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Everything posted by Epifire

  1. Yeah editing the ruleset would be your best bet for that scenario I think. However that does really bring up the idea of different outcomes. It's a lot more gameplay to manage but I know you can set conditions in the level that will only activate, depending on the difficulty you chose (as the FM designer). I always wanted to do one with an RPG choice kinda spin. Where depending on the difficulty you chose, whole areas will either be added or removed; creating a much different experience.
  2. Say, I know it's been a while since the site got overhauled from the crash. But did we ever figure out if/how to get the recent topics & replies list back? It's not a total deal breaker but it was nice for becoming a thread creeper again...


    1. greebo


      I've added a post feed to the right panel, showing a few topics by start date.

    2. Epifire


      Oh awesome Greebo, you're the man! 😄

  3. Hello Aosys! I just happened to run past your thread here as I've returned recently to the forums myself. I might be able to help you here with your Substance Painter setup, as I use it exclusively now. You wont get a one to one render preview in Painter, akin to that of the properties you'll see in-game. However you can get pretty close. I do use the non-pbr mode but once you've got the settings and layers optioned correctly, it'll work. Firstly, are you using current versions? This is important as shaders and various versions of Painter have broke in the past (especially since Adobe bought them). I normally bake my Ambient Occlusion into my diffuse texture. Until (or really if ever) we get PBR in game, this shouldn't be changing; however baking the AO really helps if you're wanting dramatic lighting for cheap. If you can, try to multiply the AO over the diffuse texture in Photoshop and then save that to DDS. Personally I don't much like how powerful (and plastic like) specular effects are in TDM, so I usually will just end up with a final diffuse and normal texture. The only time I'd recommend blending the AO via mtr file is if you needed to preserve the UV's for the diffuse but had to multiply that over a tiling texture independently. Otherwise we can just cut down on the file consumption and go without the mask. Also, Greebo just made a file converter to take FBX to LWO. I use MayaLT now, so if you have to pull anything in from FBX; that can now be handled directly. It also handles vertex paints and smoothing options! This was a big requested feature from me and I'm really excited to start using it here myself. Greebo made it to work with his Dark Radiant upgrade project but it's also directly accessible via a batch file! So what this means is we'll be able to just save FBX to a mirrored directory and then run the batch file and it'll convert/copy the new LWO files to your chosen models destination. If you want, I can show you how I've got my Substance Painter setup for TDM too. I could probably best do that via screenshare over Discord, so lemme know if you'd like to do that at some point.
  4. Some of you who've been on the TDM discord know I was out of work last Winter, just putting in hrs for the developer portfolio. Currently I've been working a seasonal job to pay the bills and now I'm finally in my last week before I get bumped off. Things will be tight but I'm planning a long off period to make as much content as I can. Big plans in Unreal Engine as well as my most ambitious TDM collab yet! Never been so excited to be a stuck at home to pursue my life's work. With a lotta time and maybe some luck, I'm hoping to get enough art work done that I may start applying around to studios.

    1. Show previous comments  1 more
    2. nbohr1more


      Sorry about the job status but I am glad to hear that you will be doing some TDM things to sharpen your prospects :) Good luck!

    3. Epifire


      Thanks fellas!

      @NeonsStyleYeah I see CA's listings pretty frequently on ArtStation. Certainly making some cool stuff, however I just wish they had a branch state-side. 

      @nbohr1moreHonestly the job situation is what makes this possible for me. If I'm living within my means, unemployment benefits will keep me afloat while I make this a full-time endeavor.

    4. NeonsStyle


      Money or the lack thereof sucks balls. Hope you guys find a solution. @Epi, you can work online, that's a

      big thing today, n offers so many opportunities, but the work isolation is tough.

