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VCTF-YM_SangreValley (yet another Blood Gulch remake) [Beta 4][DL - 31 Dec 2011]

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    VCTF-YM_SangreValley (yet another Blood Gulch remake) [Beta 4][DL - 31 Dec 2011]

    Name: VCTF-YM_SangreValley_b4
    Version: rev 4, 31 Dec 2011
    Description: Another remake of Halo's Blood Gulch, this time with a "high plains" theme (sort of). The general scale and layout was based on Shane Transue's remake (distance between bases, vehicles and the general weapon layout), but all of the terrain, BSP bases, decorations and pathing are completely new.

    Comments: I really liked the original remake but felt that there needed to be more cover and that a different theme could look pretty cool. Quite a few custom textures and models are included.

    I welcome any and all comments. There are still a few areas in the map that I'm just not quite sure what to do with so suggestions are encouraged!

    <-> <->


    Credits: Me, but the scale was based on the previous remake's scale/layout

    Update 31 Dec 2011: Incorporated suggestions from Sly and Heimdallr below, with the following fixes/changes in rev 4.0:
    -changed skybox
    -fixed collision on some trees (sort of...)
    -changed weapon pickups a bit at each base (added weapon lockers and an AVRIL)
    -placed karma blocking volume around ruin to simplify vehicle collision with it
    -added more rock static meshes as cover along with a few trees
    -bumped out fade distance for white-ish foliage just a tad
    -added trim BSP to base

    Download: Get it here!

    Look sweeeeet.
    I don't know the original as I never really played Halo (just tried at a friend's house) so I won't be able to point out things like "this should be more like in the original".

    Downloading. I'll give it a try later today and post some detailled feedback.

    But I can tell one thing for sure: What first caught my attention was the sky. I would put some white fogring in the distance (skyline meshes has a nice one). Usually the sky is never "one-coloured". There is always some kind of fading from a brigther blue/white (bottom) to the usual deep blue (top) which you can see when there are no clouds. And the contrast of lighting and shadows could be stronger. Atm the lighting would fit more for a slightly cloudy version.

    I'm a fan of CTF and vCTF. I'm curious what vehicles you put in and how it plays.


      Ok, so here's the feedback:
      • Some of the trees have no proper karma collision, I could fly through them with my Manta
      • Red Redeemer: It is pretty obvious that it's just a cubic map and not a huge world. The illusion gets lost because the cliffs suddenly stop and there is no background. Apart from that you can see the "outside" of the map (and the bottom of the skybox) if you just jump with your Manta at the red Redeemer.
      • Blue base, top: The teleporter texture needs some alignment as one edge is unaligned.
      • I think you should lower the StallZ level. In fact, I almost managed to get out of the map/get on top of the cliffs by using the "terrain ramp" in combination with a Manta jump and the cliff wall at the blue Redeemer.
      • Cave with the Lightning Gun: I could get on the outer wall of it, again with the help of a Manta. It can be a nasty sniping spot, you can keep it as it's not really bad but I just wanted to let you know this is possible. In case you want to avoid sniper camping at these cliffs on the outside of the cave, a few BVs should do it.
      • I think you forgot to set a proper karma collision at the super shield house ruin. My Hellbender got stuck on the walls of it. If you already have a karma collision for these static meshes, I would convert each to a builder brush and use it to place a detailled BV on the same location as the static mesh. Or you can make a simplified collision model in the 2D shape editor and place it.
      • The foliage layer with the white little plants fades off way too sudden. Imo it needs a smoother transition between visible and invisible as they're pretty bright and thus it's quickly visible when they suddenly fade off.
      • A skydome is not really necessary as it's just a bunch of polys you do not need when using a clear blue sky. If you want to know what I mean by that, you can take a look at the (poor and boring) skybox of my BlockForts remake (see link in my signature). There you can also see what I meant by using a fogring to create an illusion of a realistic sky. My skybox is not super detailled as I wanted to achieve this "oldschool N64 Super Mario look" by keeping it simple, but I think this simple technique would fit into your map as well! And I think a few cliffs or some cliff textures in combination with fog in the skybox could create an illusion of a huge environment surrounding the playable area.
      • Don't forget the sun! A lens flare or a corona or emitter or something of that kind would be ideal to achieve a realistic look.
      • Some more trimming would be nice. On the roof/top of the bases the sudden texture change on the edges of BSP cought my attention.
      • Just as I stated in my previous post, some more contrast in lighting will do the rest. This map has a clear blue sky and a "desert-ish theme" that's why a bright sunlight would fit into this map pretty well!

      I hope I could help you with my review. Keep at it, looking forward to b4!

      PS: If you need any pictures of the places I described, let me know and I will post some!


