1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Two Factor Authentication is now available on BeyondUnreal Forums. To configure it, visit your Profile and look for the "Two Step Verification" option on the left side. We can send codes via email (may be slower) or you can set up any TOTP Authenticator app on your phone (Authy, Google Authenticator, etc) to deliver codes. It is highly recommended that you configure this to keep your account safe.

UT3 VCTF-HangingGardens[Pics][PC][PS3]

Discussion in 'Content Releases' started by _N_, May 17, 2009.

  1. _N_

    _N_ addicted to mapping

    Joined:
    May 23, 2008
    Messages:
    233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Name:VCTF-HangingGardens
    Release Version:1.1

    Compatibility: Made with Patch 2.1. PS3 version is available.

    Description:

    Hey everyone,

    _N_ here first. As you can see, this map is a collaboration between myself and Andrew Czarnietzki. Whereas I had experience with UT3 and its gameplay but limited modelling skill, Andrew, on the other hand, is tremendously experienced in modelling, but had limited experience with UT3’s gameplay. It seemed like a perfect match, so we teamed up to create a new and interesting map for everyone:

    VCTF-HangingGardens

    Note: High resolution screenshots are available on the pureLIGHT website under the "Desktop" tab.
    [​IMG]

    In terms of Gameplay (my focus on this map) as with previous maps, I wanted the map to be based on a solid VCTF foundation, but with a few new gameplay innovations for players to experience as well. The map has a tight, VCTF-Kargo kind of feel to it where there is a balance of areas for both vehicular combat and foot combat. While the map description says it's ideal for 12-24 players, it's still quite scalable to 32 players due to the many areas to explore and possible flag routes to take.

    [​IMG]

    In terms of new dynamics, we first came up with the idea of force-fields throughout the map to change flag routes, which eventually turned into the energy bridges that could be turned on and off as a way to dynamically spoil a flag-carrier's route and forcing him to re-plan on the spot. Locking flag carriers out of the bridge controls was developed later as a great way to force flag carriers to be a little more clever with their escape plans. However, it also had the added advantage of promoting teamwork because the lock-out can be overcome if a friendly teammate were to activate the bridge for you instead. In general, the goal was to reward planning, creativity, and teamwork to help make a flag capture (though you can still go all Rambo-style if you want : ).

    [​IMG]

    Originally, we had the idea that destructible environmental objects (breakable glass in particular) might make for some cool visuals and player interaction. After playing with it in the BSP prototype version of the map, though, it quickly became clear that this had enormous potential as a fun and interesting gameplay mechanic too! After much gameplay testing it eventually ended up as a key feature of the map. Sure, gibbing the flag carrier is fun, but shooting out the glass floor or deactivating the energy bridge under his feet sending him to fall to his doom (or perhaps into the waiting claws of a teammate's scorpion claws) is somehow just as satisfying, if not more so. While getting out-dueled by an opponent is annoying, getting outsmarted by an opponent truly gets one's blood boiling! : D

    Some important points to note:

    Control panels near the bridges activate by getting close to them. To disable a bridge, simply shoot it's control panel display, or press the "USE" key from a short distance, and it will shut down (great way to stop a flag carrier escape, or clear a bridge of enemies before reactivating it and safely crossing yourself : ). When an enemy takes your flag, your security bridges will shut down automatically to try to keep him from escaping, and he will be locked out of the bridge controls as long as he holds the flag.

    While it may seem like the underside has only a single exit, look carefully. With a gun and some jump boots, you can "make" yourself an exit to the centre of the map. It also serves as a stealthy way to sneak into the enemy base, just watch your step!.

    The upper support structures that keep this facility Hanging from the cliff are not just to look at. With some exploration, and skillful jumping/impact hammer jumps (or a manta, if you like) you can use it as a daring flag route. Be careful not to get shot off though, there' isn't exactly a lot of cover up there, and it's a long way down ; ).

    The middle fountain, isn't just for looks either, there's few pickups on it too accessible via jump boots, scorpion self-destruct, mantas and hammer-jumps. Explore the level thoroughly to try to find all the tucked-away powerups that will help you on your way.

    [​IMG]

    While the upper walkways are mostly safe from vehicles, watch out for mantas but also for scorpions from below that may shoot out the glass at your feet to drop you to their level. Also, scorpions can get to the second floor via the station in the middle. Try to catch them on the glass or energy bridges if this happens ; ).

    The back of the fountain may seem like a quick flag carrier route, but be careful, strong currents can make it dangerously slow to get across, and you'll be a sitting duck while you navigate the current. The hoverboard might be a bit faster across the water as it's not affected by the current, but that naturally carries its own large set of risks.