  5. Fantastic work Greebo! When you mentioned you were revamping the texture editor in DR, I had no idea it was going to be this in depth. This is nearing modeling app levels of accessibility and I know we've got a lot of mappers who are still purely working in the editor, vs making & importing meshes. Being able to skew UVs like that in a handy UI, is gonna be a godsend for people.
  6. Yeah man, I was able to play the game for a bit on a friend's Index and I'd definitely say some puzzles would be near impossible to do with mouse/keyboard inputs. I had to cancel my Index order (twice) due to the fact it only charges you the 1k, 8 months later when finances might want to say otherwise. Otherwise, I'm still planning on picking up VR gear to play it; just PC rebuild + car projects kinda took priority.
  7. If you're running advanced (I think it's maps?) lighting mode, you will actually have alpha tracing on your leaf-alpha cards unless it's disabled in the mtr. Topiary garden bushes are still a good bit of work in any engine, as it's hard to get looking 100% right without a lot of polys thrown at it. The only problem I myself had with this kind of modeling, is I never had a populate/scatter system to automate my leaf cards across the surface. Doing this by hand sucks but your poly count really starts to go up when you're using two sided planes for those tasty, tasty shadows. If you use decent sized leaf cards, they don't have to be as dense to fake the details. But one thing I'd recommend is to do your shape hull (stupidly simple) do a cage over that (running alpha leaves) and then your individual randomized cards on top of that. The dual cage method, if running a good material, will help soften the hard non-seethrough edges you'd get otherwise. Also, if the texture for the cage has really loose alpha, you could maybe have the two cages running shadows and noshadow the expensive leaf cards. Your dropshadow will capture those see through edges and still breakup your plant silhouette but at much less performance cost. Old old proof of concept here (not enough leaf cards either) but it gets away with less because of that dual hull method. With a better alpha texture for the secondary hull it would look even better. I think this one also had baked ground plane occlusion as a blend multiply and then in a separate layer tiled the leaf texture separately for the detail pass. Don't discount baked occlusion on stuff like this either. Just because we have SSAO now, doesn't mean it will create as dramatic of visual effect. The reason I'd do baked AO is to help contrast otherwise, featureless plant shapes. So my method would have two texture resources, a tiling base (with and without alpha) for the two primary hulls and one leaf set for the cards. Best of luck in any case, I'm just tossing my two cents out there!
  8. Half-Life 2 is definitely one I'd love to play again with no prior memory of it. EDIT: So I feel more obligated to explain my feelings as to why. HL2 was first and foremost something I played much later after it's release (with the Orange Box set) but I ran into it because of the want to mod something more accessible. At the time I was cutting my teeth on trying to learn Softimage XSI for models in the original Star Wars Battlefront. I wasn't a fan of needing some program called "Steam" to run it, however at the behest of a friend; I took first just grabbed the demo. I probably played that demo six times through before my copy of the Orange Box arrived at my buddy's house, I loved it that much. Up to that point I hadn't played anything that took it's physics or it's world experience that seriously. I think what still sells it for me today is how it feels like a single take experience, start to finish. It tries to realize it's environment as an actual place and continues to handle it as such. It both rewarded or punished the player if they did (or didn't) think ahead, so while being linear it still gave way to this feeling of play-it-how-you-want. Dishonored continued and expanded on that whole world realization in gaming, and given the heavy influence of Antonov; really explains that connection. You can probably imagine my disappointment when I couldn't continue the experience (Half Life Alyx) for my lack in VR gear.
  9. It really is true then, I'm so sad to hear the news. Grayman was always very open to working/advising with big and strange gameplay features I was throwing around. He was skilled in his craft but never placed himself over anyone else, and struck me as a very humble man. Be it the case, I am glad to have worked with him for the time that I did. He was always great to collaborate with and was very direct with any kind of models he needed from me. His presence will most certainly be missed here.
