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nikkoship

ar_grotto [CS:GO WIP]

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Nice work so far.

Couple of quick notes:

- screenshot 3: the concrete texture in the lower level could use a bit of aligning as it looks a bit random and unrealistic. The seams, vertical and horizontal, are biased towards the left window. It would be better to shift the vertical seam either to the center between the 2 windows or completely the one edge of the brush where it's not visible at all. The horizontal seam could be lowered to the bottom edge of the windows to create continuity and visual coherence. It will look tidier and people with OCD won't be pissed off :-D

- screenshot 4: the blue brick texture could use a bit of downscaling. If you are using the default 0.25 scale, I believe going down to 0.2 should be fine (or somewhere close if you wish to keep the brick edges of the texture aligned with the ceiling and floor planes)

- Custom content can be cut down as I see some props in the screenshots that could be easily replaced with almost similar stock props in CSGO. If the gameplay is good and fun, no one will notice the custom props :)

Keep up the good work

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I remember these screens. I like the geometry but I think you need to spend some time working on the lighting of the scene, especially in the central area the orange is too much and I think makes everything too gloomy/unpleasant. I'd throw in at least some white floodlights and use the color for more of an accent.

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Nice work so far.

Couple of quick notes:

- screenshot 3: the concrete texture in the lower level could use a bit of aligning as it looks a bit random and unrealistic. The seams, vertical and horizontal, are biased towards the left window. It would be better to shift the vertical seam either to the center between the 2 windows or completely the one edge of the brush where it's not visible at all. The horizontal seam could be lowered to the bottom edge of the windows to create continuity and visual coherence. It will look tidier and people with OCD won't be pissed off :-D

- screenshot 4: the blue brick texture could use a bit of downscaling. If you are using the default 0.25 scale, I believe going down to 0.2 should be fine (or somewhere close if you wish to keep the brick edges of the texture aligned with the ceiling and floor planes)

- Custom content can be cut down as I see some props in the screenshots that could be easily replaced with almost similar stock props in CSGO. If the gameplay is good and fun, no one will notice the custom props :)

Keep up the good work

Yeah, I went kind of crazy with custom props. I've gone through my map and replaced the custom barrels and other basic clutter with the stock models. I've left some of the more showcasey ones in for now (like the tank). I haven't done a compile, but I think this will cut down alot of the size just based on what VIDE told me. As far as texture alignment/scaling goes, that is something that I've spent alot of time with lately. Most of my textures were just left on default and unaligned, because it had been awhile since I built the original brushes. After watching many of topphatwaffle's vids and various other guides, I now realize how noobish alot of it looks and have been making sure to clean them up. I think most of the hr brick textures look better at .15, which I've scaled the red brick and the blue brick to. http://i.imgur.com/YxzSsqE.jpg

 

I know people hate editor screenshots but I thought I'd share these with anyone who's interested in the map. Currently I am working on making a bridge that connects the upper catwalks to each other.

http://imgur.com/tdO695v

I want to redo the railing as it was pretty noisy before. There is a shallow layer of water on the floor so that people can just jump down from the catwalk smoothly without taking fall damage (if they aim for the water).

I am working with foliage right under where the light comes in from the cave's ceiling, it looks a little funky in the editor. From lots of different screenshots of caves, foliage tends to grow in patches wherever the light comes in. Usually at the mouth or under an opening. Trying to work something like this into the map.

http://imgur.com/XFfweJs

The sniper hut area felt very cramped and claustrophobic. I think putting it on stilts helps open that area up as it lets people pass under it.

http://imgur.com/7E2sQt5 - Threw in some open containers. In general I think they're an improvement over the older ones and they give the map a new spawn point. They're not as long too, so they keep that space near the truck (middle area) less cramped.

As blackdog said, I do agree that the lighting is a little too warm. I'd like to experiment with some whiter lights like in de_castle's caverns. I also would like to rethink the "garage" lighting in the tank area. I was going for something more industrial and I liked cs_office's greenish lighting but it doesn't feel right. It's too green. I think I might go with something like this - http://i.imgur.com/nCXNg95.jpg. I think it looks a little softer, it could be brighter though.

 

I general, I think I'm overthinking the lighting colors. I'll probably cut it back to something a little more standard.

I've got some more work to do before I compile again, but I'll post more screens soon.

