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What are you working on for Duke right now?  "Post about whatever Duke related stuff you're doing"

User is offline   Sangman 

#9361

View Postck3D, on 23 May 2020 - 08:41 AM, said:

I don't think he did 'rotate' it, there's a diagonal version of that texture (two, actually, IIRC) in the original .art (see: Freeway) which I'm assuming is what he's using.


Oh right. Been a while since I looked at vanilla textures :D
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User is offline   ck3D 

#9362

View PostMerlijn, on 23 May 2020 - 08:53 AM, said:

Thanks for your feedback ck3d, glad you like it! Your map sounds really interesting, having a diagonal/uphill layout is pretty unique for Duke.
EDIT: also, an hour of gameplay? wow!


Yeah the map has a lot of terrain to cover on not just the horizontal but also the vertical axis, there's quite a lot of SOS action going on with multiple layers of level in parts that don't really translate over to 2D mode. Also the scale will allow the implementation of some quite epic firefights, which I reckon alone should take the player quite some time, as well as some puzzles, scripted sequences and various exploration tasks to make sure the player covers most of the available ground.

One thing I haven't mentioned so far is I'm trying to stay close to the ratio of secret places per map the original maps used here, too. So as my maps for this get bigger, the number of secrets in them grows exponentially too. I haven't tagged them all in both maps yet, but I'm comfortable estimating that they have between 15 and 20 each (I might retcon some of those areas into non-secret sections though), I kinda want to create a little universe the exploration fans would yearn to move into to if that makes sense (going by my own recollections of playing Duke 64 as a kid and trying to get everywhere in sight with the Jetpack on God mode).
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User is offline   pmw 

#9363

View PostMerlijn, on 22 May 2020 - 12:03 PM, said:

Looking good ck3d! I can tell from the screenshot that the scale is going to be pretty big.

I'm still making solid progress with my map, so I decided to show a bit more.
This shows the fallen building in it's context with the map. You can also see hints of alien infestation and alien growth taking over human structures.
This theme will show up more in this level, indicating you're getting closer to the source.

Attachment duke0089.png



I like this one. Are you using TROR or doing tricks with the original engine? Any ETA for the map?
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User is offline   Merlijn 

#9364

View Postpmw, on 23 May 2020 - 02:31 PM, said:

I like this one. Are you using TROR or doing tricks with the original engine? Any ETA for the map?


Thanks! No TROR involved, just using sectors and spritework to create the illusion of actual 3D space.

I don't know when the map will be finished, I'm making good progress but there are no deadlines. :)
I'm currently at 1378 sectors and 10351 walls. Map should be done by July/August.
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#9365

WOW that's beautiful Merlijn!
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User is offline   ck3D 

#9366

Worked on my section for CBP 2020 today and already built 1100 walls out of the 2000 allocated per person. Having something simple to go nuts with is really fun in addition to being good general practice, plus I'm kind of happy with the levels of funk the results are showing so far. I'm glad the format is what it is too, so I'm not tempted to develop the 'level' into something too ambitious and can tackle map 3 of my project soon (in the meantime I'm still mentally planning it out, so focusing on something different right now is perfect flow). On the other hand, now I'm tempted to expand the concept I'm using into something bigger sometime. Would love to post screenshots but it's not just my map and I suspect it shouldn't drop in too long anyway so no real need for spoilers (also really looking forward to discovering everybody else's contributions).

This post has been edited by ck3D: 27 May 2020 - 05:51 PM

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User is online   Mark 

  • Honored Donor

#9367

I was browsing my posts in this thread from way back in 2010-2012. I found this pic. Back then I posted a bunch of these while working on my projects. This was from an early version of the Blood bonus map in my Graveyard TC.

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  • Attached Image: funtest2.jpg

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#9368

Posted Image
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User is offline   Sanek 

#9369

A quick update on where I am with my map right now.
Unfortunately, I made zero progress over the last 30 days. It doesn't mean that I didn't do anything - I made several versions of what I wanted but it just doesn't work so I deleted all of it.
What I wanted to make is a jungle-themed map that also have a city, camp and cave sections. Jungle serves as a hub area. I quicky realised that with layout like this the map is just too big for it's own good, so I changed the layout a little bit. Now there's a city as a hub area, with jungle on the edges of it. For the last 2 weeks I desperately tried to make it like this, since I made that trees area that I showed you. There's lots of issues with the height of buildings and trees and rocks, so I just gave up in the end and was forced to delete the trees section that I tried to "save" all this time.

