ESReality - Where Gaming Meets Reality
Not Logged In | Login | Register
19:34 CST - 319 users online
All Posts
Keys and One-Time Events (3 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 19:53 CDT, 23 March 2021 - iMsg
The map "Elder" from Quake Live is notable for introducing two new game mechanics:

- Keys and locked doors. The player with the key can open the door while the player(s) without it cannot. Elder only had a silver key and silver key door, but there is also a gold key which functions identically, as well as a "master key" which is designed to open both silver and gold key doors, however neither of these keys were used in any official maps, although the QL workshop probably has a few that utilize them.

- Permanent map change events, which come in two flavors: ones that automatically kicked in after a set period of time, and others that could be triggered by the player via buttons. Doors or platforms would open and never return back to their closed position once they did, so the entire state of the map is irreversibly altered, as opposed to traditional triggers which only temporarily change the state of the map for a short period of time.

From what I remember this map was rather controversial. Was this because of the map design, the game mechanics it introduced, or a combination of both?

In any case this discussion is not about the map Elder. It's about these two game mechanics. They seemed really interesting and yet none of the "modern" arena FPS games which came out after this map, nor CPMA which is still in active development, took any interest in them. I've thought about implementing them in Uber Arena too, though I've mainly been focused on my own mechanics like trampolines.

Keys are like a third type of major item alongside the RA/MH, except instead of granting a higher stack they grant higher map connectivity/mobility. The permanent events add dynamism to the map and allow it to "evolve" over time, forcing changes in tactics as the game progresses.

Notably, these are both map-specific mechanics, so they don't affect the entire game and the maps can be designed to accommodate them. So I don't see why keys and permanent map change events are fundamentally bad ideas. If the map plays bad and it has these two mechanics that should be the fault of the map design, not the mechanics themselves.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 19:55 CDT, 23 March 2021 - 2294 Hits
The nature of randomness and short-term memory in AFPS (15 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 16:06 CST, 15 February 2021 - iMsg
So in my mod Uber Arena, one of the taglines I emphasize in promoting it is that it "uses no random number generators" in its game mechanics. That is, every new mechanic is designed to be 100% deterministic and predictable - in theory. But I've been thinking about this and wondering, just because something is not using RNG, does that mean it is indeed 100% skill-based and predictable?

One counterexample I can think of is the headshot system in Unreal Tournament, something that has proven to be a point of major controversy between the UT and Quake crowds, likely because of disagreements about the nature of predictability in game mechanics. So in UT, if you can headshot a player, you will almost always instantly frag them (or at least do significant damage). Obviously, to accomplish this, you have to "go for the head" (as Thor/Thanos would put it). Now, in theory, this is a 100% deterministic mechanic; it is based on a predictable variable - the position of the enemy player's head on the screen and how much screen space the head is occupying (closeness of the player). It seems like there would be no issue. Yet, headshots are often regarded as "random" despite, technically speaking, not being so at all.

The argument here is that, even though it is theoretically predictable, the amount of precision required to pull off headshots using actual skill rather than luck is so great that it exceeds human capabilities, even at top-level tournament play. The railgun, on the other hand, while also requiring good aim, is not so "hard" that a skilled player can't learn how to become a good RG user, as the area that needs to be hit is larger.

It seems, then, that there is a point at which, if a deterministic mechanic becomes sufficiently complex, it "degrades" into randomness because the player cannot feasibly track all of the variables, a phenomenon we'll call "decay into randomness". And to be fair, it's not like RNGs used in games are really random either; it's common knowledge that they use pseudo-randomness generated by seeding the computer clock and performing complex math to output a seemingly random result. Obviously, no one would seriously be expected to calculate RNGs like this on-the-fly in the middle of a heated arena FPS match.

The question is, at what point does "decay into randomness" occur? Where do you draw the line? What are the variables? Is there a formula or algorithm to describe it? For example, in the case of the headshots vs. RG, how small does the area to be hit need to become before it "becomes random"? There is disagreement here, since some argue headshots are skillful and you just need to be good enough to aim at the head consistently, and others feel that is too much to expect out of even the most skilled players and thus it's pure luck. Who is right?

There is also Miller's Law from psychology, or the "Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two", from George A. Miller's famous 1956 paper, where he postulated that the human short-term memory capacity (roughly) ranges from 5 all the way to 9. This principle does put a cap on how many variables a player is reasonably expected to track in an arena FPS match. In a duel, for example, the player is likely timing the RA and MH, as well as attempting to derive the other player's position based on sound cues, which already takes up 3 "slots". If they're tracking another, lesser armor, that's another slot taken. And likely other, more subtle variables too. Once the capacity is exceeded, the player will have to start "dropping" game variables to keep track of and leave them to chance. Adding more things for a player to keep track of adds more skill up to a point, but once you reach the memory limit (which is made more complicated by its fuzziness), it could be argued that too many mechanics/variables might actually decrease skill. Is this true?

