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Author Topic: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire  (Read 1506 times)

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WNxRicky

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[W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« on: January 20, 2018, 05:28:44 AM »

So, as some of you might know I’ve been working on recreating the Sub Pen map from Nightfire 007. It won’t be a complete 100% classic reconstruction of the level as some of the props or textures might be different for instance and because I’m extending the map with some new parts. Note that the original map is symmetric (both sides of the map are basically the same).

Either way, I’ve been pretty bad at dedicating time to work on the map but I want to finally finish it. Therefore one of New Year’s resolutions this year is to finish Sub Pen. And so to keep me motivated and hopefully also receive some help from you guys I’m making a post on this forum. I will first begin by showing the current state of the map and then I will talk about things that need to be done (and where you can help if you want to (mainly with props)).
I think the best way to show the current state of the map is to show screenshots and to compare to the original so that’s what I will do (note that some parts of the map are somewhat messy).

Here’s are two views from the catwalk:




In the original:




As you can see in my version there are new parts added (note the door and the window in the first screenshot). There’s a func_areaportalwindow at the window you can see, but for it doesn’t work to use a func_breakable as the brush and if I tie the func_areaportalwindow to a func_brush it just lets through all bullets (ideally either only shots from penetrating weapons should be possible or you shouldn’t be able to shoot through it at all).

Inside the sub:




Compare to the original:





Obviously there are several props missing and the texture for the pipes need to be changed (otherwise they look a bit like roman columns).

Corridor:



For some reason the reflections are off (these are cubemap reflections so I suppose I need to assign the cube map brush faces in such a way that avoids the issue, not sure how exactly):



And in original:



The main difference here is that I’ve used a simple prop in order to obtain the light emission effect. I think the texture is too bright though. I’m not sure if the same effect can be obtained using a texture or if that would be better. Also notice the weird artifact on the left side in the first screenshot of the corridor. This artifact even appears on some flat surfaces and is related to the cubemaps it seems.
I’ve also added another corridor part which connects to the new parts of the map:



Elevator room:



Original:



As you can see there’s another connection to the new parts in the map (you can jump across to get to the other side or jump across from the other side, although it can be tricky at times).


Views of the sub and most of the main room:




In the original:





And yes, you can swim (unlike in the original):



Obviously a proper submarine texture is still missing among other things.


So what are the things that remain to be done? I will begin by listing some of the things that are missing compared to the original:
  • There are several textures that are missing, including a better texture for the corridor part, a texture for the submarine, a texture for the columns on the walls, various textures for props and so on. I’m pretty sure I will be able to create the missing textures.
  • There are missing props, including: A few railing props, ceiling details, hanging lamps, computer panels, office chairs, periscope (I started working with the periscope as you can see here:  but I’m not sure how the middle part can be created ) and banners (the banners technically seem easy to create but ideally there would be some kind of animations when shooting a banner). I’m not good at creating props so if anyone is interested in creating a couple of the props it would be awesome, but if that’s not possible I can try using existing GE:S props instead.
  • Clearly the lighting can be improved significantly. There are also other aspects that can be improved such as cubemap placement, adding sounds, adding music (I could theoretically compose something but I’m a bit rusty atm so I would prefer if someone either makes a remix of the original Sub Pen music, but it would be fine to re-use one of the existing GE:S tracks) and so on. These things are more like end touches so it’s not my priority to fix them right now.
  • Of course there are other aspects such as ammo, weapon and armor placements that will need to be refined through the course of testing.
  • Optimization.

I would also like to add some new parts to the map. Currently there’s one new segment in the map and I’m not entirely sure of the layout so it’s subject to change if needed. But other than that it would be interesting to add:
  • Be able to swim from one side of the map to the other (the original map is symmetric). I’m thinking a pipe or something like that.
  • An underwater tunnel where you can see water above (maybe in semicircular shape) and that gets you from one side of the map to the other.
  • Possibly an outside part consisting of a harbor. It would be nighttime rather than daytime. Several parts of the map would connect to it.

Before I end this post I want to thank Kraid for his help with some parts of the map and also his advice. I also want to thank Graslu for helping me with some of the decals and textures. Finally I want to thank Spydow, Uufje and many others for playtesting earlier versions of the map.
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De¢r¥pter1990

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2018, 06:01:18 AM »

your map looks beautiful, congratulations! it's very similar to the original :)
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namajnaG

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2018, 07:02:31 AM »

Two community maps announcements in two days, haven't seen this in a while!
I'm glad someone picked up a console NF map, they have pretty neat layouts overall. Looking forward to seeing more progress on this, nice work!
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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2018, 07:16:06 AM »

 8)
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Multiplayer_X_

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2018, 09:44:54 PM »

Excited to play finished product!
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twitch

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2018, 05:20:46 PM »

This looks amazing!
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Helios

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2018, 11:57:35 AM »

This looks amazing! I remember testing the map a few years ago, and I can't wait to play the completed map.  :)
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xXAkelaWolfXx

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2018, 01:36:09 PM »

Ou yes sub pen i love to see it in goldeneye
its my favorite map
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WNxRicky

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #8 on: November 10, 2018, 10:50:32 PM »

With less than two months to go to the initial deadline I want to give an extensive update and give my thoughts for what I will do next.