  10. I think what you would need to set the tone for a mission like this is to have new scary/irregular enemies that are creatively introduced. The biggest working component of what makes the Cradle work as good as it does is uncertainty. If you can get a new enemy that is brooding with unpredictable animations/pathing, you could do a lot right there. One way I always thought this fear factor could be done, would be through the means of making the enemy combatant more illusive and mobile than the player. In Thief games you normally have a vastly superior ability to outwit the dumb NPCs in the game. If that could be changed up or even leveled, I think it would be winner. In a separate project we talked about the possibility of seeing an NPC that could use a code/script, that would actually teleport it around the map. The attempt would be to paint an enemy that understands the area better than you. Trying to convey the undertones that you're in his domain. It would likely have to be some kind of behavioral controller (separate from the specified NPC) that would kick into gear in a alert state. We'd command the NPC to run to different targets (a trigger teleport door/vent). I don't think it would be easy but what you'd have is an NPC that can run through a panel behind you and emerge from another panel on the opposite side of the room. The theory would go that the controller would create a path target to the nearest tele region. The controller would then change that region's teleport target to the one closest to the player. The caveat would be that you'd have to find a way of reliably enabling/disabling the controller so that the NPC can go back to searching for the player as soon as the tele is done. That and you'd have to find a good distance value to the player that would toggle the control state again if the NPC gets alerted but is too far. Lotta mumbo-jumbo to some but man if that could be implemented, to me would be a crazy scary enemy. In my head I imagine something that looks kinda like the puppets, but would be able to navigate in the walls and play a deadly game of peekaboo.
  11. Older post I know, but my recommendation (from the modeling aspect) would be to use tiling materials for the large faces and model/bake out unique details for pillars, frames and corners on a single UV texture. What you basically could have is a three or four texture building that way, you only would want to focus on the cool detail bits as unique and then use a tiling texture for the upper and lower portions where the wall changes color/features. Otherwise it's an easy project for burn out if you don't prioritize what should be left as unique details and what can be fudged with tiling materials. I like to think of it as, frame the thing in with hand crafted details and fill in the gaps with tiling. Very cool building nonetheless, I do hope you push that to completion because it's a very unique and interesting design.
  12. If I'm reading this correctly I think it's just some needless complication I left in the material. As a matter of fact I'm not even sure why it has a local map when it's so tiny to really not need it. I was pretty extra back then but I'm 99% certain this is something off in the MTR. I'll make a note to self and check this when I wake up tomorrow.
  13. feather_duster_001.zip Okay, it's super lightweight as I didn't wanna kill the budget for a tiny carry-able but I think it'll do the trick. Give me a holler if something is up and I'll try to take a look at it!
  14. Alright, so here's the first pass. If you want it more dense with feathers I can add in more. The lighting is a bit harsh but I'm kinda running into the limitations of our lack in subsurface scattering. Or soft alpha filtering. Let me know what you think, it's super simple but I figured was about the detail you'd need. NOTE: it's only static so it'll need a collision hull treatment if you want it to be player-chuckable...
  15. Sorry I'm not near as active on the forums these days since pursuing the portfolio again but this could be quickly whipped up I think. If anything I'd just need to get a suitable material for the feathery parts to look... feathery. If Springheel provides a model, obviously we shouldn't need two but in the case that cannot be done I'm sure I could come up with something.
  16. While it seems like the next step at pushing boundaries, (which is what HL games tend to try and do) they intentionally didn't do this with HL3. I see this as a creative reintroduction to the series and my hopes are that we finally get some kind of EP2 sequel in the not so far future. As a major HL2 fan (that being the game that kept me in modding btw) still has me really stoked. That will however leave me very stoked and broke for the next couple months. ?
  17. Thanks! It happened to be the only map I had to test with water and a working cubemap already setup. However one day when I'm ready to get back to work on it, I'm hoping to reshape it into a neat FM.
  18. A new Gondola for Neon's project. (NOTE the background map isn't related to it). Still kinda swamped with stuff to do (and other requests!) but least to say the Epi is still cranking models here and there.
