PDA

View Full Version : Forest test mission (DromEd2 only)



ChangelingJane
15th Jul 2002, 03:45
I'm working on a Thief 2 level concept that puts the player in a forest at night. I want to make the effect as believable and scary as possible without being horrendously slow or complicated to build. And I want it to look better than "Trail of Blood"--no highly visible flat forest walls.

I made a test mission using a method I came up with, and I'd like to know if its "playable" and not too confusing to other people that don't know the layout.

If anybody has some spare time, could they please load this test mission into DromEd and give it a spin?

It's just a small area with one AI (who is visible at the beginning). It's also dark--I recommend you play with the lights off and at the correct gamma for full effect. It might run a little choppy on slower systems.

http://www.geocities.com/smitemeister216/thief/f2.zip

Right-clicking and choosing "Save As..." should work.

Thanks a bunch! ^_^

Komag
15th Jul 2002, 06:28
Tried it, liked it :D

It wasn't slow on my system, but I have a pretty good one with GF3 and P4 1.7ghz.

I think the darkness level is pretty good, though I'm sure others will complain that it's too dark (I don't think so). Make sure, though, to set the EAX setting to Large Dead so there's no echoey sound as when you jump.

ChangelingJane
15th Jul 2002, 15:17
Coolness. Thanks for the feedback!

zacharias
15th Jul 2002, 15:21
That is a cool start.
Looks good, atmospheric and the terrain works convincingly as trees..But i got pretty confused as to whether i had been at a certain place before, even with a small map. You'd definitely want to give the player a compass, and probably let certain areas have distinguishing features. (Perhaps a moon in the sky could help the player navigate also.)

Other suggestion: instead of 'walls' for the map limits, you could try big boulders at some spots for variety, then have trees or sky beyond this. Check out Shipping and Receiving, where an OldChair (don't know why this particular object is used) is set to use model name--> breaker1 or breaker2 (the big rock objects).

TRoosevelt_26
15th Jul 2002, 15:36
Ditto what Zacharias said, and it is a bit dark, I think.

PS - Did you mean you weren't going to have visible forest-textured walls? Or none at all?

ChangelingJane
15th Jul 2002, 18:46
Originally posted by TRoosevelt_26
PS - Did you mean you weren't going to have visible forest-textured walls? Or none at all?

No visible walls. They are still gonna be there to keep the framerate low and to give the illusion of dense forest. Little bits will be barely lit here and there to help give a sense of location. I'm going to light it so that there's never a spot where the player is surrounded by pitch black--there'll always be light somewhere to give direction.

ChangelingJane
15th Jul 2002, 18:52
Originally posted by zacharias
That is a cool start.
Looks good, atmospheric and the terrain works convincingly as trees..But i got pretty confused as to whether i had been at a certain place before, even with a small map. You'd definitely want to give the player a compass, and probably let certain areas have distinguishing features. (Perhaps a moon in the sky could help the player navigate also.)

I'm definitely gonna add "landmarks" to use as navigation, and the moon is a good idea too.

It's kinda funny how possible it is to feel lost in that map, when it's essentially a circle ^_^


Other suggestion: instead of 'walls' for the map limits, you could try big boulders at some spots for variety, then have trees or sky beyond this. Check out Shipping and Receiving, where an OldChair (don't know why this particular object is used) is set to use model name--> breaker1 or breaker2 (the big rock objects).

Thanks for the tip. I think that was done in the first mission as well. (but the area it's done in isn't visible anyways--I was looking at it in DromEd) I'm also gonna put in sloped terrain for variety, and there's obviously gonna be more than just the forest itself, so ^_^

Apache
15th Jul 2002, 23:30
seemed kinda dark to me..i had my gamma all the way up just to see in front of me..i was getting lost for being in pitch dark..but very nice effect..

Lytha
16th Jul 2002, 09:45
It has definitely an excellent atmosphere. :)

But I agree that it was too dark, I had the gamma and my monitor brightness both way up.

schwaa
16th Jul 2002, 21:15
I reset the ambient and it looked really good.

I bit choppy but not too bad.

Have you seen the other tree texture in Drom? the one you made the side of forest with are the leaves. There is another that has tree trunks mixed in, its great for lower forest. Like make all you big bruches two high instead of one. have the leaves up top and the trunks below. That helps alot with the illusion of trees.

I walked through Trail awhile back to see how it was done too. I'm currently working on a swamp/ forest. They used HUGE trees, 20 feet around. I thought that was great for two reasons. One they blocked sight lines and helped lower polycount, and two it made you feel really small.

Looks really good though, I look foward to playing something like that!

ChangelingJane
17th Jul 2002, 00:02
Thanks for the tip schwaa, I was wondering if that's how those textures were supposed to be used.

The big trees are a bit much, to me. I'd rather divide areas with my black walls and leave the trees at a more modest size. That's just my style, though.

I have the uneven terrain going on now, and it's pretty cool. Adds another dimension to the landscape (literally). The mission is probably going to be called "Hunter, Hunted", and the player will be searching for a thieves' hideout while evading guards. Should be pretty cool.

RicknMel
18th Jul 2002, 21:06
Very nice, It has a great "Blair Witch" atmosphere to it. ;)

Although...a little more light would be great.

Gumdrop
18th Jul 2002, 23:31
Have you thaught about using non rendered objects to block the player? I experimented with this idea while building a small forest a while ago. I built a nice little copse, but like yourself, I wanted no ugly walls of bland textures destroying the atmosphere - so I dropped the ambient lighting to 08 08 08 (anything lower is pitch black). I then carved out a low shelf (textured as rocks) around the outside of the play area and extended the forest in all directions. Once this was done, I resized the 10 ft iron fence, made it invisible, and placed then all round the top of the shelf to block the player. Coupled with the low lighting (and fog), I could wander round a convincing forest without seeing any terrible bland walls.

Ofcourse there may be some players that will complain that they can't mantle up onto a low wall, but I think that is being a bit anal as alot of games use similar tricks. The low obstical defines the boundary, but also lets you create a more convincing looking forest by showing the trees disappearing into the gloom.

Just a thaught. :)

ChangelingJane
19th Jul 2002, 01:11
That would work, but I want a dark, oppressive forest. In order to do that, I need things to be black and the space to be tight.