Finally, it seems there are some random game mechanics that do appear in competitive play, but are generally considered to be "acceptable". For example, in TDM, while the respawn times for power-ups are fixed, the initial spawn times are randomized. Why is this "okay"? Wouldn't it still be better if they were fixed as well, so players could time the initial spawn as well? Or is there something to be gained from making it random that somehow adds more skill, contrary to the intuition that randomness removes skill? (In Uber Arena, it's worth noting that initial spawn times are also fixed, at 45 seconds into the game, making them completely predictable)

I think this is a really fascinating topic and it would give some good insight into the nature of arena FPS design. Is there anyone with a good background in psychology that could provide more insight? Has there been previous research done on this?
4794 Hits
Directional Gravity in Arena FPS (9 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 00:23 CDT, 18 September 2020 - iMsg
One of the ideas that I originally wanted to implement in Uber Arena, but halted progress on due to technical limitations / roadblocks (mainly with getting mouse controls to work correctly with angle changes, and I think some of it is buried in the engine source code rather than the Q3 game code), was the idea of directional gravity.

At its most basic, directional gravity would be stuff like walking on walls and ceilings, with items also being located along these planes. But the idea can also be expanded to work with any angle in any direction, allowing for smooth transitions. So you could have a smooth ramp from the floor to the wall, and likewise another from the wall to the ceiling.

To prevent breaking maps, directional gravity would only be enabled on specific surfaces. To allow for strafe jumping the player could "float" a certain distance away from the surface normal, but after a certain distance would "detach" from the gravity field and return to normal gravity. Though that's just one possible idea and maybe there's a better way to handle that.

This idea is pretty simple but would undeniably add a lot of possibilities to level design for arena FPS, much like trampolines, which are in fact implemented in Uber Arena.

The 2006 Prey game is a good example of a game that has tackled antigravity surfaces like this. Portal 2 also initially planned to have a purple gel called the Adhesion Gel which would have this same property, though it was scrapped because it allegedly made playtesters sick.

That whole sickness thing might be a potential roadblock, though who knows how Valve implemented their version of it. Perhaps there is some way that antigravity surfaces could be integrated into arena FPS while ensuring that players don't get sick using them. Ideally, strafe jumping across directional gravity ramps would, if implemented properly, be just as natural as strafe jumping across a flat surface. The transitions should be silky-smooth.

What do you, the players, think?
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 00:24 CDT, 18 September 2020 - 5341 Hits
What's the current consensus on the Champions mechanic? (63 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 03:03 CDT, 16 August 2020 - iMsg
Keep in mind this thread is only about the Champions mechanic (primary / secondary abilities; weight classes; cooldown pickups), and nothing else. Things like netcode, framerate, visual clarity, other gameplay components, etc. are not relevant to this discussion. That isn't to say that they're not important, because they are and there's definitely some pressing issues there, but they're separate from the Champions mechanic and they've been discussed quite a bit elsewhere.

Because I love reading interesting discussions and in the interest of doing some research, I'm curious to know, after 3 years, what the current thoughts are on the Champions gameplay mechanic.

Hate it? Love it? Used to hate it but now like it, or vice versa? Like the idea but not the execution? Like some of the champions but not others? Some are overpowered / underpowered perhaps? Too many champions? Maybe you don't care for how champions are unlocked / accessed? If you feel like Champions aren't a good mechanic, what other new mechanic would you propose to replace it?

Will be interesting to hear your thoughts.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 03:04 CDT, 16 August 2020 - 15001 Hits
Uber Arena (55 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 23:13 CDT, 25 May 2018 - iMsg
Download version 0.5:

Play Uber Arena online:

Hello arena gladiators,

I'm incredibly excited to announce my new Quake III Arena mod, Uber Arena. I've been working on this on-and-off for a while as a hobby project to practice software programming in a familiar context outside of just writing boring console programs. I'm now in university taking classes for computer science with the hopes of eventually finding some good-paying programming jobs, but while I definitely have more serious aspirations in the realm of software engineering, that certainly doesn't mean I can't have a little bit of fun building some personal projects for my favorite games. I really enjoy the feeling of finally solving tough problems, which this mod has offered plenty of (and still has a few yet to be taken care of), but it has undeniably been very educational as well. And with Quake 3's 20th anniversary coming up next year, I suppose now is a good time as any to get started if you're going to be modding for such an old game, hehe :p

As for the mod itself, Uber Arena is not a total conversion or major overhaul of Quake 3, but rather is a collection of new game mechanics and items that extend the base game experience in a manner that attempts to remain true to Quake's core principles such as on-spawn equality. There are no abilities, loadouts, or similar concepts that would cause players to spawn with different setups. Just as with the original game, item control and positioning are absolutely key to being successful. The specific methods employed will be radically different, but the overall fundamentals are unchanged. I tried to come up with some interesting ideas that most arena FPS games, or perhaps FPS games in general, do not consider.