Edited by nikkoship

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Quite like this light test in the last shot.

The bridge is something that I was thinking about back when you shared the shots originally, so I think it will be an interesting addition. No idea about how it will play out though.

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Okay, after a very lazy winter break I think it's time to step to it and finally finish this thing. I only put about 25 hours into the map over the break, so I've still got a ways to go. But I figured I'd update the thread since it has been a couple of months. 

 

 

Generally added further detail to "blue" areas of the map:

http://imgur.com/6joXnvE 

http://imgur.com/z5VUCfm

http://imgur.com/OQK8Fyb

http://imgur.com/HzzjDpd

The map is semi - symmetrical, but I think that copy pasting/flipping 180 is kind of a lazy way to make a map. So I want to make each side of the map feel a little bit different. Basically, I want to use different brick colors to help people know where they are on the map along with other visual indicators (because sometimes it's easy to get lost on a symmetrical map if everything looks the same). At this point, I've lit/textured and done a decent amount of detailing to the "blue" side of the map and now I'm starting on the other side. I want to use red brick on the main part of both buildings because I think having red/blue looks a little bit cheesy/too much like TF2? I guess what I'm going for is something more subtle.

So here's the other side of the map, using a similar structure to the blue areas. I've got green brick/plaster in there now and plan to use paint-swatches to ease the harsh transition. I've just started the basic texture/trimming passes on this side of the map today so it's very bare-bones but hopefully these screens help explain what I mean. Green's a little weird, but I'll have to wait and see how it looks with props/more detail before I ditch it.

http://imgur.com/oMTRVFz

http://imgur.com/QQ1Q8ct

http://imgur.com/p73ZVfY

I also ditched the "vent" connector seen in the first layout, felt a little bit out of place.

I've felt really focused working on it lately so hopefully there's alot more to come!

 

Edited by nikkoship

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Some more update screens, finally every area has proper textures/props. Need to tweak lighting, sound, make a radar, and just generally polish things now.

rK9dR3u.jpg

In the distance you can see the bridge between the two buildings I mentioned in an earlier post. Other than this, the layout hasn't really changed. I've tried to tone down the orange a bit in the lighting as well.

 

msZWPJh.jpg

The new sniper hut, elevated so that you can cross underneath it. Messing around with some ground clutter/ceiling stalactites to help the outside area feel more like a cave. Needs some more tweaking though.

 

NieWJ0S.jpg

"Green" area of the map. I've dimmed the lights in the interiors a bit to help it fit the theme/location a bit better.

WvzlAAG.jpg

 

c8IEuyY.jpg

 

cFPXaIc.jpg

File size is still huge, still have to cut down a bit before I can upload a bsp to the workshop.

Edited by nikkoship

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Gah, I feel like I'll never finish this! I'm such a slow mapper, I started this map nearly a year ago now. I feel like I've learned so much though, the next project hopefully won't take nearly as long. Anyways, figured I'd post some of the areas that I've been working on.

Right now alot of the changes are mostly focused on improving the level of detail. I've just been taking screenshots of boring walls/dark corners and then going in the editor to try and shake things up a bit I guess. So most changes are quite underwhelming in the grand scheme of things.

 

This is the side opposite to the "blue" side. The map is symmetrical to an extent - same geometry, different visuals. As said before, copy pasting and flipping everything felt like a cheap way to make a map. I at least want things to look different on each side.

uS7BjrM.jpg

 

Some random background detail

BKzBNix.jpg

I felt like the sniper huts were pretty boring so I've added some more detail to them. I think I will be adding lights on the exterior part of the huts as well.

O0J0rhI.jpg

 I've raised the brightness on the white floodlights, as suggested by Blackdog. Hopefully they help break up some of the orangeness going on.

083dFKs.jpg

I also sort of promised myself I would not add anymore brushes and instead would focus on polishing the details of the map. But being my indecisive self, I decided I liked the idea of old vent connector but I just executed it poorly. I don't think a huge straightaway vent corridor is a very interesting connector, so I'm working in a more spacious connector which will hopefully make for some more interesting gunfights.

These screens are pretty bare-bones but hopefully they show you what I'm going for.

 

3FNAhRH.jpg

 

S3UOn5n.jpg

 

gDexPL4.jpg

Work continues, slowly but surely.

