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The little mapmaking thread

Discussion in Mapping Discussion started by Trond, Dec 3, 2013

  1. Jul 20, 2012
    Posts
    So instead of me making hundreds of threads with one question in each about anything I want to know about Hammer and mapmaking, or anyone else who wants to, can post in this thread.

    Ask questions
    Small chat
    Post tips
    Show your work (prefab, texture, model, anything relevant)
    Give us your tutorials (level changing, boss fights, something complex or new)

    Just dump what you have in this thread, small or large, for other mapmakers to see, learn about or to get inspiration from.

    Tutorials

    Other

    Optimization

    Tools

    Proxy

    Particles

    Prefabs

    Show off

    ZE Maps

    Dimensions (grids)

    Velocity

    Additional game parameters in Hammer
    -novid +sv_cheats 1 +sv_lan 1 +mp_freezetime 0 +mp_buytime 5 +mp_flashlight 1 +mp_startmoney 16000 +mp_roundtime 9
    Instead of -novid you can edit/make startupvids.txt in /cstrike/media/ and write media/ in it.

    Tutorials in other languages:

    Any problems here please let me know so I can fix.

    My first question will be about what I can not put out in the void. Like a chopper coming to save us in a ZE map. Just starting from outside the map, not flying or stopping outside the map in the void. Is there anything that can't be out in the void completely or partly that will bug or lag the map?
    • Good Idea Good Idea x 3
    • Informative Informative x 1
      Trond, Dec 3, 2013 Last edited by Trond, Nov 13, 2015
    • Apr 3, 2013
      Posts
      Everything needs to be inside the map. If it's outside in the void, then things happen.
    • May 31, 2012
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      Everything has to be inside the map so the VISibility nodes can be computed. They are important because, had they not been compiled, you won't compile lighting bounces and, more importantly, you will render everything. Source uses BSP for visibility, which comes (in games) from Quake. You can read about how it works in depth here: https://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Visibility_optimization (don't even bother about optimization yet).
      • Wizard! Wizard! x 1
      • Feb 27, 2012
        Posts
        Most of the time you can have models stick through your map and into the void, but it's better to just put it going through a solid brush or small box to avoid problems. If you have anything random out in the void, hammer will not render it. It could be random brush work, but if there is no possibly way to a room/section of the map, hammer won't render it at all.

        For example, the large empty brick box outside of my map here. If i don't have a spawn point, info_player_start, or a teleport destination in there, it'll render the map without it.
        [IMG]

        You're better off to just not have it there if you don't need it anyway.

        But, i am pretty sure with for example ATIX, you can have a model fly from a box all the way through the void and into your map. For example...
        [IMG]

        Lastly, you can have whatever is on the outside of your map textured whatever. It doesn't have to be nodraw or toolssky if it is touching the void. It's better to have it whatever texture you are working with so you don't get lost in a sea of yellow when looking for a specific part of your map (especially when the map starts getting really complicated) I have quite a bit of nodraw on the outside, but that's just out of habit and i know where each part is by the little bits that are textured. Now, i AM NOT saying to not use nodraw, because you definitely should always use it.
      • Jul 20, 2012
        Posts
        I always use Nodraw first and texture it afterward I have shaped it. I have also learned about Visgroups so it won't all look like a big messy maze. I see you have 3d skybox instead of nodraw, it doesn't matter since it is a 3d skybox in some way?
      • Feb 27, 2012
        Posts
        Not sure what you mean exactly. But if you're asking why i have skybox on the outside instead of nodraw, it really doesn't matter. You can treat the skybox texture just like nodraw when you are using it as well, meaning you can build an entire brush with all faces as the skybox tool material and don't have to nodraw some sides of it.
      • Feb 24, 2011
        Posts
        Neat!


        Visgroups left a bad taste in my mouth after predator. When your map starts to get really big and messy bad things just might happen to your vmf. Most of my stuff in predator got deleted due to the visgroups messing up on me back in the day, luckily i had a somewhat old backup in there, though i had to recreate a big part of the map.
        Nowadays i never ever use visgroups. I simply select all the parts i want to currently work on and press ctrl+H. It makes my life easier as a mapper beyond belief.


