I did a lot of work on some textures tweaking some colors, some values. Some other polishing on certain areas of the level. A lot got done, but a lot is also still not finished. So, I used the weekend to compile the radar version of the map. It was outdated, and so I decided I could work on that soon. A radar imaged updated is critical for future testing of the levels.
Radar and Callouts
I haven't looked much into the navigation call out names. Seems like the game won't accept custom call outs, which is a bummer. I will look into it, and lets hope it will be possible.
Unrepresentative Images Ahead
I grabbed a sand texture from the Substance Designer Share site. I had to do some modifications to it, so that it would fit with my guests' area art style. Mostly changing the normal and the color balance. I find it insane that when I look at something the color looks fine, but once I bring it into the game it looks way off, when I could swore that the colors would match.
Next up, is the Cliff texture. It got a lot of tweaks out. I changed the color scheme, and the way I grabbed the normal out of height maps. Now it looks more fake natural. As in, you can believe the relieves that the texture has. It is also slightly more red-ish, which means it's less noise. It fits much better with the park art style. It's more Team Fortress-ish looking, but I am fine with it. I also love the fact that in fast pass, enemy readability is greatly improved. The old version just had too many black spots as well as the normal being so noisy.
Finally I created a new texture to use in conjunction with the hieroglyphs. I took inspriation from the Temple of Anubis map in Overwatch. Had to do it with the map's style. It breaks down the repetiveness of the hieroglyphs over and over. I like the extra color it adds to the map. I still have some people telling me that the hieroglyphs in some palces are too much, so I have to think of something for certain areas. I have some ideas, but might require some redoing in geomtry. I dunno, I hope to try it out this week. It's also based on something Overwatch did on it's Egyptian map.
There is still more to do. It's a room that looks the least developed in the map I think, Even though I think I've spent a lot of time on it. Still it could be better. I have some ideas to make it look better while not getting in the way of the gameplay.
For now, the test went OK. There is some issues with transparency and clods, as the rendering can be tricky with the usual transparency variable. I can use a cheaper transparency bit, which results in cheaper rendering, but the edges look very sharp, like if there is no Anti-aliasing. In the end, I prefer the sharp edges, over the clouds being rendered all wrong and breaking the illusion. I will still try out to fix that up.
I don't know when I will get to that. As I said, lots to do!
I also started working on the soundscapes. They are great, they enhance the level a whole lot, but also takes more time than I thought. I thought I would just grab soundscapes from other maps and place them in and done, but nope, some are custom made for the maps they are in, so I decided to just do it the right and long way, which is to create my own soundscapes for the various places in my level. This means it will take more time to make, but the ambiance of the map in the end will be much more believable and detailed. I can't wait to finish those of.
I also started work on the radar image, which you can partially see at the beginning, but I will show below. I redid it almost from 0, so that I can get a more precise fit of the layout in the radar. It looks great I think, still not final. There are certain props and brushes getting in the way, and I need the final compile for the background of the radar image. I love looking at old radar images of the map, and seing it evolve over time. I can't wait to make the final blog post. I am excited to finish this project and have it all play it.
For next week, I hope to finish up the soundscapes. I hope to clear out again my notes. Then, I hope to have an optimized skybox as well as some final detailing there. Maybe if I finish the skybox I wil feel like I am more ready than what it currently feels like.
I thought I could finish the map by the end of June, and that is my aim. But we are almost at mid June and still lots to do. However, July will be quite busy, I have a trip planed which will take me out for around 2 weeks. I will see how development goes.
And finally, the top view (Radar Version)! Enjoy!