Now I came up with a better idea. Instead of a city, it's more like a village/suburbia now, with rocks around it (maybe some trees if I'll have enough space for it) and every building is like 2-3 story high. I'm looking at Red series as the example of village maps done right.
I hope things'll go much faster know, when I know what to do. It's a part of a mapping process I guess - after all, I suppose you all had situations like this, when you don't like the area and delete it (please don't tell me you do everything with a first try!).

@Mister Sinister Looks very Doom-y to me! :)

This post has been edited by Sanek: 02 June 2020 - 08:48 AM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9370

I actually do mostly map first try, but that's because I don't touch the editor before envisioning the complete universe of the map in my head - I actually refrain myself from touching it until the scope of ideas develops to that stage, otherwise I know I'll end up in the same low points I used to be in as a kid when you're just staring at the grid and trying to improvise the level at random with nothing to say. Theme switch sounds pretty drastic, here it sounds like you had an idea of the type of terrain/style you wanted to design, but not so much of the whole story that you wanted the level to tell. So in a way, because you didn't wait for ideas to gather, they're doing it now and it seems like you have to rearrange what you've already made to the rhythm at which they come.

The only time I can remember deleting then rebuilding something recently was a dozen of cars in one map I've made. I had built one early on (prior to the level finding its specific style) that I had copy-pasted everywhere with palette alterations, then while wrapping up the level they just kept bugging me because they stuck out like sore thumbs. So I had to kick myself in the ass and go ahead and delete every single old car, make a new one that worked better and then make altered copies of that one again. Some of them were under different layers of SOS in 2D mode too. One of those situations that really isn't too bad, but the lazy and paranoid part of one's self always feels like postponing if not straight up overlooking (bad trait).

Occasionally I'll delete attempts at effects that go wrong or just revert back to an earlier version of the map before I implemented them, but the basic concept of a level (regardless of the theme, which is essentially just a costume) and its barebones 2D layout are already part of the plans before I fire up the editor, otherwise it'd be like trying to use a drill in the desert.

This post has been edited by ck3D: 03 June 2020 - 03:49 AM

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User is offline   Sanek 

#9371

Do you really have every piece of the map in your head before you start mapping? I believe we already discussed it before, when I said that I have the general idea of a map and it's key areas, but have trouble with everything in-between. In case of my WIP map, I know where everything should be but when I actually start doing something, everything goes not as planned. It's like you imagined that you'll make work of art but it looks more like kid's drawings in reality. I can see the player going down the street, looking at various buildings and cliffs in the distance, but i just can't visualise it in the editor. I guess I should really follow your tip and memorise the whole map in my head before making anything. I wanted to make a Red-like map which means it'll take a lot of time, but what i have done so far looks more like Winterfall. Perhaps I'll make the map smaller than intented yet keep the layout intact to keep things easier to plan!

It's kinda sad that I never mastered the planning aspect of mapping for all these years. Despite some obvious design progress I still make maps like I did 10 years ago, when I just doing what turns out and only tentatively follow map's "legend".
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User is offline   ck3D 

#9372

View PostSanek, on 03 June 2020 - 06:57 PM, said:

Do you really have every piece of the map in your head before you start mapping? I believe we already discussed it before, when I said that I have the general idea of a map and it's key areas, but have trouble with everything in-between. In case of my WIP map, I know where everything should be but when I actually start doing something, everything goes not as planned. It's like you imagined that you'll make work of art but it looks more like kid's drawings in reality. I can see the player going down the street, looking at various buildings and cliffs in the distance, but i just can't visualise it in the editor. I guess I should really follow your tip and memorise the whole map in my head before making anything. I wanted to make a Red-like map which means it'll take a lot of time, but what i have done so far looks more like Winterfall. Perhaps I'll make the map smaller than intented yet keep the layout intact to keep things easier to plan!

