I however rented a server and it is running the latest version of de_pharaoh on it 24/7. Please feel free to use it and play with your friends there.
24/7 DE_PAHRAOH SERVER: 22.214.171.124:27045
To get even more bad luck, the map was corrupted on the version that ECG gaming was going to help me test. This meant that no one could download the compressed bz2 file from the server. So I couldn't get any gameplay feedback.
Slow and pretty much lost week. All of February was spent pretty down on energy from illness. I am hoping that this means the rest of the year will be clear out.
Then on Thursday I pushed out a new update to pharaoh, and the new CSGO lighting test meant that compile times are now up to 2 hours and 30 mins! So when I publish a new change that means it will take all day to do that. As I have to compile twice: a radar map (I have to remove the coaster and some roofs to allow better radar visibility) and the actual playable map.
So without any more delays the changes!
Supplies and Trash
Supplies got changes. New truck model, props, and some height changes to the floor. Also expanded it a bit and changed the cliff next to it. Now the coaster will go through a tunnel on it's first drop. This solves the issue of hiding the tracks properly on the out bounds area, while looking cool. It looks great in my opinion. I also modeled a new fence which was on my list to do, so I upgraded the fence visually. It looks better now, more theme parkish and happy. I was inspired by Parkitect's design on it, but giving it a more real look with it's detail and chamfers.
The change into pavement of a part of that corridor gave it a nice change of contrast. Just a small addition of props changes the tone of the whole zone and makes it more believable. I really liked how it turned out. The use of the color property for the bins also aids with breaking out monotony. Even though it's the same trash bin prop, the color changes it's designated use.
Then I replaced the area behind the hedges with some displacement grassy hills. It looks better and removes that feeling of hallway all the time. Players won't ask themselves what is on the other side, because they can see it. I also like how it looks, the hills breaks out any patterns and there is a whole unified themed in the maintenance area.
I also replaced some hedges with wooden fence on the area between bombsite B connecting to gift shop. So it;s much cheaper now. I also wanted to use more of the wooden fence props there. Trying to get more use out of my time invested in making the wooden fence set.
I really like how scaffold looks. I had the chance to show what are the walls really made out on the queue area. It tells you that the walls are just fake bricks, painted over on top of some real grey bricks. The hole also breaks out the pattern on Tomb and the scaffold breaks the pattern on the exit hallway. I think that the maintenance area is getting better and more finalized with every change I make which is good. I also found the scaffold was too short for the height I had placed the opening. I simply took inspiration from Mexican labor and added some concrete blocks to lift it up. The height now fits great and those blocks look really nice, it's a little bit of detail that also has a purpose.
I had some issues with the safety net transparency which I finally fixed, but after I had compiled the map, so it has many shadows where there should be none. I will have to see next week how the light system behaves with the net. I hope I will get some nice crisp mesh shadows on the floors. Those should look neat.
Lockers and Infirmary
I also added a safety net on that zone. Coaster goes over guests head, so guests have to be safe from falling objects. Because of the transparency issue the lockers are too dark. I hope that with that issue fixed, the lighting system will take care of it and offer great illumination. If not I will have to add artificial lights.
I am still not sure of lockers though. infirmary will stay out there, it;s a good call out point. But maybe I am thinking of having some kind of prop where guests can take pictures. Some statue or I don't know. I need some ideas and suggestions there. For now lockers will do, and I don't have a problem of they staying if I don't come up with something better.
I changed the access to the vents. I had too many jewelry stands, and more props there would mean more expensive the zone. So I took some vending machines from newke (I really love newke's assets! In case you have not noticed) and placed them there. You can navigate around it and it fits. Many gift shops also have vending machines in them.
Still lots to do with gift shop. I need to make way more props for it, and texture the roof. But I think it should come out in final form soon. I can place a bunch of wire from newke on the ceiling too for extra detail.
I never liked the hedges in restroom. The blocked bullets, so they didn't make sense for the player, but players could hide very well on them. I decided to grab some props I made for Parkitect (Before working on de_pharaoh) and see what I could use from there. The obelisk I am very proud of, so I decided to make it bigger and place it on the entry area and the restroom zone. I like how it looks. It provides better cover and can be climbed on, allowing some vertical gameplay elements.
I then also modeled a new entry zone to the section the park base on some reference images. I like how it turned out. The sitting pharaoh at the gate whoever, seems to have it's smoothing groups messed up. Many of the Parkitect models I made seem to have it's smoothing groups messed up so the shadowing is off there. I will have to fix that. I also have to do some color tweaks, so that it fits better with CSGO and the map's color palette, as CSGO has some low saturation colors overall. Which I am not stuck with necessarily, as a theme parks are generally colorful. It's an interesting and challenging blend. Which is great because this means players can quickly identify enemies in the map.
I also modeled some metal ad walls. the kind of wall you'd see covering construction site. So I will use those to block of some visibility areas, while still allowing for some optimization going on. And I edited emergency exit with newke props and with a safety net. Again, too dark, but I hope with the transparency issue solved, it will be brighter there.
I hope I can get some play testing sessions arranged out. I've been dying to play the map in a full server. There is so much you can do with players that bots will not do. Stacking, preparing nades, positioning, aiming, etc.
As always, below is the layout at the end of week 7. I can't wait to finish the map and do a video of the layout changes from top. It will be interesting to see how it developed.