We just wrapped up another challenge at MapCore: the Cube Challenge. The goal of this challenge was to build a level completely contained within a 1024x1024x1024 cube (based on id Tech scales and adjusted proportionally for other engines). We ran a similar contest back in 2007, but I never finished my entry and was itching to release something this time.
One thing that bugs me about these dimensions, though, is that horizontal and vertical spaces aren’t created equal. Unless you fall back on ladders, elevators, or teleporters, covering a 128 unit vertical shift requires somewhere in the realm of 256 units – 25% of the horizontal bounds allowed in this challenge! As a result, many levels tend to fill every possible inch of X/Y space, but often can’t utilize the full 1024 units on the Z axis.
I decided I wanted to take a crack at this in Prey. I’ve long held that Prey is the best of the Doom III engine games; it remains one of my favorites this generation, and I’ve always wanted to experiment with some of the crazy level design possibilities opened up by variable gravity and seamless portals. The result is “Bender,” which is now available for download.
With tomorrow’s deadline for the MapCore 20 Brush Challenge, I’ve wrapped up my entry, a Quake III Deathmatch level called “Don’t Mess With Hexas.”
Giving it the proper kfs3dm1 nomenclature might be overkill for a cheap gimmick map, but as this is my first-ever release of a Quake III level and the first personal work I’ve put online since 2004, I say what the hell, why not?
Textures were created by Matthew “Lunaran” Breit. The skybox is “Stormy Days” by Jochum “Hipshot” Skoglund. Lighting was handled by Matt’s fancy Python script that generates environment lighting based on color values within the sky textures. Fancy. I also stole the name from Matt; after declaring I was considering naming the level “Hexas,” he took it to its logical conclusion of “Don’t Mess With Hexas.” It beats the working title of “Insert Hex Pun Here”
You can download the level here: kfs3dm1.pk3. I’ve also included the source .map file for your viewing pleasure.
Additional shots follow:
We’re running a fun challenge over on MapCore to build a BSP level out of 20 or fewer brushes. I’ve been dabbling off and on for the duration of the challenge, but decided on a whim tonight to scrap my previous layout drafts in favor of this one. Which is definitely The One™. Here’s a quick shot from Radiant:
I’m using some more custom concrete textures from Matt Breit, this time on hexagons instead of cubes. Monolithic floating concrete is more similar in style to lun3dm5 than I originally intended, but I’m still pleased with the result. I’m currently using the old green/orange lun3dm5 sky, but will be swapping it out with a different sky and new lighting before making my final submission on Sunday. I’ll have screens and a more detailed writeup then.