It's kinda sad that I never mastered the planning aspect of mapping for all these years. Despite some obvious design progress I still make maps like I did 10 years ago, when I just doing what turns out and only tentatively follow map's "legend".


I usually have the basic idea for the layout, which is the general shape of the level in 2D mode but also in 3D mode (considering the vertical axis - I know how flat or steep I want the gameplay area to be), as well as the general progression (which parts of the layout should be accessed in which order, in a way that complements the structure of the blueprint with interconnections or at least some logic, e.g.. to avoid unnecessary backtracking and other undesired gameplay elements).

Sometimes I do get ideas for individual design elements for a specific level, but I don't start actually drawing them before I have gathered enough of those theme-related ideas to know how, where and when they should be placed and should perform in the map. That includes all the strategic locations, all the more or less strongly sub-themed, recognizable hot spots, the enclosed vs. open spaces depending on what scenario I feel like should come into play, the main puzzles and probably more fundamentals on that level.

What I do improvise is the look of everything, playing with textures, lighting/shading, trimming, palettes and all is fun but past a certain point those considerations are essentially cosmetic, obviously they're crucial to immersion and atmosphere but they shouldn't get in the way of the structure of a good barebones level. Different themes by definition follow different codes but form follows function, for instance one should make a space map because they feel like making big open areas and interesting sector effects, not because they want to use a different set of tiles than they're used to when the design style they're going for with the layout is more typical of the one of a city map with smaller-sized corridors, blockier dead-ends and micro nooks and crannies for instance.

Maybe you're tempted to follow what other people have done before exactly because of that lack of scope - you want to make maps but you don't know how to handle your inspiration being naturally hit or miss (just as much as the next guy's), so you keep insisting even though you're running dry (so for the lack of anything new you either repeat yourself, or what you've seen somewhere else). But sometimes one gets better at something by marking a pause from all the noise and that's when original ideas start coming from within.

I totally know what you mean by envisioning something grand in your head then being unable to reproduce it, I've been there before, even sometimes catching dreams about the stuff I would have liked to build - what my levels should have ideally looked like as I envisioned them, vs. the poor reality of what they actually looked like that I'd then face upon waking up. But that's not a matter of absolute ability, just of a mix of technique and perspective. The more free you'll break from 'bored' mapping all the while letting original ideas come from both everything around you and within, the further you'll naturally bridge that gap.

This post has been edited by ck3D: 03 June 2020 - 07:40 PM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9373

Can't edit so double posting, but re-reading this:

View PostSanek, on 03 June 2020 - 06:57 PM, said:

In case of my WIP map, I know where everything should be but when I actually start doing something, everything goes not as planned. It's like you imagined that you'll make work of art but it looks more like kid's drawings in reality. I can see the player going down the street, looking at various buildings and cliffs in the distance, but i just can't visualise it in the editor.


Maybe you should analyze what the differences are between your vision and your results when in such situations. I know it can be pretty hard to pinpoint and intellectualize, as the representation can be pretty abstract. But here for instance with your example of a street scenery, in reality there is literally no reason why it should look different from how you're picturing it - it's just a matter of actually putting in the work, trying and understanding new things - both theoretically and practically - that can help make or break a map, and never settling for anything mediocre according to your own standards.

Maybe you're too focused on the idea of producing at all costs, when you would find more freedom and comfort in just enjoying the ride and letting the inspiration come to you (without making a move until it's really knocking on your door with a detailed warrant).

This post has been edited by ck3D: 04 June 2020 - 04:42 AM

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User is online   Mark 

  • Honored Donor

#9374

Not everyone has a well developed "mind's eye" to picture details ahead of time. Or the patience to plan ahead. Thats me on both counts. ;) My fore-planning usually consists of browsing the web for a few inspiration pics and then just start mapping and see where it leads. As it starts to take shape I then think what might look good to go along with the existing architecture and add it right away. Maybe I don't like it and remove it. So other than saying to myself its going to be a large open cemetary with underground areas and cool looking models I don't plan ahead. Gameplay elements are usually the last thing on my mind. I love the building part. I'm not among the best or most efficient mappers out here but this style works for me. Its mostly about having fun.

