel is something I had planned to implement regardless of the potential boost changes. Maybe that difference alone will help reduce the uncomfortable feeling to an acceptable degree. Here are some WIP progress pictures of what I did: In addition I rotated the train station and repositioned the cars in an attempt to create a more natural defensive position for CTs from which they can access the boost, the street and the tunnel with only minor movements. And to touch on your second point as well: you rightly pointed out that playtesting with more different people might already sharpen the image of what the real issues are. And I would love to playtest with more new people! Standing against that is that a) wingman is always only four players at a time, instead of a potential 20 for a casual test, and b) there seem to be no fixed-time playtests for wingman maps in general (which I entirely understand from an organizer's point of view). This means it has to be impromptu playtests every time, which then creates a different limitation: Most of the time it's the same stock of people who agree to do playtesting for the map. I guess I could ask for specifically only new people every time, but I am afraid of spamming the always same discord channels with too many playtest requests and building a reputation that way. Do you agree on my assessment of this issue or is it just a normal part of level design and I'm overthinking it? Thanks for reading.
  5. Hi everyone, there's been more playtests and I want to share with you something that I've noticed and am struggling to address so far. It concerns the discrepancy of what playtesters report as problems and how they actually play the level. I have found that at least on this map specifically, my playtesters express concerns about possibilities that rarely have any relevance in their games and that work exactly as intended when they do ever so rarely happen. I'm hoping that some of you might have relevant experience or advice for me on how to deal with this dichotomy of what playtesters say and what they do, especially in regards to which changes to implement and which complaints to ignore. Straight to the point, let me introduce to you what has been vexing me recently: This is a one-way drop located at the CT end of beach which I added in a recent version of the map (replacing a stair). This drop was introduced in an effort to reduce flank opportunities for Ts and allow the CTs to focus more on the main confrontations on the street and tunnel level. I felt this change was necessary because multiple people had given feedback that it felt very difficult for CTs to cover all four T pathes of approach (Tunnel, Street, Apps and Beach). I figured this solution would significantly reduce the necessity to check beach as a CT, because in wingman mode, a boost requires the entire team thus making it very obvious when it's happening: If no T has shown anywhere on the map, maybe you need to check the boost. This is further helped by the fact that this boost spot is the farthest to reach from T spawn by a large margin (14 secs knife-running vs ~7 secs to other positions). At the same time this change clearly conveyed to Ts the opportunity for a flank along the beach, something that apparently hadn't gotten through before: In all previous playtests combined a single T had ever used the beach path. Playtesting with this one-way drop in place delivered on my expectations exactly: The very first round Ts committed to the boost after roughly 20 seconds. CTs by this time had become suspicious of the lack of contact and one player had rotated into the boost, where a fight then ensued. After this, the boost wasn't used again in the 11 following rounds played. Yet, after the game playtesters reported that they felt like the map still had too many pathes. They described this as a "chaotic nature" and singled out especially the beach as the best candidate for getting removed, because it leads attackers into your back, making it hard to check both ways constantly as a CT. Looking at the numbers of how often Ts use the beach, this may appear a logical suggestion. Unfortunately, this solution fails to recognize something that every single CT player (including the ones advocating the beach's removal) repeatedly took advantage of in their games: pushing the beach as a CT. The beach plays an important role for CTs: it is the one opportunity they have for getting a flank going. At every other position they could push, Ts hold significant advantages in cover, timing and number of playable angles. Thus the beach is the single source of variety in gameplay for CTs, with its equal footing for aggressive fights. This variety seems very welcome to players: In the latest playtest alone, the beach was pushed by a CT five times in 12 rounds. This leaves me with a dilemma. Should I trust the (very limited) data and keep the boost or should I remove it simply to soothe CTs' minds? I believe this boils down to a few aspects which all revolve around a similar concern: - How much should I prioritize feedback from playtesters with limited experience on the map? - Could CTs get used to the boost once they learn the level (and is it smart to have such a barrier to entry in place, trading off player numbers for gameplay depth?) - Do I find it advisable to reduce the path variety for Ts in both gameplay and visuals (the beach is a major part of Loreley's theme) and render the entire beach effectively unnecessary for them? = How do I balance playtesters' (/players') perception versus my knowledge and the data of how the map is played? As mentioned in the introduction, I'd be grateful for any advice. Thanks for reading.
  6. Hi everyone, time for an update! I recently did playtesting with some people from the SE discord and have gathered valuable feedback on my latest version (I had shifted CT spawn onto the beach, see the radar of what we playtested in this Spoiler). EDIT: Workshop version of changes now live! https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2392048922 The Positives: The Downsides: New Changes (with pics): I really hope that these changes make the map more intuitive for all players. I think the previous version fell short because it didn't work in the way that CS:GO players are used to play. I am optimistic that my simplification both of pathes and of map control address this issue. Please let me know what you think! Thank you for reading!
  7. Freaky_Banana


    The theme of this map looks really cool and I think your first "pretty corner" is gorgeous! I'm very much looking forward to what you will do with this project, but as you rightly said, the layout seems suboptimal for competitive 5v5 in its current state. Keep it up!
  8. Freaky_Banana