Uber Arena has the following features:
- 5 new and/or modified game mechanics
- 3 new power-ups
- 2 new holdable items
- 3 miscellaneous items (2 of which use a modified backpack model / skin made by DaEngineer)
- 1 new map-specific mechanic
- 3 remixes of older maps to test the new mechanics, including 2 revisions of classic id software
Quake 3 maps and 1 user-made map by community designer Tigger-On, used with permission.

See the documentation provided in the link below for more information about the new features included in Uber Arena:

This mod is, as you might expect, very VERY work-in-progress - particularly visual / stylistic effects. Right now I am more concerned about functionality and bug fixing though.

Some known bugs that I'm still working to get ironed out:
- Item knockback doesn't interact well with items on movers.
- Trampolines occasionally send you bouncing much higher than you should. This behavior is rare and I haven't been able to consistently reproduce it; it seems very RNG-ish.

Also keep in mind that bots haven't been optimized for the mod yet at all. I need to do some more research on modifying Quake 3 bot code for mods. I have a feeling that bots will never be able to learn to use trampolines very well (at least not without an entirely new .aas compiler, which is way beyond my level of knowledge), but I can imagine the other mechanics being workable.

Also if you have some older custom maps that you think would work great with some of the new items - particularly trampolines - feel free to share! I'd love to see what you come up with.

DOWNLOAD (Version 0.5):
Have fun and enjoy - I'm really looking forward to seeing what your thoughts are!

I'm particularly interested in what the ESReality community has to say, since I know many people here have much detailed knowledge and commentary to provide. Positive and negative feedback alike is appreciated - I just enjoy reading detailed discussions. :)

- Do you think any of these concepts would have competitive viability? Would they add a new layer of strategy in your opinion? Do you feel that they stay true to the spirit of Quake? What are the reasons for your answers?

- Do you feel one or more of these concepts should be explored further in other arena FPS games?

- Would you have preferred a Quake game based around one of these game mechanics - uberweapons, weapon limits, item knockback, etc. - as opposed to abilities and champions?
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 19:32 CDT, 9 May 2020 - 35772 Hits
New Cerberon (Beta 1) - newcerberon_b1 (20 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 19:50 CST, 1 March 2013 - iMsg
New Cerberon - by Ricardo "EmeraldTiger" Stevenson
Beta 1 (Updated 10/20/2013)

The initial news of the GTKRadiant 1.6 build announcing QL support was exciting to hear, so I decided to begin work on a new CTF map. Looking for some possible themes, I decided that I would go with a Strogg based aesthetic once I get to the visuals, after being awestruck by cityy's marvelous Strogg textures used in three of the Premium Pack 15 maps. The map is named after the Strogg capital city in the Quake 2 storyline.

The map supports classic CTF, as well as One Flag CTF, Harvester, Attack & Defend, Domination, and Race.

Download: (Beta 1)

- Bugs (check all supported gametypes)
- Item Placement
- Inconsistencies between bases (I copy and flip the bases and then make minor adjustments as needed if they're quick and easy enough, then I check both sides thoroughly. But it's still possible for something to slip up, so if you notice anything in one base that isn't reflected in the other, notify me.)
- Botplay

- Location markers
- Visuals

Thank you for your time, and have fun!
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 22:18 CDT, 20 October 2013 - 17462 Hits
Corrosion (17 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 19:20 CDT, 25 October 2012 - iMsg
The 2nd place winner of the Maverick Summer 2010 Mapping Competition, Corrosion received high critical acclaim upon it's initial Quake III release (LvL review here: Now that it's finally seen it's QL debut, how do you think it will work as a competitive TDM map?

The layout is highly fluid with plenty of choke points, and has enough room to navigate without feeling claustrophobic (I know some TDM maps in the past were criticized for being too tight), and is vertical enough to ensure interesting fights. The item placement seems fairly balanced as well, with a MH in one of the middle rooms and a Quad in back, with a RA on one side and two YA's on the other. It doesn't seem like any room has too much weight, the MH has a LG but the LG is easy to attack and I doubt anyone will be controlling MH with it alone, especially with the connectivity this arena provides. The two YA's are good for teams out of control of the map. RG is available, but it's in a low room and in a pool of murky water, so I doubt it would dominate the map and promote +backing / camping. There's no other PU's besides the Quad - quad is also prone to being attacked with ease due to it's low positioning.

So how do you think it would fare in competitive TDM?
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 19:33 CDT, 25 October 2012 - 4760 Hits
Natural Selection / Social Darwinism (11 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 09:00 CDT, 15 September 2012 - iMsg
This is an issue that has always concerned me and of which I have researched continuously. I speculate if I'm one of the only ones in the community that has a stance against the concept of applying natural selection to society. Now before we begin, please note that this is not a religious argument, despite the moral issues presented. I am quite nonreligious myself, although I do have complex scientific beliefs about God and the universe, and how they can be explained through ideas such as parallel universe theories, though that's best left for another discussion. Please leave well-thought out, logical responses, no "tl;dr" thank you very much.

