View Full Version : The Making of CTF-Dreary3

3rd Jun 2008, 04:23 AM
Hi everyone, Welcome to my making of dreay3 thread.

Dreary was first created for UT1 back in the days of 1999. Since then there was a remake of dreary made for UT2004.

I made CTF-Safeguard and released it early this year after working on it in my free time after work starting end of November 07. Since finishing it I found myself very bored, I did make a mention of wanting to do a remake back on the WIP thread, where I thought dreary would be a good one to do.. but i guess i thought I wouldn't have time (I really don't but meh, I love mapping)

So I was searching the forums for hoping to find some good maps, When I found this:

It is a beta version of dreary by Syphix, I downloaded it and initially I liked allot, and it inspired me to do my own version also.

I liked the Lightning Idea that Syphix did in his map, and he has allowed me to use this Idea in my map modifying his kismet for my own use. THANKS.


So here is a screen of the shock rifle room, its much bigger then it was in the original, hmmm it looks ok.

Here is a few shot on the room under the shock room being meshed and a final picture of that.

Here Is part of the sniper room by the lifts as a subtract, no meshes. Then a shot meshed.

Here's some pics showing the sniper room being meshed. Allot of planning went into this room, a very long time. It was very depressing when the concept art I did just did not work out, It was originally going to look quite different as i imagined it. But Its turned out ok once I started meshing, and I added a pot as seen in deck that goes around the room, with a nifty light function to do the shadow which is pretty kool.
I subtracted the cellnig allot to fill with details and ad somting a bit diferent.

Here's a shot where the rocket launcher is located, I'm not vary satisfied with the way iv meshed this area, its a but restricting with room on top as I cannot subtract into the celling any more. Unfortunately i didn't take a screen of me making it, I haven't been vary on to it with my screens this time around. I might subtract into the floor to add more details there.

Here is a curved room that links with the rocket room and the main room(not done). again, sorry no shots other then final.
I gota say I love that curved mesh, I added it to safeguard in the latest version, thanks to Syphix for informing me of this mesh

So i have now subtracted the main room with the fans and armour and am going to start some concept art for that, before i begin meshing. this room to me is the icon of this map so im guna do something crazy here, when i know what that is.

Syphix has allowed he to use the kismet that he used to create lightning in the level, I have used this as a reference to my modified version, which sounds more intense and real.. its so kool, But lightning in the level still his idea, and a great one at that.

I'd like to show the concept art iv done but ill have to do this later I don't have access to a camera.

I must admit, tech theme is what I love most and I was quite worried about how i would handle a industrial themed map, but iv been playing allot af hydro and deck to see how epic have been using this mesh set, but now that iv scan the HU package for everything its pretty easy puting it all together.
I estimate im still a month or two. we will see. allot of hydro and deck to get an idea of how epic has used the mesh set. once you know what meshes your guna use its a piece of cake, this in my eyes tops safe guard so far.

Expect this out in a month or two. but for now I hope Iv given you something to look forward to.

3rd Jun 2008, 08:52 AM
that looks really, really good can't wait to have a play.

What is this curved mesh you're on about?

Latent Image
5th Jun 2008, 11:47 PM
that looks really, really good can't wait to have a play.

What is this curved mesh you're on about?


6th Jun 2008, 02:40 AM
The mesh i used in the last pic on the floor, no big deal i guess, but i never knew bout it when makn safeguard when its a great choice for round areas

7th Jun 2008, 10:09 PM
The main rooms are proving to be a hell of a job to mesh, the amount of time I have spent doing concepts and thinking and them looking where to start meshing was doing my head in, I, knew that I wanted to add in some more windows to let the lightning through and I knew how I wanted to do the platforms as it is exactly like the concept I drew. I have no Idea how I'm going to mesh the walls yet but I'm sure ill come up with something when I put pencil to paper..
So here is a image I took of the BSP, I play tested this allot to ensure I got the overall size just right, unfortunately after meshing I feel that I could have used a greater curve on the platforms, O well they are fine how they are.
I looked at the original and liked the team stripe along the platform so I designed the platform around that and tried to make it like the ramps in deck.
And here is A final (so far) rendered shot of the platforms
To help me figure out how Im going to mesh it I started making BSP objects of the original, such as the support under the platform, this also shows some mesh supports I did up to the roof... and I made a basic pipe structure for the upper bridge, this is very basic just to help me imagine where i am going.
Here I have done a basic start to the lower roof with the addition of the windows i wanted.
A shot furter back to show what I have done so far, (in a very basic state)

Update. I have been meshing this map all day, every second since I woke up, still allot to do, but I did some on the pipe beams this and added allot more detail to them, they look pretty kool

7th Jun 2008, 11:40 PM
nice keep up the hard work I appreciate it and i'm sure the rest of the community does too!

