Unoffical Mapping FAQ (w/ Map Scale!)

  • Please make sure you are familiar with the forum rules. You can find them here: https://forums.tripwireinteractive.com/index.php?threads/forum-rules.2334636/

UncleDrax

FNG / Fresh Meat
Oct 13, 2005
1,494
60
0
Florida, USA
www.endoftheworldfor.us
Thought I'd fire up this thread now since there is is a topic in General that is starting to talk about this.

Add in you're thoughts, suggestions, tips, links, etc..

Questions specifically about the Red Orchestra Ostfront SDK:
(taken from other threads)

- What is the Real World to Unreal Unit (UU) scale
[RO]Ramm-Jaeger said:
The UU conversion rate is not the same as standard UT. In Ostfront:
1 meter = 60.352 UUs.

- Will there be a SDK that ships with Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45:

A Beta of the SDK is available as of 28 April 2006.
See This annoucement for details!

- Will there be documentation/tutorials/guides on mapping with the Red Orchestra SDK?

Yes! See The Downloads Section for the SDK Manual for a PDF guide!

- How far, in UU's can the player run before becoming fatigued?
The base player can run approximately 6000uu's before becoming 100% fatigued. (this is roughly 100meters)

------------------------------------
Some good starting points:

- Unreal Wiki:
Wiki about Unreal Engine based development/level design. Covers alittle bit of everything, but be careful of some topics may apply to old engines or other custom engine adaptations; Sometimes alittle confusing to use because of this.
http://wiki.beyondunreal.com/wiki/

- Unreal Developers Network (UDN):
Epic's wiki on all things Unreal Engine.
There is free access to the majority of topics about Unreal Engine 2.
http://udn.epicgames.com/Main/WebHome

- Map Orchestra:
Custom mapping information, links, etc..
http://www.maporchestra.com/home/

- The Red Orchestra Art Forum:
Good for talking about modeling and texturing. :]

-------------------------------------------------------

FAQ:
- What will I need to get started?
The minimun you will need is the RO SDK, which be included with RO:Ostfront.

For designing additional 3d assests, you should also get a 3d program, 3dS Max, Maya, Lightwave, Blender, etc.
The UnrealWiki has topics about this:
For new sounds, you will need some sort of sound editor application; Audicity, Soundforge, Adboe
audition, etc..

You will probably also want a graphical package of decent quality. Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, or the GIMP all work well. In addition to this, the Nvidia DDS tools are very handy.


- Where are some good Tutorials?
There is a tutorial specific thread here: http://www.redorchestragame.com/forum/showthread.php?t=342
 
Last edited:

SavetheJets

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 24, 2005
149
0
0
So i shall offer my advice about RO level design, or at least my experience

- Do your research - This is very importatnt otherwise most RO players will write off your map if it contains large innaccuracies. Im not saying that a map that isnt 100% can't be popular but it will have a greater chance of success.

- TEST,TEST,TEST. This is a hard thing to come by as most servers are unwilling to put your map up to test it on a full server, or testing sessions will result in little or no comments. A kind of catch 22: wont put a unfished map on a server to test it, but you cant finish it without testing.
A good map needs to be run through many times, best thing i can suggest if you do get it on a server would be to spectate other players as much as possible and see how they play the map. Cause feedback will generally consist of "this rocks", or "this map blows". This is where being highly critical of your own work will help you out.

- If you design your own static meshes make sure they are textured well, nothing ruins a good model better than a sloppy texture.

- Go easy on the BSP, i guess this is just personal preference but I find Smesh architecture to be not only more interesting and varied to look at but you'll get 100 times better preformance outta them.

- Optimize : try and keep the amount of textures you use to a minimum and use the SM display distance feature as much as you can. Again people will not play your map if they get 5fps on it.

-Gameplay: Honestly the one generality i've noticed in maps that people seem to like is just smashing the two teams into a head on collision. Basicly give them one or two tunnels and maybe a side road or two and those are the only options they can choose. Sniper spots are clearly exposed and the player will know if someone is there or not. I know this sounds boring and im sure people want the option to "flank" but truth be told they will always just spawn>run>shoot once or twice> die even when given the option to advance behind cover, flank, etc...

Anyhoo im sure i'll think of more later but for now this is my 2 cents
 

Quietus

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 25, 2005
1,945
0
0
California
SavetheJets said:
So i shall offer my advice about RO level design, or at least my experience

- Do your research - This is very importatnt otherwise most RO players will write off your map if it contains large innaccuracies. Im not saying that a map that isnt 100% can't be popular but it will have a greater chance of success.

- If you design your own static meshes make sure they are textured well, nothing ruins a good model better than a sloppy texture.


- Optimize : try and keep the amount of textures you use to a minimum and use the SM display distance feature as much as you can. Again people will not play your map if they get 5fps on it.
Good Advice! These 3 things in particular are what I'm really trying to get right on the map I'm working on as best I can. To the Devs: Can any of you tell me if Ostfronts scale actor is the same dimentions as the mods regarding width & height?
 

worluk

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 21, 2005
2,226
85
0
SavetheJets said:
- TEST,TEST,TEST.

if you are ready to do testing make sure to drop by in #roladder @ quakenet.
There are always players from clans,also some who are mapping, who are always willing to test the map.