    Be sure to try out the map with both Greed and Titan!

    Anyways, I'll turn it over to Andrew now to touch on the visuals of the map.

    Andrew Czarnietzki:

    Greetings, everyone! I have to say I've been a long time fan of the Unreal Game Engine. What seems like an age ago, I started making hacky little mods for something now called "Unreal1", and have since built a professional career and company around what is really more of the same work (if only on a much different scale!). While I love my company, we're in the Serious Games sector - which is great fun in its own right, but there is a notable lack of rocket launchers in this field. The chance to combine my graphics and Unreal experience with _N_'s gameplay / design experience was far too good an opportunity to pass up. While I am looking forward to having evenings again, building this map has been a lot of fun - may you enjoy playing it as much as we did making it.

    Regarding the graphics, I hope that when you open this map you notice that there is something unusual about the lighting. The lighting in this map is provided by a lightmapping toolset called pureLIGHT, which I helped design and produce over the last few years of my professional life. We have recently spun pureLIGHT off for use in the games industry - for more information about pureLIGHT, please visit the pureLIGHT website:www.purelighttech.com

    [​IMG]

    Besides the lighting, I also hope you enjoy the various visuals details in this map. The visuals here draw from many inspirations (Sid Mead's style of design, 70s science fiction in general, my own background in abstract sculpture). A goal of mine at the start of this project was to create something unique; something that would out against the other UT3 maps as well as most games in general.

    [​IMG]

    I wanted to go with architecture that is both open and light, while still providing interesting cover and forms for gameplay. (I have had some great skate-park moments in this map with hover-board and vehicle alike!). I also tried to balance curves and organic shapes against hard edges, hopefully making the environment feel more like a real structure than random organic shapes.

    [​IMG]

    An important part of this map is the background, and how it interacts with the player's perspective and sense of scale. I also wanted to consider what "day" would look like for a planet with an unconventional sun. I'm not sure if this is really a "black hole sun", but it's definitely something out of the ordinary. (Whatever it is, you probably wouldn't want to be sunburnt by it though...)

    [​IMG]

    The materials used in this map were an interesting choice. I went with a very minimalist white stucco (it has a subtle texture if you get close) to highlight the lighting, and really drive home the light ethereal feel of the map. While this white does show characters, vehicles, explosions and decals very well, I still wanted to contrast it with some strong color; hence the thick foliage, rich blue sky and raw stone. Feeding back into the idea of making the map feel like a real environment, I hope the exposed stone communicates that the structure is partially carved directly out of the cliff itself.
    [​IMG]

    Overall, I had a lot of fun building this map. The gameplay is fantastic (thanks completely to _N_ on this) but if you get the chance between frags, stop and take a look around!

    Enjoy!

    Any feedback, positive or negative (but hopefully informative) is appreciated!

    Download:
    PC:
    http://files.filefront.com/13762733
    PS3:
    http://files.filefront.com/13768202
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2009
  2. M.A.D.X.W

    M.A.D.X.W Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Messages:
    4,506
    Likes Received:
    5
    Holy jesus, it looks awesome,
    The lighting deffinitly looks spectacular.
    It looks like Andrew deffinitly achieved his goal with the graphics, the first thing that struk me about the screens was the contrast between the like futuristic an un-unatural structure and the natural foliage.

    i look forward to playing it to see what the gameplay is like, but sure its good as its sounds like you but alot of taught in.
    Downloading..
     
  3. Darkdrium

    Darkdrium 20% Cooler

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Messages:
    3,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    At the first screenshot, my mouth was like :eek:
    Then, at the second screenshot, it was like :eek: (The eyes are inaccurate though)
    By the time I finished looking at the pictures (What's with all those words by the way, they take too much space), it was like :eek2:

    I just clicked download. Reflex. :D

    EDIT: Truly amazing theme. I have not done a botmatch yet. Only gripe: in the middle the energy sound becomes quite loud, possibly because of two overlapping sound emitters. It could also use some custom music to complement the amazing theme, if it is possible :)
    I thought I wouldn't be able to play this map well, I am surprised, just a drop in FPS when a window break, and I have to be quite close to the shards too. COOL!
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2009
  4. HedgeMaster

    HedgeMaster New Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Messages:
    135
    Likes Received:
    0
    [Can't find my jaw under the desk]

    Looks like exactly what Unreal Engine is supposed to do. Formidable graphics and creative use of physics :) Can't wait for new gear to run it with high details.
     
  5. cooloola

    cooloola A good samaritan

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2005
    Messages:
    778
    Likes Received:
    0
    This map is gorgeous. Still haven't played it though.
     