People have always had these ideas, but it seems like I see it more and more these days. In fact, I've noted people who believe medicine, welfare, and the like are going against natural selection and hampering humanity, because we're allegedly supporting the weak and the poor who should've died off as a result of natural selection and in turn, "cleansed" the gene pool. Also generally included in the "weeding pool" are the mentally challenged or physically disabled.

I comprehend where these people are deriving their notions, but I abhor the emotionally neutral attitudes of people (though, this does not mean I abhor the people themselves - just their outlook) in favor of allowing natural selection to work in today's society. I've had depression on and off this year, and much of it can be attributed to the lachrymose outlook upon humanity. Even when people do stupid things and pay the price for it, I don't act scornful about it, or say "Darwin Award"! Now I acknowledge that texting while driving or urinating on electric fences aren't very bright things, but I'm not going around saying "He deserved to die." This is somewhat straying off the discussion however, as I'm more specifically focused on low-class individuals and those with genetic "disadvantages".

There's many reasons why I'm against allowing natural selection to take part in society as several desire. For starters, we're humans. We may biologically be a member of the Kingdom Animalia, but clearly we are more intelligent than the other animals, and know how to deal with the problems in society through reason and intellect, and at some point in the future people shouldn't have to despair over offering assistance to the people in need, when it becomes more and more convenient. We're not a hunting and gathering society anymore, hint hint. To partially quote Descartes, "Wise men are instructed by reason... ...the beasts, by nature." Natural selection is a component of nature. That doesn't mean I'm pointing fingers and calling proponents of social darwinism "beasts", - but the point Descartes makes is important to consider.

Emotional issues are also present, and I know people will say "To hell with emotion" - but remember, emotion is part of us as much as our mind, and governs our lives to equal degree. Now, let's imagine a family member of yours has a condition, say, a mental disability. (No offense intended to those who really do, for this is an example) If you are a person who believes natural selection should work freely in society, would not this person in your family be included? Do you have the heart to believe they should be eliminated? What if this person was, in fact, you? These are solemn questions every advocate of social darwinism should ask themselves.

The concept of Social Darwinism is also flawed in that it's highly flavored depending on the individual. A most infamous example is Hitler, who believed the white Germans were the superior race in humanity, and that everyone else was inferior, especially the Jews. Obviously, hardly anyone believes in his ideals today.

Also, there is enormous potential in humans that may not immediately display it, and one of the primary reasons why the idea applying natural selection in society is barbaric and replete with ignorance. Stephen Hawkings is bound to a wheelchair and must have a digitalized voice output speech; yet he is one of the brightest individuals on the face of the Earth that many undoubtedly look up to. There's also people who have done incredible things with yet even more incredible afflictions. As I mentioned earlier, we as humans evolved to reason and think beyond nature's grasp.

And simply put, people should have the right to lead enjoyable lives, without discrimination. I used to live across from a couple in a town-home apartment neighborhood; these people never attended college and rely purely upon the government for food, shelter, and the like. There was even one time where I had to help the man of the household to open an intricately secured container (what it was exactly escapes me). Yet, these people are extremely friendly and often begin some engaging conversations. They had a pleasant, happy aura around them. I suppose my case may be rare, but such cases do exist is the point.

IMO, slowing natural selection is a good thing, since it opens up potential for others to lead successful lives. Who am I to deny a man life when he may do great things one day? What is your position on this issue?

NOTE: Despite the issues presented above, I'm not against abortion, knowing that a woman should have the right to do what she wants with her own body.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 19:36 CDT, 10 March 2015 - 3635 Hits
Catharsis - paswdm1 (Beta 2) (16 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 14:34 CDT, 8 August 2012 - iMsg
In light of the 1.0 release of Warsow, I decided to construct a duel map in between work with UE3.

Download (Beta 2):


Any suggestions are, of course, welcome. Thanks for trying it out!
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 10:27 CST, 25 November 2012 - 14337 Hits
Harvester and 1FCTF (24 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 21:21 CDT, 30 April 2012 - iMsg
Imagining for a moment that these gametypes were free and available to the general public, how would you feel about these gametypes being in tournaments and having streams, etc.? I know most people will point out that "since they're from TA, they're not good at all and this is a stupid suggestion" but IMO that has more to do with the stigma attached to them, as they're very fun and have potential, while the other three new gametypes understandably might not pick up a competitive following since they're all CA-based. (Except for Domination perhaps, that's actually quite good despite the lack of items)

Harvester and 1FCTF promote teamwork just like regular CTF and TDM, they just have slight variations of the main objective. Harvester actually requires you to be able to score frags to earn points for your team, rather than the passive fragging in regular CTF as a means of defending or washing out defenders. It's also extremely fun to watch and would be excellent streaming material, due to the risk of carrying lots of skulls on your back and then watching that one guy ruin the other's day for them. You don't get any of that with normal CTF.

1FCTF isn't quite as exciting as Harvester, but it's not any less exciting than regular CTF either, and appears to be just as balanced. It also, obviously, puts more emphasis on mid-area control. Sometimes the white flag stand replaces a power-up, sometimes it does not. This would also be interesting to stream, even if just for the sake of variation.