8th Jun 2008, 12:44 AM
It's really difficult to tell from the screenshots, but your challenge is going to be taking Dreary - which is a very fine, but cramped UT map - and introducing the gargantuan sized support meshes from UT3 without making the level restrictive.

I'm looking forward to seeing more because I do really like the level.

9th Jun 2008, 12:01 AM
hehe don't worry hall, the original was tiny yes, I have made this one a tad bigger, I don't think it will be constrictive, yet still smaller then the standard or UT2004/Ut3 and closer to ut1 but not really small
So day two of my weekend, (Sunday for me as I work Mondays) so once again iv been meshing this room all day, its crazy, its just so big!!! haha, Im actually starting to be concerned that the amount of meshes that i will end up in this room will be allot, the sniper rifle room has about 700-800 from memory, but im going to be well over 1200 for this room, I am yet to do the walls and have a mesh count of 998, but it still runs quite well so it should be good :) its just mind blowing though.

Someone on the epic forums stated that he thought my progression was helpful. so i thought Id do it again.

in the following shots I have meshed the "structure" underneath the pipe beam. This took me some time, as a lot of time was wasted, changing ideas, until i had something i liked (those shots are not included).

Here I begin, with a basic frame, for the dimensions that I was looking for and aimed to not exceed.
Starting from top to bottom, I added a few things around the door frame, I used those large barrel shaped objects to better capture the blue light coming in though the windows.
this is a bit forward in time now, here I have finished meshing one side and flipped it over to the other side. i have strategically placed the lights by some of the pipes to bring out the details of the more details areas of the structure.
And finally the finished product, with the classic team logo decal from the original. This structure in its finished state used 82 meshes total.
Anyway, still lots to do, best get back to it.

16th Jun 2008, 03:56 AM
Yay Finished (the main room) thought Id show a few final pics.
This room was quite a job on its own due to its size and the amount of detail visible at one time.
Technical info:
A whopping, 1350 meshes in this room alone
208 Lights
comes to 850,000 tris
Despite of these it still runs quite well :) very well in fact on my test machine.
I was concerned about the room once I hit 1000 meshes because I know it is a bottle neck if 900 are visible at one time. So when meshing the walls above the platform I did a trim with one mesh and then one of the guider supports, so nothing special but it still looks good.
So after a test I found only 650 meshes visible at any one point so all is fine :)
Here's a larger picture to see.
And another
And the same view, showing the lighting.

Mr. UglyPants
16th Jun 2008, 10:12 AM

16th Jun 2008, 11:31 AM
I think it would be pretty cool to see some lightning come through the windows every so often :D If not lightning it would still cool to have a bit of blue light coming through the windows casting shadows from the windows on the ground.

16th Jun 2008, 09:30 PM
I think it would be pretty cool to see some lightning come through the windows every so often :D If not lightning it would still cool to have a bit of blue light coming through the windows casting shadows from the windows on the ground.

Its quite dark outside, there is a blue light in the window area, casing some light in, but thats it, im going to add a very faint light cone, but nothing stong, so unless there is a daytime version, no window shadows, but yes, there are lightning bolts outside, and these will cast bright detailed shadows on to the sufraces but the ambiant blueish light outside is too dim.

are you saying a bolt atully coming into the level? hmmm , that would be kool, not sure how I would do that to, you would also have to consider what would happen to the player if he happned to be there at that moment :-S

16th Jun 2008, 11:05 PM
I was talking just about flashes of lightning casting shadows on the level

17th Jun 2008, 05:26 AM
oh yes, it does that already, that's why I added huge windows to this room, trying to get some huge light flashes in this room, because I make my rooms in separate files i don't have any working lightning in this file to see what it would look like, but when I copy it into my primary file and get it working I might post a pic for ya to see the flash.

