New shiny Logo

I designed a little logo for Map2Curve in Photoshop today. Thanks once more to voidkeeper for his feedback during the process.

In case someone is interested in this, some of these are earlier versions that got discarded during the development process.

Map2Curve v0.5 released

Hey there Goldsrcdiggers,

I’ve released the new version of my map generator Map2Curve.
The download mirrors have been updated accordingly.

Download Locations

See the version’s overview page for more detailed information about the new additions and changes.

In this release I added a bunch of important features that I wanted to have in there for a long time now. Let’s take a look at the main changes.

WAD3 Support


Finally I added the ability to read WAD3 files (Goldsource WAD files), so one of the most cumbersome downsides of the tool is a thing of the past now.
Only thing you need to do is to add the files paths to WADList.txt in the WAD folder or place copies of them in the said folder.

FGD File and Setting Entities

3 new Setting Entities for Goldsource Editors

As a first alternative to using preset files for curve generation I now added 3 entities for Goldsource editors that enable you to modify all of the currently available commands for M2C.

Detail Object Processing

Generated Map with Detail Groups in it

It is now possible to take anything from the level and align it along a curve object. I also added several possibilities to modify the settings for each of such a detail group individually. First and most relevant one being the info_detailgroup entity from the new FGD.
Take a look at the new versions overview page for more information and walkthroughs.

GUI tool still cooking


voidkeeper is currently working on a GUI tool for M2C. It generates the necessary preset files for curve generation based on the users choices and sends it to the M2C executable afterwards.
This would be the second alternative to creating preset files and probably one of the most attractive, too.

At this point I want to shout a loud THANK YOU at voidkeeper and wish him all the best for his current project Occult Scrim:

v0.5 Changelog

  1. Added WAD3 File Support
  2. Added Detail Object and Point Entity Processing
  3. Added FGD File and Setting Entities for GoldSource Editors
  4. Added nulltex and spike_height commands
  5. Various bug fixes and adjustments

Map2Curve Update 0.5 Progression #4

Getting close to release: I more or less finished some remaining issues with the new feature (detail objects).

As you can see it is not a big problem to generate complex curved objects with a lot of details, while still being able to preserve some polygons. The last part is of course spoken relatively, since scenes like these will always consume more polygons than simpler ones and thus have to be used carefully.

The curved corner part of this bridge was generated from this simple map scene:

Entities like cyclers, NPCs and thelike are being rotated and aligned along the curve as well. This behaviour can be deactivated, too.
The desert scene in the gallery was compiled with UnkleMike’s modification of the VHL Compilers, which enables models to cast shadows.

Map2Curve Update 0.5 Progression #3

Proper Angle Rotation for Point-Entities

After weeks of annoying guesswork I was finally able to implement proper rotations for point entities. Now if you ask yourself “Isn’t it just like rotating a vertex in 3D?”. Well, not exactely. Let’s just say I now know a lot more about Euler angles and rotation matrices than before and I am “absolutely” sure that will be of help in my future life. Yaha.

Anyway, when including detail groups into a source map (loose objects that are not meant to be a part of the curve itself), their member entities can be automatically rotated both along the Pitch and Yaw axis, which means the objects will follow the curve entirely in direction and orientation. This can be helpful to generate specific scenes I can imagine.

Realistic scenes like the one I added.
You know. Realistic stuff like that.

I think I will be able to release version 0.5 in the next couple of weeks.

See you soon guys.

Map2Curve Update 0.5 Progression #2

Hey guys!
I am still working on the new feature, which will enable you to generate additional detail objects along curve objects.
I had a hard time figuring out a specific calculation method, that actually wasn’t even necessary in the end, so there went one or two weeks of depressing work.

Detail Groups

Pitch for Ramps
As you can see on the GIF I am including a pitch for ramps, which will make sense in some situations, where you want the detail object to actually follow the ramp completely. It won’t produce perfect alignments for every setup though.

Origin Point
Also at the moment the Origin of a detail object is its bounding box center point. Later I might include a way to use actual Origin brushes.

Creating Detail Objects
Detail objects are being created in the same MAP-file as the curve source objects. In order for Map2Curve to know which brush belongs to a detail object group, it has to be given a new Key and Value.
Currently it is done like this:

Key: m2c_dgroup
Value: CustomGroupName

A detail object, or rather a detail object group, can consist of multiple different entities. Each one needs the same group name ofc.

What about Point Entities?
I am on it.

Entity angles and numeration
I am aiming at automatically generating rotations for point and solid entities, that use the “angles”-key (NPCs, weapons, light_spot, func_door_rotating, etc.).
Also I want add a function to number entities consecutively (button01,button02,…). For this the tool will look for keys like “target” and “targetname”. This makes generation of functional setups – that depend on individual targetnames – a lot easier.

My participation at Ragemap 2019

Futile, is the word that could describe my effort participating in the ragemap 2019 event initiated by Sven Coop Forum’s mod Hezus.