  6. M.A.D.X.W

    M.A.D.X.W Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Messages:
    4,506
    Likes Received:
    5
    The clean lines reminds of Portal a bit
     
  7. Waffnuffly

    Waffnuffly >:E

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2001
    Messages:
    2,197
    Likes Received:
    0
    WOW. This looks really awesome. And VCTF too!
     
  8. Kantham

    Kantham Fool.

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    Messages:
    18,047
    Likes Received:
    2
    Like I said on EGF, awesome job from you and Andrew.

    Hah, I'm glad I'm not the only on then. ;)
     
  9. Fluorescence

    Fluorescence New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    i was going to say that :) truly stunning! although somewhat reminds me of VCTF-DestroyedCapital...JOKE :) i think a map like this is what everyone aspires to.
     
  10. evilmrfrank

    evilmrfrank Banned

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    1,631
    Likes Received:
    0
    wow looks nice!
     
  11. Section-9

    Section-9 Zone Photographer

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2008
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    Lighting reminds me of Mirror's Edge a bit, awesome looking map downloading now. :)
     
  12. Kantham

    Kantham Fool.

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    Messages:
    18,047
    Likes Received:
    2
    Actually the second something is white and clean, people go "OH this reminds me of Mirror's Edge" ;)

    It reminds me of Mass Effect actually.
    http://masseffect.bioware.com/_commonext/images/me/screenshots/2007/masseffect_27_1280x760.jpg

    And you can tell the influence is huge.

    If I have any recommendation to make, it would be to make something similar to this but for warfare, using the same technique Cold Harbor did (Control countdown node(s) for victory). We definitively need more of those layouts.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2009
  13. Vaskadar

    Vaskadar It's time I look back from outer space

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2008
    Messages:
    2,672
    Likes Received:
    45
    This is definitely a keeper, once pathing has been optimized, weighted and such. I really like the breakable glass, lets you know that it's believable. I also recall the switches and control panels looking like something out of the Beatles' Yellow Submarine. It's really cool to look at, and just as fun to play. Keep up the good work.

    Um, things I noticed about AI pathing: the Stealthbender gets hitched up on the garden rock very easily, set the path nodes that are centrally located in the main pathways to be "Primary Vehicle Paths" it should improve their movement greatly.
     
  14. M.A.D.X.W

    M.A.D.X.W Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Messages:
    4,506
    Likes Received:
    5
    Yeah i agree with Kantham on the mirrors edge, I hate the way people constantly link cleanness and brightness with mirrors edge.

    The only thing about the map i dont like is that the stealthbender is in it, its a fairly small map, and its hard enough to get around in the small vehicles never mind the stealthbender!
    The Manta works well in the map, though.
    Its very near to being regular CTF though i didn't use any vehicle really when i played, you don't really need them, but i guess it makes it more fun.

    I liked how you used reverb volumes as well, very noticeable in the underneath area.
    The bad thing about the under part, is that if you go down there with the flag theres no way back up, without hammer jumping up through the glass, and risk death or am i missing something?
    I also really liked the breakable glass, cos as well as adding to the authenticity, its also gameplay affecting, and you can like shooot out the glass from under bots feat, which is cool.

    Very nice map, its visually stunning and very fun too!
     
  15. Numb51

    Numb51 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    0
    oh, my gucking god dude. That is the best looking map i've seen yet. I've been learning max JUST for the purpose of making architecture like this. It's nice and clean, without alot of detail, and it still looks awesome.

    Edit: I just played it, and wow man, good job. I wish there were some sort of tutorial on how to make architecture like this, I've been searching for days.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2009
  16. Kantham

    Kantham Fool.

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    Messages:
    18,047
    Likes Received:
    2
    Without that lighting application, it wouldn't ever have looked that good. :)
    Man I sooo wish we'd get lightmass and ambient occlusion by now...
     
  17. Cowlike

    Cowlike New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2008
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree about the energy sound, it's loud as to create a sort of overdrive effect when you're close enough. Still enjoyed the map a lot, really fun in addition of looking beautiful.
     
  18. Vaskadar

    Vaskadar It's time I look back from outer space

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2008
    Messages:
    2,672
    Likes Received:
    45
    if you decrease the minimum radii of the sounds near the flag, that would allow the user to know the source of the sound, just another ambient tip.
     
  19. _Lynx

    _Lynx Strategic Military Services Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2003
    Messages:
    1,964
    Likes Received:
    8
    Incredible architecture. That should be an MSUC entry.
     
  20. Section-9

    Section-9 Zone Photographer

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2008
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    Agreed. :eek: Real nice job on the map, a Warfare version would be sweet!
     

Share This Page