They most likely won't see attention ofc, but I think that's just because they're under a lackluster subscription model that prevents them from seeing the activity they deserve. In fact, many players are flocking today to try these gametypes on both casual and competitive maps, so I'm sure it's just the payment restraints. But what do you think? Would you watch streams of them or download demos?
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 21:25 CDT, 30 April 2012 - 7099 Hits
Look at my crap! (72 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 09:37 CDT, 21 April 2012 - iMsg
Hoping to get a bit of promotion, advice, etc. on my artwork, so I decided to make a journal post to share my stuff. I'm self-taught, no art classes here and proud!

Any suggestions on how I can become better and improve my technique is highly appreciated.

DA Account:

Current works on my blog:

Hopefully I can put up my chibi Skyrim guy up soon. :3

12846 Hits
Good tools for trad. art to digital art? (4 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 09:16 CDT, 22 March 2012 - iMsg
Basically I'm looking for a combination of good (preferably free, although I can always torrent them esp. since they are in the $100 - $1000 range many times anyway) programs to help with doing digital art based off hand-drawn material, mainly with a manga / anime style. Which programs are capable of reproducing / creating linearts most efficiently and cleanly? (I guess that would be in the line of vector art) Which tools are best for painting and shading? I'm sure there's quite a few artistic people out here that could be of assistance.

Right now I'm stuck with GIMP which I know isn't the best option, and this is the (probably crappy method) I have to use:

- Adjust contrast of scanned drawing to make lines stand out more.

- Use paths tool to trace around lines and fill in white areas with desired color, etc.

- Use dodge / burn, etc. to add highlights, shadows, w/e although it is far from perfect and I'd love to know how to achieve a much smoother effect. Another problem with this is if I want to go back and make more changes, I have to manually re-select that area and the results may not be pretty if the selection goes over a line or into an unmodified area. Basically I'd like to be able to make changes to a particular area without accidentally screwing up another part of the image.

- Use paths to make outlines, although the way I draw irl the lines can be undesirably thick.

- Add effects like metallic luster, etc. though this mainly involves the issues I outlined in the previous step. Is there a good website that outlines how to deal with doing different materials, including metal, skin, leather, w/e?

Looking at other digital artists (primarily on DA) it seems they use different programs interchangeably and I'd like to get into some good habits before I end up having to struggle to break bad ones. In the end I realize it's all down to patience and skill, but equipping oneself with good tools seems like a start and could make the road a bit less rough. Thanks in advance.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 09:26 CDT, 22 March 2012 - 1411 Hits
Rocket Launcher in my Garden (45 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 23:35 CST, 6 February 2012 - iMsg
Could either be Q3 or QL related, but this forum gets more activity so figured this is the obvious place to post this.

Note that I didn't make this, somebody else did. All credit goes to Daxilic for creating such an awesome showpiece of modeling goodness. I just felt it was worth sharing, like a person would do with any cool vid, hehe.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 13:36 CST, 8 February 2012 - 16043 Hits
Have we lost freedom of speech on ESR? (165 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 15:16 CST, 24 January 2012 - iMsg
I didn't want to hijack the Gentle Rape video thread, so here is my thoughts in a topic:

In the GR Video thread I gave a response about the video, outlining what I did / didn't like about it, *just like anybody else would do*.

All I did was give an *opinion*... why is everyone attacking me for it? I have seen other people give their responses to movies, etc. and they were left alone. Why is everyone pointing fingers at me, lol? Doesn't this site support freedom of speech and the right to give our responses? I'm sorry if I did sound a bit harsh, but I wasn't just saying it was bad, I at least said *why* it was bad, etc. giving reasons to support my claims. I'm not one of those guys that just goes and says "lololol it sucks 0/10"

I'm not offended I just don't want to look like the "bad guy" just because I gave my personal comments, which everyone has the right to do so. Everyone else is allowed to make negative comments apparently but not me.
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 15:18 CST, 24 January 2012 - 19001 Hits
What do you think makes a good map? (81 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 22:07 CST, 31 December 2011 - iMsg
This thread was started in response to a comment by frs in the Seams and Bolts thread.

Well wviperw's competitive level design guide seems to have disappeared off the face of the internet, and has been gone for a while now. It mainly covered duel, since he mentioned to not put power-ups in duel maps, etc. which ofc is easy to do. But once on my Dynasty map, someone referenced wviperw's LD guide and suggested I remove the fog of death in my map because it would destroy it for competitive play. This confused me because the guide was made for duel, while my map was mainly TDM-focused. There's also plenty of good maps that have fog of death - take Grim Dungeons or Purgatory for example.

I've also been told in a TDM map, you need a lot of movement room / running space around a power-up so people can fight over it properly. Yet, I see that Grim Dungeons, played in tournaments, has a BS sitting on a tiny platform.