Clanplayers tend to use the possibilities of a map to the max, they are a pretty good test audience.
If there is a place a mapper didnt intend to be used, they will find it.
 
Last edited:

PUTZ

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 21, 2005
4,563
634
0
Baltimore, MD, USA
Add me to the list of peoples who loooove to test custom maps. I would idle in IRC, but the campus routers block Port 6667. :(
 

Antigen

FNG / Fresh Meat
Jan 24, 2006
8
0
0
SavetheJets said:
So i shall offer my advice about RO level design, or at least my experience

- Do your research - This is very importatnt otherwise most RO players will write off your map if it contains large innaccuracies. Im not saying that a map that isnt 100% can't be popular but it will have a greater chance of success.

Hmm, I hope this isn't always true. I would rather use my imagination to try to think up maps, rather than pouring hours into research. Does this mean that if I create a map based on a fictional setting, no one will bother playing my map?
 

Antigen

FNG / Fresh Meat
Jan 24, 2006
8
0
0
Another question. I have only had a very very tiny bit of experience in 3D programs such as 3DS max and Maya, I was just wondering which of these would be more beneficial to learn really well? And if anyone knows how I can learn any of these programs(to the extent where I can make objects for maps) in a fairly quick amount of time, I would be greatful to hear your input. Mainly because I do not want to go through learning this and then by the time I can start making objects, no one plays the game anymore lol.
 

DingBat

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 21, 2005
751
0
0
Antigen said:
Another question. I have only had a very very tiny bit of experience in 3D programs such as 3DS max and Maya, I was just wondering which of these would be more beneficial to learn really well? And if anyone knows how I can learn any of these programs(to the extent where I can make objects for maps) in a fairly quick amount of time, I would be greatful to hear your input. Mainly because I do not want to go through learning this and then by the time I can start making objects, no one plays the game anymore lol.

Well, both are actually produced by the same company now. Both have quite a following in the 3d art world so I don't think there's much to choose from there.

I use Max, but I've been meaning to learn Maya. Either one will be quite adequate for work with UnrealEd. I know there are community mappers here that use Maya so, either way, you'll have people you can lean on if you get stuck.
 

FYROM

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 22, 2005
745
0
0
36
Georgia Tech
Antigen said:
Another question. I have only had a very very tiny bit of experience in 3D programs such as 3DS max and Maya, I was just wondering which of these would be more beneficial to learn really well? And if anyone knows how I can learn any of these programs(to the extent where I can make objects for maps) in a fairly quick amount of time, I would be greatful to hear your input. Mainly because I do not want to go through learning this and then by the time I can start making objects, no one plays the game anymore lol.

Well, Maya has the free Personal Learning Edition, which comes with an extremely top-notch tutorial program. I don't know if there's an equivalent version for 3dsMax.

http://www.alias.com/glb/eng/products-services/product_details.jsp?productId=1900003
 

UncleDrax

FNG / Fresh Meat
Oct 13, 2005
1,494
60
0
Florida, USA
www.endoftheworldfor.us
FYROM said:
Well, Maya has the free Personal Learning Edition, which comes with an extremely top-notch tutorial program. I don't know if there's an equivalent version for 3dsMax.

http://www.alias.com/glb/eng/products-services/product_details.jsp?productId=1900003

Blender is an Open Source modeling program that can be used also
The UnrealWiki has some info on this: http://wiki.beyondunreal.com/wiki/Blender

I started with Maya PLE, and it's pretty solid. Like FYROM stated, there is a pretty large support community for Maya, including the PLE.

There is also a Free version of 3dStudio called GMax, but I've never used it, and I'm unsure of it's Unreal Engine abilities.

.....
For those following, NO, you do not NEED 3d editor expereince.. In fact, you can make dozens of levels without ever touching one.. but if you want to make custom static meshes, you should learn to use one. It really helps to make your level come off better.
 

SasQuatch

FNG / Fresh Meat
Oct 17, 2005
1,010
213
0
Netherlands / USA
Let me add to this.

The first and foremost design concept that you will need to keep in mind is gameplay.

Gameplay gameplay gameplay. From what i've seen, people like different things, and that's the strong point in RO. Get it in your map.

  • Head on clashes and flanking
  • CQC and long distance firefights
  • Concentrate your fighting as much as possible by limiting the number of active objectives to 1 or 2 locations at a time.
  • Create freedom of movement and good flow.
  • Create good cover for the defenders, but make sure the assaulters have good cover too, so they can run from cover to cover, lay supressing fire for their team mates etc.
  • Keep your objective area's big, large, huge. This means most players will automatically enter the cap zones, and people automatically fight over them.
  • Also, for tank maps: Use just a few of the heavies in your map. It offers a challange for each team. A map with all panthers, tigers and IS2's is just throwing around hardware, without a 'danger boy' present. It plays the same as a map with all T34/85 and PIVF2's, but you miss the chance to add a few heavies on top of the heavies.
 