Mr. UglyPants
17th Jun 2008, 09:32 AM
Oh, i cannot wait to see how that works out.

18th Jun 2008, 07:44 PM
Wow, nice work so far dude, can't wait to play the final version.

Mr. UglyPants
18th Jun 2008, 08:54 PM
Good to hear that meshes won't be too hard on the lower end folks.

I cannot wait to see how it plays.

18th Jun 2008, 09:46 PM
na meshes wont be a problem, and im yet to add my cull distance volume, This does unlike safeguard have dynamic element such as the lightning, which i use a toggleable static light to do this. So performance is not as good as safeguard, but im sure it will be better if not the same as epics maps.. so dont worry about performance, i wont let anything get in the way of that. I spent all night last night just optimizing the lightning lights to reduce the light complexity of the stirike. I will upload a few images of what this looks like so far.
Unfortulitly in effort to keep performance high I was restricted wight lightning in the main room becuase of its size, I was better to use 4 lights, one per window with a small radius it still looks good but sadly not wat I realy wanted but iv done it this way to reduce the ammount of complex lighting involved.
Trust me it still looks good.

19th Jun 2008, 05:38 AM
so here is a few pics as promised to show the lightning effects, you can see the bolts on the image with the flag room but the bolts are not in the file that I made the main room, that's why you do not see them there. ( I actually copied the flag room into the Sniper room file which I have made my lightning in but couldn't be bothered copying the main room at this stage due to the number of assets involved)

19th Jun 2008, 06:30 AM
Looks pretty wicked.

24th Jun 2008, 02:12 AM
Dammit, I just posted my excitement as I thought I finished the actual geometry and meshing but I fully forgot about the room with the shield belt, when I posted that.. O well. Ill still post some update images.. but Im sooo close to finishing, so all i have to do is the room that connects the top paths, that contains the shield and the bio gun, at least from memory I think thats where the bio goes.

Quick update to show my new flag room.

Mr. UglyPants
24th Jun 2008, 02:49 PM
Ya might have to delve back into the map to make sure.

But man, that lightning is going to be soo cool.

27th Jun 2008, 09:58 PM
I would like peoples Opinion, In the centre where the lifts are located, the Singer at this stage is located on the lower level and the health remains on the top level, how do people feel about that. on the origanal, the lower level had neather and both the stinger and helth were on the top level..

Also I have added something that no version of dreay has ever had (thanks to mruglypants who sparked this Idea back in march when we were discussing my thoughts on making dreary) he told me that I would have to add some new route or something of the like to make it a bit more exciting, so I have increased the number of ways the flag runner can return by adding an elevator that will lift the player up to the shock rifle area located just outside the flag room, this will allow the flat carrier to traverse the pipe beams along the top of the map on the way back to base.

Any thoughts on this?

27th Jun 2008, 10:10 PM
I'm all for whatever it is you decide to do with this level. Your prev CTF level is still the best around and so I will just defer to your wisdom.

12th Jul 2008, 09:51 PM
yay done the Bio room, I gave it a test in game, was finny that the FPS was higher then the game menu IU haha funny
anyway, I did this room REAL quick, now that im close to finishing, I didn't need to come up with any new ideas. I used mesh arrangements that I did in other rooms..

I made this room allot bigger then the original, simply because I feel It should be a large room. ummm yeh not allot to say about it. Just hope you like the look.

Here are some shots showing the last area I needed done.
I also updated the Bio room pictures on the other page. Im going to replace these nasty PNGs with JPEGS, as its not easy on dial up users.

Currently testing my final build, before release

13th Jul 2008, 05:46 AM
wah does that mean there's going to be a release today?