I'd like to gather opinions on what you think makes a good map overall. Right now I think:

- Vertical Element (but not too much)
- Good connectivity, so a room / battle can be approached in many different ways
- Powerful items separated from each other
- Not too many annoying obstacles

And can you save a map without ruining the purpose of it, such as a map that's supposed to be very open like Black Cathedral or a map that's supposed to be tight with 90-degree angles like Concrete Palace? Or do you think they have to be modified to such an extent that they're barely recognizable? For example, I've seen people suggesting to remove the BS on Reflux. C'mon... that's what the map revolves around! Basically put: Any layout or idea can work, you just gotta give it tweaks, right? And the last update made it so the Battle Suit isn't so powerful in CTF, so they did try to do something about it. I don't really think you should have to remove or add entire rooms / change several hallways to make a map good either, that makes it an entirely different map altogether.

So what do you think?
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 22:10 CST, 31 December 2011 - 12131 Hits
Seams and Bolts for dueling - Thoughts? (11 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 16:12 CST, 14 December 2011 - iMsg
Well, I mentioned in the Hektik thread about Seams and Bolts' potential as a duel map, and someone agreed with me.

So apparently as I mentioned, someone said the spawns made the map unbalanced (maybe there was a spawn right next to a YA? can't remember) and from the times I've played this the RG can be easy to pick people off with, but does help deny control of MH, YA, etc. so I'm not sure if it's such a good idea to remove it or not.

What would you do to make S&B suitable for dueling? Try not to change the layout, and if you must go there don't go trying to add or remove whole rooms or stuff - otherwise you'll make it a completely different map.

(Note once again that I'm not really a competitive player, but what the heck I like these discussions and I might learn something from them for mapping purposes :p)
3094 Hits
Developer Snippets (207 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 20:45 CDT, 2 November 2011 - iMsg
Well, some of you already saw the CPM thread. Here`s some other things he mentioned that may be of interest if you don`t read QL:


Sync on Proving Grounds:

"No one has been playing the layout with the chaingun. It was a fun experiment and as noted, I think the map really showed that CG was balanced against the LG. But regardless, very few were willing to adopt the chaingun into duel gameplay, therefore I will be implementing a non-chaingun layout that is much more closer to the original RL/LG/SG layout that existed in the original. I anticipate that it will remain to be an underplayed map, but the layout change might be nice for nostalgic gameplay."



European Flags:

"We're not entirely against the idea... we just haven't added a Euro flag yet because the European Union is not a nation and we currently only support/offer country flags. "

Link: ""


Map Fixes:

"Thanks for the feedback, I'll look into getting a lot of these fixes into our next update."



New Weapons:

"I don't anticipate any new weapons being added. Maybe someday we'll add the cement launcher to fulfill that QL myth. Never know what the future will hold though, so feel free to keep making suggestions. "



Shishkebab (Double Rail) Award:

"I agree it would be a nice award or in-game medal, if nothing else because sometimes you can miss that you pulled it off and the medal would be a nice and rewarding notification."



New Server Locations:

"We currently are not expanding our server pool into additional regions, but if we ever get to expand again placing servers in Italy and Brazil would be our top two priorities.

There is a very large player base currently in Italy and I understand that their Internet lines do not provide the best connections outside of their country. To note, we did not remove the Italian server, the ISP that was offering the server shut it down.

Brazil, while currently a smaller player base, provides a great location for Brazil and many nearby countries in South America, filling a gap in our current coverage."



Clan Searching:

"It is on our todo list, we'll look into getting it implemented soon."



He also made a Movie Making subforum but you probably already knew that.

Now let`s all calm down guys!
46337 Hits
Why some think Q4 > Q2? (96 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 17:18 CDT, 9 October 2011 - iMsg
Note that I`ll allow everyone to be entitled to their opinion in this thread. I was just curious and searching for explanations, as to why some think Quake 4 is a better game than Quake 2.

I notice when some people are asked to list their favored Quakes in order, they put Q2 after Q4, yet they never explain why. To me Q4 felt very slow compared to Q2, even with a higher FOV, I always felt more "in action" in Q2. It also lacked several gameplay elements prominent in the previous Quakes, which took modifications to get implemented. They took liquids like water, lava, etc. out for who knows what reason. It`s just not what Quake should be imo. (And BTW, I understand mods like Q34A add such elements back into the game - but it should`t have been removed in the first place)

Maybe I am missing something that`s not very obvious?

(Posting this in Q4, as it has more activity)
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 17:29 CDT, 9 October 2011 - 19505 Hits
Dynasty (12 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 00:14 CDT, 16 September 2011 - iMsg

I`d like to present my custom arena, Dynasty. I`d like to think it`s good for FFA, 4v4 TDM, 8v8 CA, and Freeze Tag.

I`m not strictly aiming for this to be "competitive", even though it would be cool. Rather I`d like to ensure that it`s fun to play and enjoyable. It`s meant to be fairly open, and I think it works in both vq3 and CPM.

Instructions for installation located in the readme.