  19. Ahhh my bad, I thought the camera tutorial was just for the one that buzzes the alarm if it spots something. Yeah that looks to be the reference material I was needing. Just kinda wanting to reverse engineer some template so I think this will work.
  20. Yeah it's not working now on my end either. Trying to figure out why the hell we keep having so many outages in recent.
  21. Currently mission downloader is dead again. Where are we at with this? We've had several months and we're still running on a stand in forum, no bug tracker and I still haven't heard any news on what's being done to remedy this? I understand things take time but we're starting to lose more functionality rather than see things fixed. And it feels like we've had overall less traffic on the site because of it.
  22. Hey quick question, how do you get a camera position to be rendered in real time to a material surface? Wanting to create a neat effect but I'm having a hard time tracking down documentation on the matter.
  23. Yeah I think I messaged around asking anybody at one point if I could look at the current resources for it. A lot more busy just trying to wrap up current requests and getting back to the portfolio but I'd still like to help out on that again if I ever get the chance. Had talked to Kingsal at one point about what adding my own NPC's would take. So while I'm busy af right now, I'm still really keen on working with animations (especially since I'm now learning Maya). ? I just wish id4 had more broad plugin support with other, more modern modeling apps.
  24. It will probably have to change for me in the future but I hate drawing myself my own concept. It's a strange thing but I feel a lot more comfortable (usually) just hammering it out in the editor rather than going through a ton of concept. I do the thing where I take down notes that I toss on my desktop and usually refer to online references of the real thing I'm trying to attain the look of. But that's also from a modeler's standpoint where I do a lot of blocking and going over the design in the early stages of it anyways. However. Having very rarely been given 1:1 concept art, I will say knowing the shape and color pallet to something before even starting it blows my mind. I think drawing your own concept really depends on your workflow because I used to do it in the past but dropped it because it somehow gave me tunnel vision on the scope of the project right off the bat.
  25. I brought it up originally just to hear our coder's thoughts on the concept. As mentioned in the status, I'm a big advocate for implementing (or improving) tech already very well associated to other idtech branches rather than trying to overhaul it's core architecture. We can improve things within a certain degree but at present, even if you had new tech to run TDM on; you'd have to patch the majority of our assets just to render it correctly. What I really would like to see added to TDM follows as... -Parallax corrected cubemaps with batch node building and macro-asset assignment (possibly my most asked/requested feature). -Optional lightmap system for BSP brushwork. -Vertex paint mode for displacements/patches in DR. I rant all the time in the TDM chat about cubemaps because it's such a powerful yet underused feature in TDM. A: it's barely accessible and B: it's current projection method limits it's practical usage. Current cubemaps do not shift via the player's spacial coordinates and they're really a damned pain to create for them to be feasible. Source Engine cubemaps weren't a great deal better in the projection side of things but the build method was 50x better than what we've got. Bare in mind it still uses player position to take the six sided snapshots but it treats the cubemap nodes (placed by the mapper) as player coordinate data to batch build all cubemaps from a single console command. Would stringing together entity positions in a batch automation be that difficult to create in our instance? Lastly I bring up the cubemap assignment/usage. Probably the most painful part of our current system is it requires you to painstakingly create a new material definition for each time you want a new cubemap for a new asset position. My proposition before was to have a generic default block running a kind of if statement. Exactly as our param syntax can look for code additions, my idea was to have this generic block (in a cubemap optional material) look for a cubemap keyname. That if referenced in the model via spawnarg, the material would modify the expected path and fill in the cubemap keyname. This would mean you could have 10+ cubemaps all being based off the same parent material. No more custom MTRs for each! All the mapper would have to do then is drop in a cubemap node, match that node's keyname to a spawnarg on said model needing reflections; then build cubemaps via console command. A fair bit of additional framework I can imagine but that is the ideal situation I could see us benefiting from as a whole. Just improving what we already have, without needing Nvidia specific hardware.
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