Oswald Rant: Get the Perspective

Wow, I have been away just a bit too long since my last rant. This time around, I am truly out for blood and looking to enrage the mappers in the Urban Terror Community. When it comes to creating a high quality and flowing levels, some just don’t listen, while others make some attempt at tweaking their levels. We all know layout and texturing are two of the most talked about attributes when it comes to level design. A third and sometimes overlooked or forgotten point is scale.

Scale is defined as, “A proportion used in determining the dimensional relationship of a representation to that which it represents. This seems to have become a personal crusade of mine, one that had become evident in many Urban Terror levels.

Not only do mappers need to make sure their buildings, structures and doorways are in proportion to the real world and that the player model size, also need to maintain a realistic scale to boxes, crates and containers. Almost all maps whith boxes in their maps have them way too large. This is a common problem in many maps and therefore takes away from the ‘realism’ which is meant to be portayed in these maps.

Example #1: Land of the Giants?
When you think about this, when was the last time you saw a cardboard box twice the size of you. This is not realistic. Please think about this – for a box to hold something that is twice the size of you it would need to be made of something far stronger than cardboard. Again, how many times have you seen a box made of anything, twice the size of you? Only shipping containers and other such containers made of a metal would hold such weights (see bottom pic).


Example #2: Ammunition Boxes
These boxes (as shown in ‘Example #2’) hold small arms such as pistols and rifles. They also hold ammunition. Once again these objects are continually used in maps and are scaled way too large. These boxes should only come up to your knees. In order to use them as cover, you would need to stack a bunch of them together. That’s why I made the ammunition box/crate. This would only be the height of a human.


Example #3: Reversed Texturing
Another continuing problem we have seen in many third party levels are the that most textures are applied backwards. This is only a small problem – but still takes away from your maps quality. Please take the time to make sure your textures are around the right way. This should add to your maps quality.



Example #4: Military Crates at Your Work
This is happening way too much. Honestly, who stocks EXPLOSIVES at the office or around the home? Unless your one of Dr.Evils henchmen, this doesn’t usually happen. Please look at your level and think about where your map is situated and think if military boxes would really suit your maps environment before placing such items around your map. Finally here is a picture to help you with the recommended sizes which your boxes and crates should be according to your player model size.
The information provided in this document was created by Freak Storm, 2D Artist/Skinner for Silicon Ice Development.

Do you have what it takes?

Our interviews with the Urban Terror mappers continue this week. Recently we added, the following Silicon Ice Development mappers to our Interview Section: BattleCow, Bot Killer, The Riddle and WU. Give them a read and get inspired!Maybe you have noticed that the Action Quake 2 information is slowly beginning to go the way of the dinosaur here at The 6th Floor. Sorry A-Team! But look at it this way, you laid the foundation for many other realism mods. Thanks! On that note, you can check out the new Help Section for answers to any further questions. The same can be said for the Links Section. It even includes the new Urban Terror button to place on your site! While you are at it, grab The 6th Floor button also.Next on the agenda of reorganization, working on the required files, editors, tools and tutorials to get you started on your way to mapping heaven for Q3 and specifically, Urban Terror. There is an overwhelming amount of information out there, which could possibly deter someone from wanting to begin. I will help to wade through all the muck and help sort it all out.Not much news out of the Silicon Ice Development camp. The word came down from dokta8 and GottaBeKD, they have implemented ‘func_breakable’ in the Urban Terror code, which will allow for breakable glass. We have heard the mappers are quite excited about this new feature! He coders themselves were so excited they decided to throw rocks and play around in a glass for countless hours. Sounds like they need to be put in a white, padded room. Keep up the good work guys!

Oswald Rant: Urban Terror Development Team – Mappers

Although mapping is usually a task left to those in the community, the Urban Development Team did take on a few known mappers from Action Quake, along with a couple new names to create a core group of maps for the beta release. Although not all the mappers are included here with a bio, the team members are: Battle Cow, Gerbil!, Gimp, mourne, NRGizer, The Riddler and WU.

Mourne is currently working on his first mod in Urban Terror, but has been playing Quake since the beginning. Before that it was Wolfenstein and Duke Nukem. Another id Software fanatic!

“I love doing graphics stuff primarily Photoshop, but my main deal is computer hardware and software, mostly networking. I’m in college doing a Cisco networking program, and am 3/4 of the way thru it. I am then going to take a test and become CCNA certified.”

Most of mourne’s spare time is spent on workin on Urban Terror, creating maps. “I just finished Thief: Gold (one kick ass game)….I also play Action Half-Life and Action Quake 2…as soon as I can get my hands on Thief II, I am play that! Sometimes I load up SNES and play Chronotrigger, FF5, FF6 and Metroid 3.”

NRGizer is known in the Action Quake 2 community thanks in part to his contributions in the way of four maps, based on the small, west coast, Finnish town he lives in. “The maps I made for AQ2 were semi-popular, but I feel that I’ve really found my place now, where I can take advantage of the massive polycounts coming with the Q3 engine. Other than mapping I guess I’m a little of an all rounder when it comes to computers.”

His personal background includes all things Urban Terror and school. Before UT there was also time for some sports, like basketball and also some music. I live in a little town named Malax (6000 inhabitants), Finland. I’m going on my second year in Vasa Ovningsskola where I’m attending the IB programme.

WU is the final mapper and considers himself fairly proficient with Photoshop and loves to map, that is why he is on the Urban Development Team.

“I started mapping for Quake 2, but I never released anything due to quality (I was learning…hehe). I played AQ2 some, but probably not as much as the others. I played Rogue Spear addictively for a little while as well. Quake 3 1v1 is probably my favorite for now (until this beta comes out of course =P ). Being an lpb, I love q3dm17 (I’m a rail whore). Most of one map is done (the urban one in some of the screen shots), as well as a lot done of that beach house map. I have never done realistic mapping, so this has been a bit of a learning experience for me. Well, I really have to get to mapping now or else this map won’t be done in time for the beta.