This post has been edited by Mark: 04 June 2020 - 06:05 AM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9375

This is totally a digression and not meant to be a direct reaction to what you said - different people have different levels of 'mind's eye' depending on their own personal stage of creative development, but it's a skill I believe everyone is able to develop naturally. That's why I tend to be doubtful of the good ol' artistic mind vs. scientific mind argument - both are two different yet complementary ways of reading one same existence, then to which extents a person develops one and the other is dictated by focus and in the end, the overlap is absolute anyway so it's technicalities. I think a lot of people's artistic perspectives are shut down first thing by their own disbelief in their abilities, so they only ever try so much, resulting in a consequential waste of creative potential in this world including the personal fulfillment that comes with it, confused individuals, and a society that's darker than it needs to be. So when I see a creative spark in someone, I usually try to feed it, especially if they obviously need support.

Description of my functioning sounds tedious on paper but that's because I had to verbalize it. The whole process is natural for me, ideas just come and stack up and the maps come out when they're ready, except now they're just better (as in more cohesive with and representative of my vision, even if I'm still not quite there yet). It's not so much planning ahead as it is spending periods of time just spontaneously gathering more and more ideas. I'm definitely having more fun working like this than I used to as a kid sitting in front of the editor and doodling rooms at random - whenever I fire up the editor I always have something exciting in mind to build. Thinking about it, maybe this is more of a direct consequence of my time management habits than much of a conscious workflow, meaning that when mapping time does happen then it has to be optimally efficient, but either way it helps me tremendously.

This post has been edited by ck3D: 04 June 2020 - 06:57 AM

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User is online   Mark 

  • Honored Donor

#9376

Time management doesn't enter the equation for me. Even before I retired. I lived my life of debauchery and then settled down ( but stayed single ) around the time I started modding. I have had all the time I needed and more so its not a factor in my mapping process. But something that does affect my mapping is that I generally use custom assets, many made by me along with custom con code. So the maps will reflect if I have the ambition to create assets I need or not. Again its not really planned ahead of time in most cases.

This post has been edited by Mark: 04 June 2020 - 07:41 AM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9377

I see - you have a different scope altogether of working with the game than I do. I really mostly focus on user maps and not so much on the creation or modification of its assets, whereas you rely on more techniques (texture creation, coding) to create your own universe than just raw levels and, in a way, are far less restricted than I am in terms of possibilities. There is just no real reason for you to obsess over level design in particular because in your case it's not the only course on your menu. The amount of thought I put into my maps, you put it into a larger picture.

Life of debauchery actually sounds like one great source of inspiration!
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User is online   Mark 

  • Honored Donor

#9378

it is :lol: But it didn't work out so good for Duke. Look at what he's doing after saving the world and living the good life. Packed on a few pounds and bartends in some dive.

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  • Attached Image: debauchery.jpg
  • Attached Image: duke bar.jpg


This post has been edited by Mark: 04 June 2020 - 09:05 AM

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User is offline   Sanek 

#9379

I decided to follow ck3d method of making barebones layout of a map and what do you know, it become much easier to make map after this!
You see, whenever I do something in map, I'm doing it step-by-step, making one part of the map and then move to the next one. Things ofthen go not as planned, which results in frustration and stuff. However, I made the barebones layout of the city right now - just squares and roads. Sounds very simple but it actually helped me a lot, since I don't have to keep the overall layout of the ctiy in mind, which would clash with other parts otherwise. I'm messing up with the visuals right now so thank you man!
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User is online   Mark 

  • Honored Donor

#9380

Whatever works best for you, go for it. I still prefer the map as you go approach. If I was to make the general layout and then change my mind later about a certain area, the map may be beyond the point of being possible to accomodate that change. But I'll admit there are pros for the general layout approach like in the example of a city block with buildings and streets. Or whats-his-name's large open terrain map in the thread a few weeks back. But I don't want to accidently box myself in.

This post has been edited by Mark: 04 June 2020 - 05:25 PM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9381

View PostMark, on 04 June 2020 - 05:25 PM, said:

If I was to make the general layout and then change my mind later about a certain area, the map may be beyond the point of being possible to accomodate that change.


I understand the concern but honestly, that doesn't happen (to me at least). If anything, it's really easier to be able to manipulate empty areas around the more advanced portions of the level if need be, than it is to rearrange a sum of such advanced (when not finalized) portions that are already assembled together by design. Also in most cases, if something goes wrong and you realize you no longer like how you designed part of the layout, the format makes it easy to just insert and/or move a number of vertices without real consequences, or you can even remove the sectors altogether and then copy-paste the empty template for that unsatisfying section from an earlier save in, to redesign it from scratch with the tweaks that you want.

Both methods aren't mutually exclusive, too. Mapping as you go is fun as well - it's all I did for a long time and to this day for some specific level sections I still do it, plus sometimes you just kind of have to. Whatever works!
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User is offline   quakis 

#9382

Mapping as I go had always been a struggle in the past, but stubbornly stuck with that process for the longest time before forcing a significant change to my overall mapping mentality while working on The Flaming Shipwreck (late 2014?). I think dabbling in Wolf3D mapping and having a "complete" layout to work with for Done & Dusted also contributed toward the idea of this eventual shift.

Beside the odd visual experimentation in particular areas, I don't focus too heavily on design from the start any more and lean favourably toward blocking out the majority of what I have in mind before the first design pass even begins. This makes significant changes less daunting and I'm not wasting time on something that may not be working right now. There must always be a start point and end goal figured out sooner than later, with several progression milestones and other ideas roughed out along the way so that a "playable" level begins to form. My current workflow is very iterative, I go through variations of structure, positioning and layout changes before settling on something that works for me and the level as a whole. Eventually, everything else slowly falls into place. The main struggle comes when I can't piece together the flow or gameplay in a specific segment, but that's why having breaks help immensely. It feels refreshing coming back having separated myself from the work.

This post has been edited by quakis: 05 June 2020 - 01:37 AM

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User is offline   ck3D 

#9383

Started map 3 of my episode today. It's not much so far, just a couple of hundred walls, I've mostly been constructing the exteriors of one big central building (I can't wait to make the interiors too), but I'm feeling inspired for all the rest and most importantly, starting a fresh level feels nice after what felt like half a year spent on map 2 (much longer than I wish it had taken) especially as architecturally speaking it's going to be very different, and more fun to make. Spare time is just about to become hit or miss again, but at least I've got a clean canvas.

This post has been edited by ck3D: 06 June 2020 - 03:26 PM

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User is offline   Sanek 

#9384

Here's some actual screenshots from my map (I'm sorry about the forest!)

Just like I suspected, it looks more Winterfall than Red but hey, this style of mapping suits me well so i'll stick with it. I'm finally making some progress, adding something every day. :)
Attached Image: Scptr0009.png Attached Image: Scptr0010.png
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User is online   Ninety-Six 

#9385

I get more of a Rural Nightmare vibe, personally, albeit without the darkness
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User is offline   ck3D 

#9386

Really cool, Sanek!
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User is offline   Maarten 

#9387

Neat shots in here!

------

Time to show you all a bigger part of my map and what it's all about :) Been mapping on this one since January.

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  • Attached Image: Woudrich june.png


This post has been edited by Maarten: 09 June 2020 - 12:18 PM

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User is online   Gambini 

#9388

lovely rooftops!!
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User is offline   ck3D 

#9389

Amazing cityscape, Maarten. Loving how you're going in strong with the recreation of a real-world town (I actually looked it up on Wikipedia earlier to get an approximation of its size, and suddenly it made sense that the whole place could be recreated in Duke). Loving little bits of detail like those towers on the far left. I'm especially looking forward to that piece because conceptually it really resonates with what I'm also currently trying to do, and in general your style applied to that focus on recreating a real place I think will turn out to be particularly interesting.
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User is offline   Sanek 

#9390

@Maarten I was looking at the picture thinking "how damn big Shaky Ground 3 is for cryin' out loud", then I looked at the user's name and felt quite embarrassed. :unsure:
I agree that it look lovely, instantly recognisable as the old european town of some kind.


And here's another shot from my map with a couple of, umm, references. ;)


Attached Image: Scptr0011.png
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