Sunday 20 December 2020

DM-Laputa Rework

 The last few weeks I've been doing a major rework of my original map DM-Laputa.

No that's not Spanish. The name was inspired by the anime movie  "Laputa: Castle in the Sky". 

Just about everything has been reworked from layout, item selection / placement and spawns to meshes, materials, textures and emitters. The old version was far too open with great sightlines everywhere so I added a lot of sight blockers (rocks, walls, towers, trees, etc.) to fix that. There's quite a bit more vertical variation too, lots of level changes to make the gameplay more interesting and fun.

There are climbable (walkable actually) ladders in a few places and don't forget to try some barrel racing.

I'm waiting on feedback from a few testers before releasing a new version to the public but hope to release one before Christmas. Anyhow, way too much changed to easily list most of it here, so here are a bunch of screenshots.

Sunday 6 September 2020

September free for the month

 September has been a good a month for free UE4 marketplace asset packages. Besides the two mentioned in my previous post, the September "free for the month" packages were released a little later. I plan to use two of them.

First there's Bunker, a nice, very modular set of meshes for making underground bunkers.

It can be installed on Unreal Engine 4.16 or higher and uses very simple materials so it's quite easy to down port to a lower engine version like 4.15.0 for Unreal Tournament 4.

Packing the demo map in UT4 filesize comes in at over 1.1GB but that's with a lot of 4k and 2k textures. By simply LoD biasing to reduce texture sizes to 2k/1k I got it down to a little over 120MB with not much loss of visual quality. Packing the metallic, roughness and ao textures into MRA maps would reduce it even further.

The other new package is Starsphere. Something that is very lacking in UT4. Similar to the skysphere blueprint only for space skies and more versatile.

This is a very small but quite good package available for UE4 4.12+ (I wish I'd noticed that before porting it by hand from 4.25 to 4.15). Besides the many adjustable parameters for stars, it has parameters for things like space dust, blackholes, novas, Saturn and the Sun. There is also a planet blueprint with panning textures that make the planets look like they're rotating with different speeds for surface and clouds, have atmospheres and includes textures for Venus, Earth and Mars.

Friday 28 August 2020

Factory Environment

I just found this new permanently free package on the UE4 Marketplace. Downloading it now but it looks like an amazing pack for industrial / factory interior maps.

Factory Environment Collection

854 unique meshes!

There's another new permanently free pack up too.

I might have to use that croc somewhere.

Sunday 16 August 2020

DM Titan Fortress

 I've been working for a while on a large new deathmatch map, tentatively named Titan Fortress.

To keep the filesize down I decided to mostly use assets from CTF-TitanPass. I started with 2 meshes (mirrors of each other) that make up the ground in TitanPass mid and added castle wall / tower assets from the UE4 Vehicle Game demo.

After trying a bunch of different things and finding the filesize kept getting too big very quickly I eventually decided to use several more ground meshes as well as the "skybox" / background setup from TitanPass too. That reduced the filesize significantly but makes the map more similar to TitanPass than I wanted, hence the name. If you're very familiar with TitanPass you'll definitely get deja-vu on this map.

Then I made a landscape material and a few custom ground meshes. I also added some odds and ends from other sources. Barrels, gargoyles, banners, metal spikes/spires and so on.

Here are some screenshots showing progress made so far.

The lower middle parts of the map probably won't change too much from what's in the screenies above but I'm still working on blocking out the layout and meshing behind the highest walls on both sides of the map.

Let me know what you think!