I hope you enjoy!
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 01:40 CST, 25 November 2011 - 3530 Hits
Can`t join #uscpmpickup (4 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 21:45 CDT, 15 August 2011 - iMsg
I`ve literally tried everything I could. I tried using a "clean" install with the latest versions of Q3 and CPM, with no extra .pk3`s in the CPM folder other than the official maps. But I can`t connect to the #uscpmpickup, or many other servers. There are a few servers that work properly, but most do not. I use a "pure" model with no custom skins. I have connected from QTracker, the in-game server browser, and from pasting the IP, but all prove fruitless.

I have absolutely no idea why this happens, and I`d greatly appreciate it if someone could help me in getting this fixed, as it`s one of the few active places where custom maps are frequently enjoyed. I also wanted to test my comp map a bit as well.

Here is a condump:
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 21:49 CDT, 15 August 2011 - 2177 Hits
Breaking News! (15 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 19:43 CDT, 21 June 2011 - iMsg
why can`t I delete my threads
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 23:19 CDT, 21 June 2011 - 2891 Hits
Sorrow (17 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 16:36 CDT, 31 May 2011 - iMsg
PP8 brought us a new duel map known as "Sorrow". First of all I`d have to say that the aesthetics are awesome, there`s not many QL arenas that have such a believable atmosphere and theme. But more importantly, it looks like a pretty good duel map. Unlike Concrete Palace, which was a bit of a corridor-fest, this seems to be more suitable for QL`s roomy play style. The layout and item placement are vaguely remiscent of Furious Heights. It`s about the same size too.

Tourney-worthy or not? Explain your opinions.
7388 Hits
Phrantic and Solid? (37 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 18:11 CDT, 25 April 2011 - iMsg
Why aren`t these maps in tourneys or even considered for tourneys? They aren`t super huge and therefore are quite fast. Sure they previously had some item setups that were controversial but they have since got rid of those, so why does everyone still hate these maps?

The railgun has been removed from Phrantic, what else do you want? It was real popular in Q4, and apart from neccessary changes to adjust to physics it plays well, so why not?

Solid used to have a chaingun but they removed it. Sure it`s mainly 2v2 TDM but why can`t it be a duel map either?

5395 Hits
Training Day (Duel) (11 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 15:45 CST, 9 March 2011 - iMsg
This was already posted over at q3w, but I thought I`d post it here as well. Please note that I`m not trying to take bst`s maps out of the limelight, in fact I have to say his maps look fantastic, and I want to congradulate him for his progress, so I`m going to give him some free advertising: check them out!. I`m just posting this because his posts reminded me to do the same. ;)

I was in contact with the devs about this, so I`m not planning on making any large-scale changes anymore. There`s a few minor visual issues such as z-fighting on a blue curve and a 25+ health bubble out of place near the NG, which were missed during testing. We`ll just see what they have to say about it. I am open to opinions, however.

I want to thank everyone at the Quake3World community for all the comments they gave about this map, especially Ferdinand "cityy" List, who is responsible for providing some of the architecture and the QL compiling settings. I hope everyone enjoys playing this map, even if only against bots.

The goal of this map wasn`t to make the prettiest map ever (swelt is my personal hero in this department), but something that would be playable on a *hopefully* competitive level. It`s designed for duel, but it`s application can extend to 2v2 TDM as well as other non-CTF gametypes. To make it seem more official, loading screens have been added as well as a callvote screen, using the official Quake Live screenshot format. The map was compiled using the official QL compile settings, given by cityy, as mentioned earlier.

Download: (1.13 MB)

Don`t forget to set it to read-only when putting it in your baseq3 folder, otherwise Quake Live will go on a mad rampage and eat this map for dinner as if it were steak. You have been warned!

I`ll post screenshots later on.

Enjoy people, and don`t forget to check out bst`s maps as well! :D
Edited by EmeraldTiger at 23:05 CST, 10 March 2011 - 3630 Hits
Domination Gametype coming to Quake Live (41 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 00:18 CST, 15 February 2011 - iMsg
(Note: this is not a leak or troll post, this is real information gathered in-game from the QL console, without the use of hacks)

I`ve confirmed the existence of three console cvars: g_domination, g_domscorerate, and g_domcaptime. These cvars are, as of now, non-functional, but this was the same way with Freeze Tag (g_freeze) and Clan Arena. (g_ca) We can probably expect to see this new Domination gametype within a year or so. I`m not sure if they are modifying existing maps for this gametype or if they are creating brand new ones, but I`m hoping it`s the latter. Probably will be accessible through console via g_gametype 10.

In case you don`t know what Domination is, it`s a team-based gametype with it`s origins dating back to Unreal Tournament. The objective is for your team to locate the control points around the map, hold them for a certain amount of time to gain points. Person to reach the point limit / get the most points within the time limit wins. You can also achieve points by fragging people guarding other control points.