FYROM

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 22, 2005
745
0
0
36
Georgia Tech
SasQuatch said:
  • Keep your objective area's big, large, huge. This means most players will automatically enter the cap zones, and people automatically fight over them.

A little note on that - be sure to provide some cover from grenades, especially if the objective area is smallish. RoadtoBerlin is an awesome map, but the final objective is a small 88 AT position that's just a pit in the ground. The attackers have to huddle there in order to win, but a single nade will kill all of them.
 

SavetheJets

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 24, 2005
149
0
0
SasQuatch said:
  • CQC and long distance firefights
take a lesson from me and make sure the distance firefights are set up across a visible horizon, otherwise players will get frustrated from dying and not knowing who shot them. Also I'm pretty certain these types of maps are less nOOb friendly than other ones, so again you may get less play than a DoD-esque map.

FYROM said:
A little note on that - be sure to provide some cover from grenades, especially if the objective area is smallish. RoadtoBerlin is an awesome map, but the final objective is a small 88 AT position that's just a pit in the ground. The attackers have to huddle there in order to win, but a single nade will kill all of them.

I think that also has to do with the fact of elevation. Unlike other games, in RO when one team has a distinct height advantage they will often be able to stop the other team dead in their tracks. RtoB gives that advantage to the Germs and also provides them with more cover so they can easily toss off a nade before they are even seen.

One more thing make sure that both teams will have an about even distance to run to get to the obj. Nothing sucks more than dying and knowing that anyone you just killed will be back at the obj in half a sec while it takes you 5 min to get there.
 

Antigen

FNG / Fresh Meat
Jan 24, 2006
8
0
0
Does Maya PLE actually let you make objects for the game, or would someone need to purchase the retail version in order to be able to add those objects in game?
 

Lruce Bee

FNG / Fresh Meat
Oct 18, 2005
212
0
0
I think it actually shipped with UT2004 specifically for level designers to create meshes for their levels - I've never used Maya myself but as far as I'm aware you can import a mesh made in Maya PLE directly into the static mesh browser without the need for any plugins etc - I could be mistaken though

Lruce
 

masasa

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 24, 2005
196
1
0
Finland
My advices as normal player:

- Create something that the players haven't experienced before. Some new fancy layout, original atmosphere, something that makes it interesting to play.
- Safest approach for the sake of gameplay would be that FIRST think about what you want to do and THEN think about where that scenario would fit in WW2. If it doesn't fit to any specific battle, it really doesn't matter if the gameplay rocks. As long as it looks as it could have happened.
- Make the layout clear. You need to be in control on which routes the players are going to use and why and in which circumstances. Always think what is the worst thing that could happen in your map and how bad the gameplay would be affected. Few objectives and few basic routes to the objectives. If the layout is complex people don't learn the map and the map fails.
- If possible: No moving spawns. If the distances are getting too long, put some transports there. Moving spawns bring a whole shitload of problems concerning spawncamp, confusion and map balance.
- The classes: Don't just throw in unlimited rifles, 4 smg, sniper and commander. Think about what you want to include, how many, and WHY. And please don't think about realism at this point. "Well the russians were poorly equipped so they should get pistols while germans get a Tiger." Majority of the players doesn't give a **** about things like that as long as the gameplay and balance is good and the map works like a dream.
- Don't make dark maps. Evening is fine but night is pushing it. Settings of your screen define how far you can see and the gameplay can be confusing.
- Finish your maps layout, classes, objectives, theme, desing and looks on paper before you even start to making it. I would imagine that this makes the map making process alot faster and more controlled.


At the end I suggest something for a map:

My wish would be that we would get real outdoor maps with forest, hills, river, field, rocks, bushes, grass, cliff, swamp...

Is there even one map right now in RO mod without somekind of building? Tali-ihantala is nice but it is full of trenches and bunkers and the layout is crap concerning gameplay.

I'd imagine that making a map without buildings would be faster. I also think that if the map is good it would also get a lot of attenttion since it is something new and different.

Balancing an outdoor map shouldn't be hard either. Placing open field, river, cliff or other natures creation are effective ways to restrict unwanted wandering and make players go where you want them to go. Spawns could be protected with the same method that is used in Dubovicy(if you cross a certain line you instantly die).

If you want ideas for outdoor map layout, just ask me or go walk in the nature looking for ideas.
 

SavetheJets

FNG / Fresh Meat
Nov 24, 2005
149
0
0
Lruce Bee said:
I think it actually shipped with UT2004 specifically for level designers to create meshes for their levels - I've never used Maya myself but as far as I'm aware you can import a mesh made in Maya PLE directly into the static mesh browser without the need for any plugins etc - I could be mistaken though

Lruce
Actually with PLE you need a specific plugin called "UT2004exportforMAYAPLE" :eek: any other plugins wont work with the PLE version. Once its installed it creates a link to UED so that all you have to do is select a mesh and press export then save the package in UED.

edit: make sure that you DONT get ActorX that doesnt work with PLE
 
Last edited: