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  • Mapping Advice

    Why I'm making this post and why you should care:

    I'm making this post because we need more maps on the server and most people don't know how to do certain things (like finding a specific texture or how to structure the map.)

    You should care about building quality maps if you care about the server. The server exists for fun only. In order to maintain the fun we need more maps and they must be of good quality.

    Building quality maps for the server makes you a really valuable player to the community as you are giving everyone what they needs most; fun!

    People who make maps are contributing massively to the server so you should be doing it if you want to see GamerX get better and better.

    Also, mapping is just really fun. It's hard as fuck but once you complete a map it feels really good and even though you hated how hard it was you will want to start another map because it feels good to see the completed project.

    How to find any texture:

    1. You need to know the object ID that uses the texture you want. You can search for it here. Searching for objects are way easier than searching for textures.

    Example: I want the texture for the crowds in the stadium. I searched for ''crowd'' and got the object ID (ID:13650.)

    Once you find the object on the site you can easily find the texture by clicking on the Object then clicking on the Details button in the Object Description.

    Scroll down to the section named ''Files'' and to the right you will see the TXD, IDE and DFF. You will see that the name of the texture file (make note of this) is blue meaning you can click on it and it will take you to another page where you will find the texture you need.

    Now you can put that texture in game by writing [object ID] [texture file name] [the name of the texture you were looking for]

    In this case I would write this in the spoma command: 13650 kickarse crowd

    Now you can open notepad and write it out and copy and paste it in game so you don't have to keep opening and minimising SAMP to write it all out. I will explain later why this is a good idea.

    Making something invisible.

    Add this to your spoma: 19279 matlights invisible

    Example: /spoma 1 0 19279 matlights invisible

    TIPs on creating good maps:

    1.
    Decide the theme.

    What kind of theme do you want the map to be? This is important because you don't want to put just any object in the map. Those maps can be good sometimes but most of the time they are just pure trash. Putting random objects to hide behind and then surrounding it with a boarder is not good. It says you didn't put much effort into it.

    It's best to pick a theme or an idea and then make sure all the objects you use fit that theme.

    Example: I want to build a Wild West Hunger Games map. I will obviously not put sky scrappers on this map or anything that you wouldn't find in a wild west setting. I would not put Chinese style buildings on this map. So make sure you only use objects that fit the theme.

    2. Decide what size the map should be.

    You don't want to make a map that is too big or too small for it's event type. The bigger the map is the harder it will be to find players if they aren't on the radar. The smaller the map is the quicker the event will end. Take these things into consideration when building your map.

    3. Make decent boundaries if possible.

    When making boundaries don't just put a big object around it, even if it's invisible. It doesn't look professional. Also, newbies at event usually like to find were the boundaries are by running away as much as possible, if the boundary is invisible they will run around all the edges trying to find a way out, which ruins the event. Only make boundaries invisible if you absolutely need to.

    Example: in GooInc I put some invisible boundaries using /runway but only because there is hills as boundaries and you can run up the hills and get out, so in this case invisible boundaries are good. Also, in ShaolinTemple I wanted players to see the water but not be able to jump into it, so once again invisible boundaries are good here.

    Some ideas for boundaries are: Hills and rocks, buildings, destruction and just water. I don't recommend using the servers boundaries as they throw you around and that can be annoying.

    4. Make a good layout.

    By layout I mean determine what parts of the map players can actually run on.

    CTF: most CTF maps let you just run anywhere and this means you have to chase players to get kills and all that room makes it easy to get flags to your base. This is only a good idea if the map is small because of course they can't run around that much. Like in GRC you can run anywhere you want but there isn't that much area for you to run on so players don't need to chase that much for kills.

    TIP: In CTFs it's best to make the map so there are a few narrow areas for you to run down to get to the flag. In these narrow areas players can be slaughtered for score easily.

    Like in ShipCTF there are only 2 ways you can go; through the gaps in the containers or on top of the containers. This makes it easy for you to get kills, you just have to chose to go on top of the containers or through the gaps and BOOM you find people to kill.

    This is how game devs think when building maps. Like in CSGO you get A or B. These two ways to go are narrow and it forces players to come in contact with each other so they can fight.

    Hunger Games: in hunger games you don't really need to worry about layout much. But you DO have to take a few things into consideration:

    Sniper spots: create some places high up where people can snipe, but don't give them a view of the entire map because then anyone with a decent amount of sniper ammo can just take everyone out easy.

    Camping spots: cry if you want but camping is necessary (only if you do it for a little while) for like when you need to regain stamina, take food and to regenerate health, also if you need to report a cheater there or to talk in chat or quickly do something IRL. Camping spots are just spots to hide from being shot at. Bushes, inside buildings, inside containers, tunnels or just behind some objects.

