Beams

Discussion in 'Maps, Textures, and Graphics' started by marc1967, Apr 6, 2015.

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  1. marc1967

    marc1967 Established Member

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    What do most people think about the beams that are used in the artworks for most of the interior game maps. Are they liked, hated, or "doesn't matter"? I'm talking about the ones that cut across the top of where the wall would be to simulate the interior like in the Inn for example. I personally think they really destroy the beauty of much of the artwork, and cut into the open feel of the interior. The door frames would be ok, and maybe the corner posts.

    I'm asking because I am laying some of my new map interiors over the old interiors to benefit from the clipping data, but I would prefer to NOT have the beams there. Fortunately, in many cases there is a separate clipping file for the beams and they can easily be removed. Should I leave them in for any reason, or go with my desire to remove them based on personal taste?

    Here's an example, in case it isn't clear what I'm referring to:

    Beams.jpg

    They actually don't look too terrible in that picture, but in a lot of cases they really crowd out the artwork.
     
  2. Sitra Achara

    Sitra Achara Senior Member

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    I wouldn't miss them.
     
  3. DarkStorm

    DarkStorm Established Member

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    Animated light rays from the window would be nice, heh.
     
  4. Shiningted

    Shiningted I want my goat back Global Moderator

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    Light like that is important, definitely.

    Screeg included beams for KotB so there may be an artistic reason for it, but its a lot of unnecessary SVBing and such: I say leave them out.
     
  5. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Actually the clippers alone are all you need for those. Very narrow areas can feature total blockage behind because only limited parts of critters disappear. So no svb work needed really. :)

    My personal preference is to have them there, because I think they help to quantify the dimensions of a room to the viewer, but your mod so your call obviously.
     
  6. marc1967

    marc1967 Established Member

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    Thanks for your input guys, it seems there's quite a variety of opinion.

    Ted, I noticed in most of the KOTB art (such as the tavern) they are not there, and I though it really looked nice that way, and got me thinking to not have them for my own maps. They were probably excluded because there was no way to create unique clipping files for them, but it worked out better I think.

    Here's a quick and dirty removal of the beams from the example I gave in the original post. I think it looks better imo, as you would see all the figures without blockage. As I said earlier, I think isn't the best example, as it looks pretty good in this particular art to begin with. I left the corner beam to give the room definition.

    map1-int28-carpenter-day.jpg

    On a related topic, the art in the Hommlet maps and in the whole game altogether really are fantastically done. I think they used 3D models for much of it, but they managed to make it look like it was all drawn freehand. In searching for info on all this, I came upon one of the most interesting articles I've ever read on the creation of the game. It's written by Tom Decker: The Temple of Elemental Evil Wrap Report

    I'm sure many of you have read it, but one of the quotes that grabbed me related to maps was this:

    "The other big problem caused from sticking with the original module was that the dungeon maps just don't translate well to an isometric computer game. Making lots of 10 by 10 rooms to fill in every space on your piece of graph paper might be cool for your pencil and paper experience, but you can't even see the ground in the computer game. Needless to say, we had to scramble a LOT near the end to widen hallways, combine rooms and knock down walls (I kept thinking of the quote from Johnny Dangerously, "this place is too small, we need to knock down that wall, knock down that wall, and knock down THAT fargin' wall.") Combining rooms often meant combining monsters and changing encounters a bit too. Had we re-designed the levels up front with our isometric view in mind, this time could have been spent much better on scripting some of the cooler special encounters such as unconcealing more monsters (like in the minotaur "statue" room), making Thrommel appear to be a vampire at first, having a falling grate in the pillared hall with the harpies, and other memorable encounters from the module. "
     
  7. Shiningted

    Shiningted I want my goat back Global Moderator

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    Now you're making me wish I finished the Vampire mod I tinkered with years ago :( Sitra got the harpies done.
     
  8. DarkStorm

    DarkStorm Established Member

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    Btw this is the type of light rays i meant: [​IMG]

    With nice animations ofcourse hehe.
     
  9. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    You mean animations like swirling dust motes and so on? Static rays could be drawn into the art fairly easily.
     
  10. DarkStorm

    DarkStorm Established Member

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    Yup I mean the animated variety. I guess gmeshes or whatever they're called would be ToEE's method of choice to do those.
     
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