Sponge claims that such a gametype is not forthcoming (from talking to him in-game) but that is just how the devs are - they don`t like to spoil things whether or not evidence is available and accessible. I can almost guarantee you it is coming, and when it does, it might bring back a large portion of the QL community and perhaps bring in more subscribers.

This post was already made on QL but I thought I`d post it over at ESReality as well.
9293 Hits
Concrete Palace - New Kid on the Block? (25 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 21:31 CST, 2 February 2011 - iMsg
Some of you have probably heard of the new content update by now. It gave us Skyward, which is basically a renamed (which was actually good, imo - old name was lame), slightly re-textured wcp23, but still remains true to the original and was probably one of the more requested ThreeWave maps.

Another one of the maps included was Dies Irae, which seems like a fantastic TDM map, having a bit of everything in it. That could be a competitive TDM map, but of course that gametype, afaik, doesn`t have an official mappool, which leaves us with Concrete Palace. Although I am by no means a professional / competitive player, I`m interested in hearing your opinions on this.

It`s smaller than Devilish, so it plays better as an actual duel map as opposed to a 2v2 TDM. My only complaint would be that it`s a bit cramped, but other than that it seems like it could be the next big duel map. Is there a flaw that I am overseeing that could prevent this from entering tournaments? If there is, it`s definitely not obvious, or at least not to me.
6533 Hits
Appreciation (99 comments)
Posted by EmeraldTiger @ 20:19 CST, 11 January 2011 - iMsg
Hello, I am a person coming over from the Quake Live community, and am also a map designer for Quake III, who is a part of the community and the Quake3World community. I would like to share my opinions on the maps id is offering us and why we should come to appreciate these maps and enjoy them, rather than complaining about what we don`t have.

There`s an old saying that I promote with great frequency - "Try it, you might like it." That may sound quite trite, but it is a true phrase, yet it is one that probably 90% of people here refuse to acknowledge.

Many of you probably are wanting id to add some popular maps that the community has been demanding for a long time now. q3wcp9, q3wcp14, cpmctf2, cpm1a... the list goes on. Now, I, as much as anyone else here, would like to see these maps added. However, I also realize that I can`t control what id is going to do with Quake Live`s future. No amount of complaining is going to get the job done.

From the QL forums, I have laid eyes upon some posts where people said that "all id is giving us right now is useless maps that nobody wants". I beg to differ. While everyone does have their own opinions and tastes, you can`t just say "nobody" wants them. There are people, and quite a large amount, that are enjoying the maps id has given to us, including myself. Also, "useless" should not apply to any of the maps in QL. An example of a useless map is test_bigbox. Although some arenas in QL are questionably simple, such as Thunderstruck, they still have value because they have weapons and items to help to make the map playable. Of course, you could always play Clan Arena, but not everybody does.

Take a look back at some of the maps id has given us within the past few updates. Do you really consider all of them to be "useless, maps that nobody wants?" You need to consider that all of the maps in QL were built by some of the best level designers in the world. They have a working knowledge of what makes and breaks a map. They have their maps examined for potential gameplay and technical problems, they are heavily polished, and the maps only make the final cut once all the work is finished. Even though everyone has their preferences, you also must consider the time and effort put into these maps, and realize that they have all the qualities of what most people would see as a good map.

Take Devilish, for example. This map has gotten "okay" to "awful" reception in it`s QL debut, yet ironically it was also the 1st place winner of the NoGhost Mapping Competition back in Q3. That`s a lot of variance in opinion right there. However, take a closer look. Many people say that the map is "large" for a duel map. It is, in a way, but you`d be surprised at how fast it plays. In both practice duels and online ones, I found this to be a very enjoyable map. It may not be to everyone`s taste, but it still has all the qualities of what made Blood Run so legendary - connectivity, item balance and control, etc. At least give thanks to Justin "StormShadow" Ingels for giving you this map.

This also comes to show how harsh the QL community generally is, especially towards new or unfamiliar maps. Back at Q3W or, a map can get good to excellent reception there. However, when / if it arrives in QL, people look upon it from a different perspective. And before anyone says "Those people don`t know what good maps are," let me assure you that they do. They criticize maps. They tell what`s bad in addition to the good. They even comment on texture misalignments. What makes them different is that they can look at a map from the "inside", so to speak, and know the true quality of the map as a whole, rather than by preference.

To summarize, it`s not id`s fault that you don`t like the maps. That`s your preference, not the actual quality of the maps. How is id software supposed to know that a map like "Gothic Rage" or "Double Impact" is "useless" or "crap", if it has the qualities that all your favored maps (q3wcp9, ztntourney1) have?

Once again, I realize everyone has their opinions and preferences. But also remember that it`s quality that matters, not preference. And back at Q3W /, that`s how we see things, and that`s how I`d like to see QL view things as well.

Because we are not ran by bias.

We are ran by perspective.
Edited by xou at 20:32 CST, 11 January 2011 - 26471 Hits
Next Page >>
Conceived and created by Sujoy Roy (Legal Notices)
RSS Feed Information, Link Buttons and Banners, Report a Bug