    High spots: this is easy since pretty much every object gives you the high ground. Why is the high ground important? Well if your opponent is a good cbugger he can't use cbug on you (rapid cbug that is) if you are higher than him and it makes it harder for him to aim. Also when you have the high ground you can see the opponent more than he can see you. This is a nice advantage to have in your maps so that people who aren't so good at DM can get a chance to win. This will balance the power a little.

    Siege, LMS, LSS and TDM: Make it medium size compared to Construction LSS. A small map for these event types is perfectly fine as we need to force players to come into contact with each other so they can fight and not take too long.

    In LSS maps it should be built so that you need to be strategic and take things into consideration.

    Example: in Construction LSS you can't just run around looking for people as you'll get sniped. You need to move around but stay out of sight of snipers. You could chose a weather like sandstorm or fog to make it harder to see people thus making it require more strategy.

    In STP I recommend making a map were you would have to steal something. Like a bank and the project is the money you are stealing (this map exists already.) Or a army base and you are robbing secret information. Make your map justify why you are stealing the project.

    In TDM make both sides of the map balanced. Don't give 1 side a sniper spot and the other side without one. Don't put lots of explosive barrels on one side and not the other. Try to make it symmetrical but not literally, use different objects that give the same advantages.

    DM:

    Of course make these small areas but create a decent map, not just some small box everyone is placed in. A cool small map is the Oil Rig or the Sewers.

    Derby:

    Once again, try not to make these boring, like a big noob spot for players to ram each other. Try to make a nice setting that requires a lot of effort in order to win.

    My favourite example is izayoi's Forrest Derby. You get to ram players but you must keep your BMX on the logs also. This creates tension which makes it more exciting.

    5. Start with terrain.

    When you start by making a nice terrain you basically just have to ''fill in the blank''. This of course makes it a lot easier.

    6. Watch FPS.

    Use fraps or anything that shows your FPS. You want to make sure you don't use too much vegetation and particles as these effect FPS a lot. You can use these but use the FPS counter to know when you are using too much in the same place. I test my maps on my PC (100fps) and Laptop (15fps) so I know if I'm doing too much with vegetation and particles.

    If you just have 1 PC/Laptop and you get good fps 70+fps then assume that the average player will get around 20/30fps less than you. Not accurate of course but it's a rough idea.

    7. Find a good weather that fits the theme.

    Weather 17 and 18 is good for a desert theme, 16 for a theme with lots of destruction, 9 for a scary kind of theme and 7 if you want it to look normal but not all sunny and happy.

    8. Pick a good spawn point.

    If it's a Hunger Games don't make a spawn point where players all have to run in the same direction. In Hunger Games it's best to pick a spawn point that is close to the centre of the map.

    In CTF/TDM/Siege make sure the spawn points are sheltered so that spawn killing isn't easy.

    In LSS make sure spawn points are out of sight of other ones. You don't want people to die straight away.

    Once again make sure your spawn points balance the power. Don't give 1 spawn point a massive advantage over the others.

    10. Try to use multiple objects to make a new object.

    Example: izayoi used /log to make a Torii Gate.



    Roddja uses small square objects to make slabs for paths.

    I personally don't do this enough but I am doing it currently on my new map I'm working on.

    11. The last thing I recommend doing is creating a .txt file with notepad to keep a list of all the textures you will use on the map. You can name the .txt after your Map name.

    Example: GooInc.txt

    Well there's a few good tips on mapping. I hope to see more people making quality maps as the server needs them.

    Declan.
    Last edited by DeclanIsKing; 01-05-18, 07:54 AM. Reason: Fixed few mistakes

  • #2
    I hope people who just create a square area bordered with /fence for event map get a lesson from this tutorial....


    Quite a few advice correction from me

    Originally posted by DeclanIsKing View Post
    Making something invisible.

    Add this to your spoma: 19279 matlights invisible

    Example: /spoma 1 0 19279 matlights invisible
    This is not good way to make material invisible, refer to this tutorial: http://forum.gamerxserver.com/forum/...tutorial-spoma

    To make material invisible, just use this:
    Invisible /spoma <player-object number> 0 0 none none
    Why? It would not load another object in memory, it simply discard the material texture information from the current object. It's better and less lag.

    Originally posted by DeclanIsKing View Post
    Some ideas for boundaries are: Hills and rocks, buildings, destruction and just water. I don't recommend using the servers boundaries as they throw you around and that can be annoying.
    The approach using hills or realistic object to border/wall the area is indeed good, but it does not mean you have to avoid using server boundaries. They are also needed in case people glitched out of map, remember that object is streamed when only player is near the object. You will still need a server world boundaries as a second protection outer the border objects. This is the same with Z-limit, you also can't really only depend on ground objects when it's may still possible for them to go below it due to bug or lag.

    Originally posted by DeclanIsKing View Post
    In Siege I recommend making a map were you would have to steal something. Like a bank and the project is the money you are stealing (this map exists already.) Or a army base and you are robbing secret information. Make your map justify why you are stealing the project.
    That is a Steal The Project map, in siege the attacker has to stand in checkpoint for 30 minutes. You need to ensure the attacker can't be easily killed on the attacking spot. It's not just because you take away the briefcase.
    The siege map can be also loaded as steal the project map, if you want to support for both event type, you create it like the Bank map where it is placed in a storage room, some tables to cover but also only one door to enter and exit while the exit area is surrounded or near to the defender spawn. This benefit both attacker and defender, they all just need the right timing and strategy to outcome the opponent numbers.

    Originally posted by DeclanIsKing View Post
    In TDM make both sides of the map balanced. Don't give 1 side a sniper spot and the other side without one. Don't put lots of explosive barrels on one side and not the other. Try to make it symmetrical but not literally, use different objects that give the same advantages.

    DM:

    Of course make these small areas but create a decent map, not just some small box everyone is placed in. A cool small map is the Oil Rig or the Sewers.
    Please take a note that TDM and DM map is same, but only different modes. To support both types, you don't really have to make the map fully symmetric. You only need to make the spawn area segmented, let's say that you have 10 spawn zone in DM, and for TDM theres only 2, so you leave the other 8 spawn zones as an empty space that separate between two TDM spawn. Or if your map is separated by 2 islands, focus TDM spawn in only one island.

    And also map with explosive barrels is not good for any kind of event map. This is because they don't sync well with other player. You may have it normally (that's mean not too many) in one time play event like LMS or Derby, not on event types where you respawn after you died.


    Originally posted by DeclanIsKing View Post
    Derby:

    Once again, try not to make these boring, like a big noob spot for players to ram each other. Try to make a nice setting that requires a lot of effort in order to win.
    A big "noob" spot map actually fits well to bloodring event, so you don't have to worry if your map ended like that.

    6. Watch FPS.

    Use fraps or anything that shows your FPS. You want to make sure you don't use too much vegetation and particles as these effect FPS a lot. You can use these but use the FPS counter to know when you are using too much in the same place. I test my maps on my PC (100fps) and Laptop (15fps) so I know if I'm doing too much with vegetation and particles.

    If you just have 1 PC/Laptop and you get good fps 70+fps then assume that the average player will get around 20/30fps less than you. Not accurate of course but it's a rough idea.
    When we talk about laggy map, there are few things to consider:
    1. object count and density
    If you put too many objects in one place close to each other, you'll expect the player getting lags from it. Theres a tp+ command to check for streamed object density, otherwise you need to know the count of objects in one area.
    2. object size
    When the object physical size is too large, or even the texture quality is too high, you'll also get fps drops. Avoid using vegetation, particles objects (like mentioned), semi-transparent objects, animated objects, special objects. You can have it to beautify your map, but not too many. Or if you really need it, you have to decrease amount of other objects around it. Example, the night derby map with a lot of glowing lights objects that is focused to make the map looks good in dark, but there are not too many normal objects around it.
    You then can see at your fps if it's good enough, the higher it is, the less lag your map will be. Then you can hold F5 and look at streaming memory used, the lower it is, the less lag your map will be.


    7. Find a good weather that fits the theme.

    Weather 17 and 18 is good for a desert theme, 16 for a theme with lots of destruction, 9 for a scary kind of theme and 7 if you want it to look normal but not all sunny and happy.
    Weather may also support making your map less lag, rain storm weather may increase lag, there is also some foggy weather which reduce visibility distance (draw distance) but decrease lag. Avoid using weather id > 22 as they are abnormal. If you really have to use the weather, pick the correct time, as the combination of time and weather really matter to make your map good.
    In fact, you can also browse the weather and its timing from the same source site:
    https://dev.prineside.com/gtasa_weather_id/


    If you wanted to get more mapping tips, you can google it, you can find some good reference like in SA-MP forums or MTA:SA forums (with exception, you are using different editor), like this one
    http://forum.sa-mp.com/showthread.php?t=652690
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    • #3
      Well this is helpful i wanted to create a map but i didn't get some few tips.. Thank you for making it clear to me
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      • #4
        I got some pre made maps or say ready made they are de_nuke from cs and fy_neverdanger also from cs want agood event tip for these two CTF or Siege or LTS or tdm which is good? I post this because i really wanted help on these maps.
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