How has it gone so far?

Well, things haven't gone as well as I hoped for. I will start explaining by giving an overview of the months so far. In December 2017 I started my master's thesis (which was the only remaining part in my master of science in electrical engineering degree). At first the work burden wasn't too bad. This enabled me to do some work on the Subpen (although I still didn't work on it often enough). However, already in March I started getting more and more busy with the master's thesis. Things got especially bad in April, May and the first half of June. In April I pretty much stopped working with the Subpen. In June and July I was busy with finishing up the last parts of my master's thesis (there wasn't much left to do but I had to correct some errors in the report). In August I was finally able to apply for my degree (I had to wait for the university administration to return from their vacations). In August and September I was somewhat busy looking for work. I didn't have the will to return to working on the Subpen until I got this sorted out. In October I finally returned to working on Subpen, although I took a break in the beginning of November.

But how much work did I get done on the level during these months? Well, not much. I added a few props to the map (mostly existing ones). I tried adding new parts to the map but didn't feel inspired enough to go through with that. I experimented with an underwater tunnel only to come to the conclusion that it wouldn't fit in the map. I fixed some minor bugs. And so on.

An issue of motivation

But why do I work on the map so rarely? Why do I have trouble to keep being motivated? Is it just an issue of being busy? Nope, the main issue is not that I'm too busy to work on Subpen. Sure, now I'm working so I'm busy most of the time on weekdays. Despite this I could easily find maybe even 3h per day on workdays to work on Subpen and then even more time during weekends. Time is not the main issue. Neither is tiredness. Sure, after work I can be tired sometimes but I still tend to find enough energy to do other things such as learning German (I started learning German in the middle of August). The issue is that I lack the motivation to work on mapping. Unlike programming for instance I don't really enjoy it too much. There are three specific parts I have issues with:
The main issue is creating custom props. I don't think it's fun to create 3D models, especially complicated ones. The issue is that I'm not good at Blender (or any other 3D modelling program) and I don't have the motivation to become good at it. Thus I don't enjoy creating 3D models and I tend to get stuck when trying to create more complicated ones (I simply give up).
The second issue is that although I have visions for how extensions to a map could look (for instance the harbor part I mentioned in my original post), I fail to implement them in practice in Hammer. It's not so much that I lack creativity in this regard, it's just that I don't have the creativity to make the new segments fit with the rest of the map. I suppose I prefer if I'm given the measurements rather than trying to figure out suiting measurements on my own.
The third issue is that I don't like creating custom textures either. However, creating custom textures is much easier than creating custom props (for the most part at least). Since I've done lots of photo editing in GIMP I for the most part have the skills needed in order to create custom textures. Still, it can be a hassle, especially when you can't find a good template texture to work on.

What's next?

With all that being said I still want to finish the project, but it will be not as ambitious as described in the original post. I will keep the current extension of the map but I will not add any new parts such as the harbor or an underwater tunnel. I will however create the underwater transition between the two parts of the maps (see point 1 near the end of the original post).

My main focus will instead be on finishing what I've got, specifically:

- I will add the missing props. Wherever I can I will use existing GE:S props rather than creating new ones. An example of this is the computer panel props in the submarine. I re-created one of the computer panel props from the original map but the other two computer panel props from the original are harder to create and I did get stuck when trying to create them. Thus creating the two remaining computer panel props might be a futile effort for me. Instead what I will do is that I will simply re-use some of the existing GE:S computer or computer panel props. Although it won't anymore look like in the original map (not that it has to, it is after all not a classic version of Subpen), there are two advantages: The first one is that I don't have to expend much time and effort into creating my own props and the second one is that the GE:S props are much more detailed and much better looking anyway. A similar case can be made for other props. For instance I can re-use the existing office chair prop rather than creating a new one. I can also re-use one of the hanging lamp props instead of creating a new one. Furthermore I can modify existing GE:S props to suit my needs instead of creating new props from scratch.
- The same goes for textures. To the extent possible I will either re-use existing GE:S textures or find textures on sites such as fpsbanana and use those (possibly with some modifications).
- After I add the rest of the props, the rest of the textures, finish the current extension to the map and create the underwater transition between the two sides of the map, there will not be a whole lot work left. The remaining parts will include: improving the lighting, adding sounds, adding music, changing or adding spawns, changing or adding armor and weapon locations, fixing bugs, testing (to make sure the map balance is correct), optimization, and so on.

Needless to say I probably won't be done with the map this year. I'm actually aiming for beginning of April but who knows, maybe it will be done before that.

Will I work on other maps?

Given what I've said in this post it's not likely that I will work on other maps but I would love to see Auric Enterprise from Goldfinger and the Space Station from Moonraker. If I would work on another map I would not make the mistake of getting stuck on the minor details of having the exact textures or exact props. Sure, it's nice to have textures and props resembling the original ones (in this case from the movies) but I won't be the one creating them at least.
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Entropy-Soldier

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Re: [W.I.P] Sub Pen from Nightfire
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2018, 04:03:59 PM »

Sorry to hear that you've had so much trouble with the map, but good for you for sticking with it!  I'm looking forward to your tentative April release date.


Congrats on your graduation and new job!
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