        Thanks Sly! This is exactly the kind of feedback I needed. I will address these in the next release. I may keep the sniping spots up high (as long as I can make sure that both sides have their own location). I will probably put a square"ish" blocking volume around the entire house ruins ( I thought I had simplified collision hulls on the walls already, but may have messed them up), will fix the tree mesh collision as well. I'm kicking around what to put in the skybox, but do intend to add to it for the next release (I thought I had added a sun, but looks like I missed it :P, also I appreciate pointing out the note on the sky dome).

        I don't generally like adding trim, but will add some (or at least some railings or something to give the edge a more polished feel. I had originally had the foliage fade out much further out but it was killing my machine's performance so I drastically brought it in. I may change that whitish plant foliage layer to high detail only and add another with foliage that better blends in with the terrain texture.

        Again thank you for the detailed feedback, I very much appreciate the time taken to post it!


          your map is cool


            Hmmm... a BlockingVolume around the ruination? I wouldn't do that. You could jump on the BV with your Manta which would look a bit odd.
            This map is something in between medium and small, I don't think a Manta fits in there gameplay-wise. Takes just a few seconds from one side to another, but on the other hand, it would be a bit too hard to take out the Goliath then...


              Originally posted by Sly. View Post
              Look sweeeeet.
              I don't know the original as I never really played Halo (just tried at a friend's house) so I won't be able to point out things like "this should be more like in the original".
              I'm a fan of CTF and vCTF. ....
              Like me, I didn't know that the Halo version is the orignal version.
              Personnally, I though it was >>> VCTF-BloodGulch <<<

              Never mind, the work looks quite good mainly the terrain and the rocks (moutains arround the map).
              I think, your version is better for this 2 points.
              After, Sly. resumed the other points.

              After, about the goliath, it 's very too hard. Remove it.
              Unless, you put one of the middle like a keg or superweapon which each team will try to fight for it.


                @maxim123: Thanks!

                @ Sly.: The blocking volume will be square-ish but I will either put a 'pyramid' shaped volume on top of it or maybe one of those volumes that pushes karma objects out of it.

                @Heimdallr: That Blood Gulch version was the one I used for the general scale/base layout, but it itself was a remake from the xbox version of Halo (complete with ripped textures etc.).

                I mainly play this map with my own Tango Down Warfare Vehicle pack (see link in signature) so I'm not sure whether I will remove any of the vehicles, BUT that being said if you guys really think the Goliath and Mantas should go, I will remove them. If I left the Goliath and added an AVRIL to each side would that be OK? Is there a better weapon that I could include to balance the tanks more?

                Working on B4 version now...


                  An AVRiL would be indeed useful. The Manta can stay if you try to make it harder for it to reach the other side. The AVRiL would do the job pretty well.
                  And as a "bonus", the Goliath could serve (just as Heimdallr stated) as a tactical vehicle. Simply move it into the middle of the map.


                    If you wanna keep the goliath at each side, you should add a mountain or any else which share the flag zone (out side the small buidling).
                    Like that, the tank can't cover all the place and the obstruction help a bit the attack.
                    Other wise, the tactical vehicle is a good compromise.


                      Ok, I've incorporated some of the proposed changes and posted Rev 4, see first post. I intend to make at least a few more inconsequential changes before this goes final. Is the map lighting OK?


                        Any feedback/comments/suggestions? I know at least a couple of people have downloaded revision 4.


                          Just Downloaded it, I'll Let you know soon
                          Cordially, MDK


                            I don't have a lot of time to play the level and give ya feedback Meowzerz, but I figured I'd drop a little info just in case you have access to a Xbox360. Bungie just recently re-released Halo1 on the 360 with improved everything or whatever. So that might be worth looking at if you have access. The "gulch" appeared in every Halo game (1-3 that is,) but did not bear the same name. It was improved upon each time, and the last version in Halo 3 probably being the best. In Halo 2 it was called Coagulation, in Halo 3 it is Valhalla. It was always a slayer (DM) map until Halo 3, in which case Valhalla is a CTF/VCTF map, but I think it's still good for TDM/VCTF and things like that. The bases were more fleshed out and WAYY cooler than the earlier versions and had a much more dynamic feel for the gameplay.

                            Just a little info share in case you can go rent the game and pop in a 360 for a few mins for ideas. I gotta say all the UT2004 remakes of this level have been "off" a great deal and were just not very good. I know that yours will likely end up being the best one, so good luck with getting it to a final, and I look forward to giving it a play one day soon.

                            Please somehow work Blood Gulch or something like that into the name so people know what it is.

                            About the Karma stuff....sometimes just myLeveling the mesh and using the highest KDop option for Karma Collision (and normal) is a good option for meshes that just have per poly collsision in place. It'll give ya a little more complex collision "box" that you're probably willling to screw with for each tree, and the beauty is if you scaled any of them, you don't have to make smaller versions of the blocking volums. That tedious suckery right there. I'm guessing you know that, but just in case.


                              Yeah, right know maybe a better name would be nice.

                              Other than that the map is great so far, I can't really point out anything of significance as of yet.