    I really like the way CT Spawn looks. For middle I haven't checked it out in game but maybe you will want to add a little more contrast there. It all looks quite flat, grey and same-y, even though the lighting does help out a bit. Edit: I checked it out in game now. From CT side all is fine but as a T I didn't have the faintest clue where to expect engagement in mid. And even after I had picked out where the defense spots were, it was hard to judge depth. Colored walls or some plants would really help with guiding attention to the right spots and giving sharp edges or features by which to understand the space. Also dividing focus between that big wooden box to the right and the far back position (CT spawn entrance) felt uncomfortable. On another note, I really love the theming on the path from T Spawn into B through long. My only grievance here is the really awkward path to the double doors. Walking in circles feels bad and it significantly increases rotate times since you essentially have to walk that entire section, if the bomb was planted on B. I do really like the map though, so keep it up! Cheers
  9. Hello everyone, just in time for you to play over the easter break, I have pushed an update to Loreley addressing the feedback from the last playtesting session. Yiu can find all updated screenshots at the imgur link: https://imgur.com/gallery/yfOQJZQ
  10. Hey, this layout looks really interesting! A few remarks from just running around with bots: B seems very easy to take. Seems like you really don't want to be stuck in the site. Also the main A path for Ts doesn't feel super great, just a little too contrived. Similarly for CTs, the courtyard feels a little too open? But that's probably intended. Finally, I hope this radar reflects new updates that simply aren't on the workshop yet, because I think mid would benefit from having less tight chokepoints. If you want to make mid go through the church, maybe think about making some of these really huge double doors as the entrances on both sides. Something like this but 5/3 the size: In any case, excited to see, where this is going!
  11. Holy hell, that is some REALLY NICE barbershop signs!
  12. Thanks for your great feedback, Zombi! I agree with a lot of these points. Spent some time today to address them: Changes are now live on the workshop version. Cheers!
  13. Alright everyone, workshop is up: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2392048922 ! I couldn't be bothered to deal with TAR and instances, so I offer you this crappy 2015-looking piece of overview instead: Please excuse me for it ... I swear I will make a pretty one once the geo is locked in. Oh and I chose to make my own truck models, because the prop_static ones I used before had shitty hitboxes.
  14. Thanks, great to hear you like it! This it the first time I am really moving past simple greyboxing. I am also really interested in finding out how that crawlspace plays. Bots are just way too stupid for that sort of thing ^^. They barely even use the beach / house routes... So there is a lot to be learned from a playtest!
  15. Freaky_Banana


    I was already wondering what you were working on all that time in the SDK . Looks great, I will definitely check it out with bots!
  16. Long time no see everyone. I finally started up Hammer again and worked on this a bit. I created a new path inside the house, reproportioned the map and gave it a new dark aesthetic, just because. What do you all think? More pictures on Imgur: https://imgur.com/gallery/kLiYONZ Layout picture to follow. I am working with MANY instances and that's a pain for Terri's Autoradar. Please feel free to message me, if you've figured out a smart workaround / fix for that. Workshop link after Overview is done.
  17. I really like the visual idea for A site! I will check it out in game, when I get the chance.
  18. Additionally, using cover to your advantage is a core part of playing CSGO. As the map maker you have the opportunity to guide your player through your layout as well as show them the best positions from where to play it by means of placing cover in the right spots. The best maps use the level architecture to generate much of this cover and the according "flow" of the level. All that is just to say, your layout and your cover placement have to work in tandem. You can't really finalize a layout without knowing your cover.
  19. Thanks! The software is called PureRef, it's free if you want it to be (meaning they only take money on donation basis), but honestly I've found myself so happy with it, it is definitely worth a few dollars!
  20. Ok people, there has been a development, but not of the in-game type. Despite all the corona-caused financial troubles, I have just clinched a full-time job. This means I am more unsure than ever how much time I will be able to spend on Oakwood as well as when. I will probably keep spending some of my evenings with it, but there is a lot to prepare and then a lot to adapt to, so it might take a while. I'm certain this isn't goodbye, but certainly not the devlog I had been hoping to put out today. On the other hand, though ... - HEY, I'VE GOT A JOB, HECK YES! - So I will see you people tomorrow, or next week or month or whenever
  21. Freaky_Banana


    That quarry is an insanely cool area!
  22. The post has only the best pics, find the rest on imgur: https://imgur.com/gallery/CQKlVkK Ok people, I haven't finished A side, outsides or middle yet, but I'll be unable to work on this for the next two weeks and wanted to deliver some on my promise before then. So here is a look at the map's new and (hopefully) improved B side. As always, everything is fast compile and temp textures, because full compiles LITERALLY KILL MY LAPTOP in this heat. - B Site - - B Caves - (this hallway is not part of the playable area). - Skywalk - Credit for the glass textures to Skybex and Yanzl from cs_cruise and Puddy and Yanzl from de_breach! Thank you for being able to use these now, long-term plan is 100% custom content. These shots are only meant to summarize the general style of the B area, you can find more detail and some descriptions I whipped up for the rest of the pics on imgur! https://imgur.com/gallery/CQKlVkK Cheers, see you all soon
  23. I can't read the caption, but I will be damned if I let Hammer-ception go unliked!
  24. Ok people, I've been working a bit on this again lately, and I finally got around to making a proper canvas of reference images. Here it is! This goes along with my attempt at nailing down the first art pass. I've also finished a large amount of mostly small layout changes - the bigger ones I implemented are roughly the ones shown in the post above (finished those as well). So hopefully I will soon have some finished first pass pictures to show you, stay tuned for that.
  25. I like the theme! Definitely something to work with. From the overview it does seem VERY fastpaced, almost more like a wingman map in timings. Also lots of straight sight lines between buildings. Maybe if you expand the playable area that can give you the space to add some more nooks and lean into the theme of weird paths through some of the ramshackle housing, which would really help bring the map alive. The main paths could probably remain as wider streets lined by colonial houses.
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