13th Jul 2008, 06:17 PM
I have some sad sad news.... and I must say its very upsetting after the amount of work Iv put into the map... there seems to be some performance issues that Iv noticed once I played the map on my sig machine,

First off Iv had to remove the Lightning effects altogether, as It was a HUGE performance hog, reducing frame rates into the 10's sometimes... SO sadly that had do go :(

Edit, Fixed the Studders

PS: map is 65MB

13th Jul 2008, 07:06 PM
good luck optimizing the map then :)

14th Jul 2008, 03:11 AM
At this stage It runs quite well, but at the cost of no lightning... which is quite disappointing.. but I'm sure people will still love it without that... Iv got a few people looking into it... though I don't think there is anything I can do to keep the lightning..

14th Jul 2008, 06:28 PM
You could search for a different way of implementing it. A way that can be easily optimised and doesn't hog system resources.
Or you could find a replacement effect if the level really feels like it is missing out without the light effects.

17th Jul 2008, 06:18 AM
Hi everyone...
Lets put your hands together for DGUNREAL, after I found that my map was unplayable with the lightning I found a solution thanks to DG who showed me what I did wrong, and helped me to understand what the engine was doing when the lightning striked, I already optimized the lightning in most areas but I did not in the main vest rooms, but I have now As im determined to keep it in..

Basically To give a comparison. the total lightmap of my map was 70MB, compare that to deck or hydro of arround 18-20MB so as you can see mine was quite high. This is why my map file was 65MB, thats 20MB more then Hydrosis. So thanks to DG who sugested using allot more light maps and less vertex lightning, After changing a few settings my lightmaps currently 18MB

But Iv been advised to warn those with a low end gaming PC that you will most likly not be able to play this map.. But ill say that if you can play epics most demanding maps then you should be able to play this one.

The thing that will make it dificult for Low end gaming PCs is the ammount of mesh detail that I have put in. to give you a comparison, deck and hydrosis is about 2.25 Million triangles and my map is 6.25 million triangles. I consider my culling volume to be quite aggressive so it will cull allot of this out. But I dont want to change this because this is the level of detail that I wanted and im not going to remove any key meshes.

My testers seem to be running the last version almost just as good as epics maps (which is unfare to be disapointed if it doesnt because it does have better visuals) so anyway I think everyone will be happy to hear they should get an extra 10 - 20 FPS

To give those low to mid range users and Idea:
I make and test this map on a AMD 3500 (939), with 2GB ram and 2x7800gt's SLI, now this PC is quite poor at playing UT, my high settings give me 30-50 FPS in corret and basicly between 30 - 50FPS on most epics maps.
on this PC playing my Map I mainly average in the 45Fps. So in my opinion if you can play epics map - you can play mine

So the good new is at this stage Lightning IS included, but I have taken out my kismet Pot mover which I do not like anymore.

17th Jul 2008, 07:18 AM
So what version do I have? Should I even bother testing it or wait until you send the testers the latest one. Let me know ... I plan to spend time PC gaming on Friday and that's when I'll be testing your level.

17th Jul 2008, 09:59 AM
The thing that will make it dificult for Low end gaming PCs is the ammount of mesh detail that I have put in. to give you a comparison, deck and hydrosis is about 2.25 Million triangles and my map is 6.25 million triangles.
Did you make use of the LOD filters to cut some details out for those who want to play with lower detail settings? You can really help someone gain a lot of more extra fps with this...

Mr. UglyPants
17th Jul 2008, 01:38 PM
Poor pots, they will be missed.

18th Jul 2008, 08:20 AM
So what version do I have? Should I even bother testing it or wait until you send the testers the latest one. Let me know ... I plan to spend time PC gaming on Friday and that's when I'll be testing your level.
Its not easy for me to upload so that version you have is the only version ill distribute for testing, I wouldn't even call it testing, I think that's something I can do myself, I gave that file out early as a thanks to those who have supported me and also too get game play related feedback. so sorry Anuban ull have to work with what you have got, No tester so far has found a "bug" even though I know of several in that file (fixed already) the feed back im looking for exsample "lifts are to slow" that's what im after.

Did you make use of the LOD filters to cut some details out for those who want to play with lower detail settings? You can really help someone gain a lot of more extra fps with this...

not as yet, only on transparency any effects.. but ill look into it for meshes also

Poor pots, they will be missed.
Did you see the shadow (light function) that I made special for that... work wasted.. :( o well, its just gota do.. Ill leave the trackes in though.. they look kool :)