And thus a pack of three maps from RJA. Let me say right off the bat, that I'm somewhat disappointed, and in simple terms, here's why:
Third Deathstar Reactor Room - Textures Bland texture usage on the main shaft, you chose a texture that's far too small, tiles far too many times, and isn't suitable at all for what you're using it for. Personally, I would've gone with factory/outerwall_pipes, although I would've darkened and blackened the texture in Photoshop first. Larger textures designed for mechanical wall panels, should be used in said way, whereas border panels are just that, border panels. The key is picking which textures will tile properly for your chosen surface.
The fact that you similarly chose to use that same texture for almost every other surface in this room, just lessens it's effect. You also failed to apply system/caulk on many of the surfaces it should have been applied on.
- Lighting The lighting in this room is a real enigma, RJA. In some cases, you've got perfectly atmospheric, blended lighting, yet in others you've got unsourced light entities which stick out like crazy and just look.... well, tawdry. You've shown you can use light entities to a good effect, yet just a few meters away shown a lack of discipline.... which is confusing, to say the least. You can do good lighting, you've shown that; try for consistency.
- Architecture The architecture is nothing special, mostly standard beginner mapper fare. However, one thing I would say, is that the method you used for creating those cylinders? So not the most efficient way of doing it.
Overall the map is mostly blocks, but at least usage of the clip tool has been exhibited. Overall, I can't help but feel RJA needs to experiment a little more on some variational architecture rather than going with basic squares. Experimentation breeds innovation, as I've said somewhere before.
- Error! Ah yes, we can see into the void by looking up or down. Oh my. The reason is that RJA left the visual rendering range set to default, but made an open space exceeding that range. One way to repair this is by using the distancecull key in the Worldspawn entity's parameters, and setting it to a higher value (12000 is default). Another way would be simply reducing the distance of the architectural elements - it's really not necessary to have all this empty space, you could use illusion work to make the shaft appear much, much taller than it is, with black fog and the fade-kill effect.
Ancient Sanctuary Ah, now this is more like it. We begin to see improvement.
This map tends to be rather stale in it's texture and lighting choices. A little more variation goes a long way, and sadly there are still areas where lights are clearly entities and not part of the map's atmosphere. And the blue in the start area - good grief, we're not playin' World of Warcraft. ;)
Ancient Sanctuary is leaps and bounds ahead on interactivity, there are platforms with specifically-positioned invisible buttons which will transport you around, there's the age-old falling platforms. Oh, and lava. Lava which is actually solid. Okay... Architecture in this map is more complex than the former, but still not up to what RJA's capable of, I'm afraid to say. Visually, the lava could look better, given how it's large solid cuboids of what is meant to be a liquid. Just something to consider for later - remember that you can freely make smaller and smaller brushes by changing Radiant's grid size or by disabling snap to grid.
Be warned, that once you reach the end of this assault course, the only way you're getting out is the way you came in. And you can't escape back to the starting area anyway. Since that's where the weapons and ammo are found, this map strikes me as more of an assault course than a combat map.
The Elevator V2 No elevators here, oddly enough. Just a chain of boxy hallways. There's one room with a wall-maze area, followed by two hallways which are again too lengthy - lengthier than the distancecull setting, as you can see into the void yet again producing a Hall Of Mirrors effect... without any mirrors. At the end of these hallways, two boxy shafts with jump pads. We now find ourselves at what appears to be the bottom of an overgrown shaft with several columns of platforms. Seemingly no way to progress further.
Same problems as the prior maps applies, dead basic architecture, primitive unblended lighting, etc. Granted with this map, there were more than three textures total used. Major scaling issues, though.
Personally, I doubt these maps were even tested. No doubt if they were, RJA would have refined them, troubleshooted them, and asked for assistance if needed. Frankly, though, I have few doubts about one thing - RJA could have done far better than this. No lessons learned, no tries at improvement, it seems, and that's saddening.
RJA, for your next maps, try and push your boundaries, and don't be afraid to ask for advice and tips on our forums. It's what we're here for.
Bot Routing: No Custom Textures:[/b Yes [b]Custom Music: Yes Custom Meshes: No
INSTALLATION: Put the pk3 file in gamedata/base directory AUTHOR: RJA FILE: RJA_mappack-v2.pk3 DESCRIPTION: This is a small map pack (3 FFA maps). This is the Version 2 of RJA_map-packv1. THE MAPS: RJA - Third Deathstar Reactor Room: -Giant reactor, great generator. Great. RJA - Ancient Sanctuary: -Lava sanctuary, great, very beautiful. RJA - The Elevator V2: -Version2 of Elevators map of RJA_map-packv1. CREDITS: LEVELS: me TEXTURES: -Lava: Sith J Cull (sjc_mustafar) -other: Jedi Academy and me.
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