        That's just a normal skybox texture. You can use the skybox texture instead of nodraw in areas you want to render the sky.
        A 3D skybox though makes a selected smaller area look way bigger in the sky. It's like an illusion, kinda. This is used to make maps look really big and vast without actually having to make actual huge areas, instead you can make a 1024x1024 unit skybox "room" with a sky_camera entity in it, with all the surroundings and whatnot and project it in the sky X times bigger (16 by default).
        I hope i didn't confussle your nussles there.
        • Wizard! Wizard! x 1
        • Jan 11, 2011
          Posts
          NoDraw doesn't emit light. Skybox does emit the Light_Enviroment light. If something is going to be sky, use sky, not Nodraw (on the visibile faces that will show the sky from the players point of view).
          Also, I think you won't see the Skybox/3DSkybox on Nodraw faces unless you are loading a skybox texture somewhere else.
          • Agree Agree x 1
          • Jul 20, 2012
            Posts
            What about compiling a test map? When using Visgroups to unselect, those won't be in the compiled test map.

            I might have a question later on about 3D Skybox, because the 1st tutorial I saw doesn't give the detailed answer about how to place things on the map and then get them into a 3D Skybox instead of placing stuff outside the map in the 3D Skybox right away. Like Fapescape has some bricks on a wall like a lego castle, those are not in the map, but in the 3D Skybox. But perhabs the next tutorial I'm gonna see answers that.
            Post Merged, Dec 3, 2013
            How do I see how big a grid is in Hammer, and how do I change it to the smallest number (1)?

            Solution: http://www.tophattwaffle.com/hammer-tutorial-50-d-perfectly-lining-up-3d-skyboxes/

            Solution: My keybinds don't work with resizing, but they can be found on the toolbar, and the size states clearly down to the right :wink:
            Trond, Dec 3, 2013 Last edited by Trond, Dec 25, 2013
          • Jul 20, 2012
            Posts
            Is there a way to zoom in all 3 grid windows onto something instead of 1 window at a time?

            Found the solution:

            Hold Ctrl key in and mousescroll.

            Adding:

            Ctrl + E, also helpful when zooming into something.
            Trond, Dec 4, 2013 Last edited by Trond, Dec 6, 2013
          • Jul 20, 2012
            Posts
            Just sharing a tip here.

            When you have something selected and you want to change camera angle, so instead of clicking Camera and lose your selected items you can use WASD keys, and hold in SPACE and hold in LEFT or RIGHT mouse button.
          • Apr 9, 2012
            Posts
            The only occasions where I could have something outside of the void during gameplay is by an animated model, for example on SSBB the final boss goes from way outside of the skybox to the other side outside the sskybox. Funny this is that it always gets rendered even whe crossing the skybox walls.

            And, you can NOT have a model outside of the void. This is a misconception. The bounding box of a model may cross the void (the yellow box if you have visibiliy limits within hammer) but as soon as one single vertex of a model crosses the void, it's over
          • Apr 3, 2013
            Posts
            You mentioned grid sizes. Use a large one and if you want to detail a wall, use a small one.
          • Jul 20, 2012
            Posts
            Autosize 4 windows Ctrl+A doesn't work for me.

            Edit: Works fine. But now Shift+Z troubled a bit, and works fine again. Lol.
            Trond, Dec 4, 2013 Last edited by Trond, Dec 7, 2013
          • Mar 8, 2013
            Posts

            the [ and ] buttons for changing grid size don't work for me (probably due to non-American keyboard layout), but Alt + A and Alt + S do. these are by far my most commonly used hotkeys in Hammer. I can't imagine using the toolbar every time I need to change the grid resolution.

            the camera button is also completely redundant. don't use it; it'll just slow down your work rate. to move the camera, simply use WASD and the arrows keys while your mouse pointer is over the 3D view.
            • Agree Agree x 1
            • Feb 27, 2012
              Posts
              If you press Z while on the 3D view, it will lock on and you can use your mouse to steer the 3D view.

              also @Trond you should almost never EVER need to use a grid size of 1. always stick with 32,16, and if you're doing doorways, i like to go 8. If you're going lower, it should just be for little details. Making walls, floors, stairs, anything in a grid of 1 can end up making bad things happen (like a 1 unit leak into the void, brushes that don't line up, etc) I think the lowest i've gone on the current map i am working on is a unit of 8 (which really messed with stuff later down the line), other than that everything is 16, 32, or 64 units.
              • Like Like x 1
              • Jul 20, 2012
                Posts
                Right now I can't remember why I wanted to go 1, but I haven't been lower than 4 thus far.
              • Jul 20, 2012
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                Why does it matter making a map ledge on ledge instead of brush on brush as long as it is made of Nodraw?
              • Mar 8, 2013
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                the compiler/engine doesn't care. it's just for your own sanity as a mapper.
              • Jul 20, 2012
                Posts
                Now I remember why I would go to 1. If I had lots of props like pillars I would make them not touch the roof or floor by having a 1 grid space so the map doesn't lag.