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Basic, But of utmost importance, geometry tutorial. Plus Tips.

Posted by Nicadeamas (more from this author)
Friday, January 22, 2010 - 10:18 pm (EST)
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Okay, You can build some awesome stuff. And it can run well to.. But if you keep a single rule for your construction you can make your map run SOOOO much better and have SOOOO much more detail. And save yourself SOOO much time.

But there is another 3 bonus rules that help out a lot too.

 

The basic rule is this.

-Always align your brushwork to the grid. Always align the vetex points to the grid. (hit Shift+V to edit the location of the vertex points.)

If you do:

1. You map will compile MUCH faster.

2. Your mapsize will be smaller.

3. Your map will render easier.

4. You can make your map 10 times bigger and better.

5. You will be able to understand your map easier on the grid, and thus make it more complex without confuseing yourself.

6. It will start a personal relationship between you and the source engine. Once it finds out your not trying to kill it, it might do you a favor now and then.

Bonus rule 1. If you can align your brushwork to the lighter colored lines on the grid, do it. If it's off by one unit, it's worth the effort to fix that.

Bonus rule 2. Make all your main walls 16 units thick, your inside walls can be no less then 8 units thick, ceilings and floors should be 16 units thick. Skybox brushwork should be 32 units thick. And anything less then 8 units thick should be Func_detail 95% of the time.

Bonus rule 3. Dont let brushwork cut through other brushwork. Except for the RARE acception of Func_detail.

And here are a bunch of pictures to drive the point home.

Tip 1: Be careful when dragging your brushes around a map. Even with "align to grid" on, if you are dragging brushes and ALSO dragging models (all selected at the same time) then you can wind up off the grid.

Tip 2: If you rotate an existing brush by something other than 90, 180, 270, there's a very good chance it's vertices will be off the grid.

Tip 3: Build your map all textured in Nodraw, then when the shapes are finished, texture it one face at a time. There is no sense applying a texture to a brush face that you cant see. Thus, each face you cannot see should be textured with Nodraw, Nodraw is a texture that says "Hey, the player cant see me, so dont waist time and resources compiling lighting for me."

Tip 4:Learn hotkeys, they are a huge time saver. And it's so neat when you have one hand typeing away a book of hotkeys while the other hand sets up a network of brushwork.

categories: tutorial, source engine, mapping

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vecima said:

Nice one!  No mapper should go without this information.

Sunday, January 24, 2010 - 6:05 pm (EST) login to reply

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