Edited by nikkoship

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I don't have a ton to show off in terms of updates. I'm finishing up detailing the new connector, so very tedious stuff that isn't worth showing till it's closer to being finished. However, I did find an old dropbox folder with the old versions of my map starting from the very first one.

I think progress screenshots are pretty cool, and I got such a nostalgia high walking through the old versions of the map. I thought I might as well post some progress screens for anyone who is interested.

 

 This was the first real version of the map, compiled Feb. of 2015. It's hard to believe it's been over a year. This was my second map in hammer so I was learning new things and incorporating them in along the way. 

tK3civr.jpg

First bit of feedback that I got was that it was too small and there was not enough cover. I started taking the map seriously at this point and wanted to make something that looked good to me. I resized the map for arms race, and figured I might try to get the map into a contest. I used ar_shoots as a guideline for the layout/scale.

xy3DMus.jpg

Map was way too open so I decided to create an interior part of the map.

Clearly still struggling with the visuals of the map.

I4LLsjD.jpg

I think I was playing Skyrim, and I loved how the caves looked so I switched the theme up to be an old soviet base built inside the chamber of a cave instead of a flooded...crateyard? The displacements are .... questionable.

hvWKmAr.jpg

It's... kinda is starting to look like a cave?

qZFHh4W.jpg

I tried the finish the map for a contest over spring break and pretty much sat in a dark room for a week trying to get it ready... but I was too inexperienced with the editor to get it out in time. Most of the interiors were still in dev textures.

AoSZ5PP.jpg

And here's last week's compile. I'm focusing on the interiors right now but I've got some things I'd like to do to the main chamber once I'm through. I think I'd like to redo the ceiling displacement all together to help fit the stalactites in a bit better. I'm also still playing around with lighting a bit. Right now it's at something a bit more neutral (?) instead of being so orange. Still kinda feels a bit dull though, so the lighting in the main chamber is definitely next on my list.

rK9dR3u.jpg

At the end of the day, even if the map does get buried on the workshop - I've learned a ton about mapping in the process. The next project should take way less time and hopefully will be of much higher quality.

More to come later in the week. Hopefully tweaked lighting in the main chamber and detailed connectors.

Edited by nikkoship

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Okay, I think I hit some burnout with the map but I'm back at it after taking a small break.

I've detailed the two new areas that were mentioned in a post above. They could use some more polish, but I think they're generally starting to look okay in-game.

Here are some screens:

pzKJdqG.jpg

SAp7uUK.jpg

sotpUWo.jpg

lLN2s0A.jpg

 

XpDF6Mi.jpg

 

akLt9VS.jpg

GlLIwMi.jpg

AkeGyIg.jpg

^^ Need some info_lighting now that I look at this one! 

 

These areas replace the old straightaway vent connector that you can see in the first layout screenshot here: imgur.com/DSHsibH.jpg

Lot's of work to do in terms of optimization and polishing.

 

Edited by nikkoship

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So the map is more or less complete!

I got soundscapes up and running and a decent amount of variation in the audio in each area. I'm going to try and polish some little details over the next day or two, but in general it's all finished. I'd also like to record some sort of little "trailer" for the map to show some of the gameplay.

I'm also a bit hesitant to release it with all the botting going on in the workshop atm.

I'll probably just keep ctf as the main game mode, and it's been switched from 5v5 to 3v3 as I feel like it was really chaotic with 10 players. 3v3 feels much better imo.

Here's the radar, that I finally got around to doing. Will probably fine tune it but this is where it's at right now.

W0IGrqB.jpg

 

 

New look to the weapon pickups:

ie5oF5t.jpg

 

And some misc. scenes I worked on that I don't think I've shown yet:

Red teleporter room (looks really bright on my new monitor settings, so I'll probably tone it down a bit.):

pyhTXMm.jpg

Blue teleporter entrance (below)

bfSk9sO.jpg

 

(below) And the other side of the same teleporter, with the yellow armor pickup room:

NDyCZIB.jpg

 

So I think I'm gonna name the game mode Arena CTF. If I include more than just CTF (possibly control point/round based elimination game modes), I might call it something more broad like "Arena Strike". Are those dumb names? I'd like to pick something easy to remember as I plan on making more maps for this game mode in the future.

Edited by nikkoship

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