The time target for the main part of that map was 3 hours. I ended up working on it a few hours on saturday and the entire sunday (the day of the deadline).

What did I do wrong?

While I know my way around Hammer and graphics, I barely know how to create multiplayer maps. I especially lack knowledge of Sven Coops gameplay and entities, which wasn’t really a problem so much, because neither did I own SC, nor were I motivated to download it for the mapping event.

So I just sticked with the standard Half-Life entities and put together a simple scene, where the team needs to split up and the main group has to protect the lone wolf, while he again controls a crane, enabling the team to escape. Finally the lone wolf can longjump down from the crane and catch up with the main group, in theory.

How well does this work in multiplayer? I don’t know. I should have started to work on this a week ago, then – maybe – I could have had the chance to test it along with some friends.

How did I create the map?

On the first day I created the crane textures and already mapped half of the the crane itself in Hammer. The crane textures were done in Photoshop CS3. I used reference images from google, mostly of Liebherr building lot cranes.

I took the rest of the textures from my existing project files of Nohra’s Concealment (maybe you already figured that out).

I used Map2Curve for the curved bridge and almost completely for the terrain. Here and there I had to fix something by hand of course, but the tool really saved a lot of time.

Mostly I was working in Hammer. I switched to JACK for creating the paths, which Map2Curve need to generate terrain.

Conclusion

Starting 2 days before a deadline might be a great way for keeping up the motivation, however it should be left to the experts.
Knowing the requirements of multiplayer maps also comes in handy, logically.

Map2Curve Update 0.5 Progression

Hey people,
a little preview on the next feature for version 0.5 of Map2Curve:
Detail objects.

Detail objects can be anything that is not meant to be turned into a curve, but is still supposed to be aligned along a curve object.
This will include point entities, too, as well as entire solid brush objects, for example lights, cross beams, ropes, etc. Anything you might want to “decorate” your curve object with.

Of course there will be certain limitations again, but this is at least meant to be a huge relief for certain mapping tasks. Primarily it eliminates the need for manually doing it by using “Paste Special” in an Editor.

Map2Curve v0.4 released

Hey ppl, this update was cooking for quite a long time now.

I’ve added many little things I wanted to have in there before I continue to work on the remaining big features: Precise path extrusion, completely seamless textures and detail support).

Since the additions are so versatile and working on the documentation gives me a headache, I will try to cover all of them on an additional page.
So, for a detailed overview of this version, go here.

Download

Features

Transformations
Rot, Move and Scale for source and final objects.

Group based texture shifts
Entity groups are now being respected for horizontal texture shift calculation.

Transitions
A way to control the properties of first and last curve brushes, to be able to combine different curves more easily.

Complex Triangulation
Any brush can be triangulated now. No restrictions anymore.

Export Range
How many sections of the curve object are to be exported. Has an important impact on smooth ramp generation.

Bounding Boxes
Clean bounding boxes for easier handling curves in an editor.

Skip NULL Brushes
Wenn using complex triangulation, occuring NULL brushes can be skipped during export.

Version 0.4 Changelog

  1. Added custom file paths for input and output files.
  2. Added command “append” (0/1) to add newly generated objects to existing files.
  3. Added simple transformations, for final and source object.
  4. Added bounding boxes (0/1; active per default).
  5. Added commands “range_start” and “range_end” (0-100) that control how much of the generated curve object will be exported finally.
  6. Added “transit_tri” and “transit_round” (0/1) to enable control over the first and last brush of a curve and their respective cut-faces.
  7. Added commands “gaps” (0/1) and “gaplen”, to create intermediate sections and control their length.
  8. Overhaul of brush triangulation. Added complex triangulation.
  9. Added “skipnull” (0/1) command to ignore NULL brushes on file export.
  10. Added the shift mode “per group texture” (shift 5) that respects the whole solid entity when calculating horizontal texture shifts.

Map2Curve v0.3 released

Hey there people.

It is done. I have updated the download mirrors according to the new version of Map2Curve:

I have accomplished all of what I was aiming for in this release, including the first version of the path extrusion feature and a complete overhaul of the texture alignment on ramps, which, as I posted recently, now works like the UV Lock feature in JACK.

Next thing I will do is probably creating a few video tutorials and updating the documentation.

As for the rest…

Changelog:

  • New Feature: Added path extrusion
  • New Feature: Added World-to-Face alignment conversion on map load
  • Overhaul: Complete overhaul of the texture alignment for ramps
  • New settings: p_reverse, p_cornerfix, p_split, ramptex
  • Added triangulation for 5 sided brushes
  • Triangulation now default for ramp generation
  • Fixed minor texture misalignment issues

Future planned features:

  • Handling of fixed level components like smaller detail objects (lamps, guard rails) or even whole level parts. At the moment you would achieve those by using special paste in an editor like JACK
  • “Real” path extrusion that works by intersecting lines, like you would usually have it in 3D software.