Download (direct link):
When fixing errors, try making minor adjustments and then testing your progress. Often, you will find that a simple adjustment can make a world of difference, and you donâ€™t have to put forth so much effort in fixing your problems.
You might not have realized it yet, but the game already comes with a bunch of example maps for you to look at. All the levels that you can play in the game are supplied with a map located inside the pak files.
If youâ€™re playing a level in the game, you might come across something that you would like to use or create in your own map. Take note of the level youâ€™re playing and then search it out in the pak files. Extract the map file from the pak file and open it in the editor. There, you can find exactly how it was created in the game, and you can recreate it in your own level.
348 Part V: The Part of Tens
The same goes for other parts of the game. Scripts, GUIs, and other things used to make a level work are included in the pak files. Even the models that are using the game can be imported into a 3D modeling program. The possibilities are staggering.
Sometimes, checking out examples can inspire you and/or drastically reduce your build time. The maps that come with the game are perfect for this. The developers of the game have put a lot of neat tricks at your fingertips.
If youâ€™re making a map or series of maps that reuse the same construction of brushes, turn it into a prefab. A prefab is like a tiny map that can be imported into any map that youâ€™re working on. Usually, prefabs are made up of guard towers, buildings, or other commonly used structures. This way you have to build them only once, and then you can easily duplicate them whenever you need to.
To create a prefab, select the group of brushes that you want to save. Choose EditOSave Selection as Prefab. Then save the file under a name of your choosing. You can then choose EditOLoad Prefab to load this combination of brushes into the same or a different map as often as you like.
You can also find prefabs available online, usually at the same places you can find custom maps and mods. Sometimes, mappers like to offer their prefabs for download just like their maps. This way their great constructions can find their way into other maps. Just remember that if you do use a prefab in your map that you should give credit to the author in the README file (which I discuss in Chapter 2).
If you are trying to create a more flexible brush in your map, try looking into patch meshes. A patch mesh is like a brush with a lot of splits in it. You can make parts of it bump out or you can make it look cylindrical.
One use of patch meshes is for creating large terrain. If youâ€™re looking to create a ground that has hills and valleys, the patch mesh will do it for you. To use it, draw a square, thin brush roughly the size of the ground that you want to build. Choose PatchOSimple Patch Mesh, and then enter the number of splits you want to be created in the two axes shown in your 2D window.
Chapter 20: Ten Great Tips and Tricks 349
However, when entering the patch density, know that adding more splits creates more polygons within the game. Too many splits, and your game could slow down due to poor optimization.
With your patch mesh created, press Y to show the vertices of your patch. Then press V to edit those vertices. Now you can click and drag the points on your patch mesh to create bumps and depressions.
As for cylinders, you can make nicely rounded pillars in your map. Create a tall, square brush in your map that you would like to turn into a pillar. Then choose PatchOCylinder. The result is a pillar-like structure that you can place in your map any way that you like.
Then, if you choose PatchOCapONormal, you can put a top and bottom on that cylinder. This can make for a good oil can or other similar object.
Try fooling around with patch meshes some more on your own. You will find them useful in certain situations like the ones I mention in this section.
Measure the Player
A very common question in all the mapping forums is, â€śWhat are the player dimensions?â€ť Many people want to know how the game relates to real life in order to properly plan out their maps. Perhaps they want a life-size room or building. These dimensions could help them achieve that.
The basic measurements of the player in the game are as follows:
Playerâ€™s height: 74 units Playerâ€™s crawling height: 40 units Playerâ€™s width: 40 units
Playerâ€™s maximum step without jumping: 16 units Playerâ€™s maximum jumping height: 48 units Playerâ€™s maximum jumping distance: 112 units Playerâ€™s highest fall without damage: 136 units Steepest angle a player can climb: 45 degrees
The unit-to-inch conversion has been averaged out as follows: 1 unit = 1 inch. This may seem ridiculous, but keep in mind that the laws of nature do not apply in the virtual world. Therefore, you really should make your map so that it looks good â€” not so that it maps to real-world specifications.