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Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 12:44 pm
by gulliver-trans
I'm just gonna use this thread as a dumping ground for some things I've learned while trying to design my Halloween level.

#1: For world texture transparency, turning a brush into a func_wall and setting an "alpha" key to a value between 0 and 1 (like 0.5) is a decent method for singleplayer. Qrack does it, Fitzquake mark V does it (but does external tga with an alpha mask poorly, at least in poor lighting). Darkplaces does it (but Darkplaces supports every method well). Quakespasm does it.

EDIT: It seemed all clients disabled transparency when playing online (I assumed just in deathmatch). But I discovered the proquake server tells me that 'alpha' is not a field. So then it seemed that the answer for online transparency is to either hack the proquake server or maybe add "alpha" to defs.qc ? EDIT 2: Adding .alpha to defs.qc is not enough if you're using proquake :(

One answer is (probably) to use protocol 666:

ANSWER: For online play, if you can't/won't use protocol 666, the answer seems to be having a texture name preceded by an opening curly brace, like {texturename , and an *external* texture like (texturename.tga in modname/textures. The external texture will have an alpha channel (Layer->Transparency->Add alpha channel in GIMP). It may not matter if the .wad texture has a color 255 transparency, or that the palette's 255 color may be set to whatever your desired transparent color would be. I'm not sure because I've tried so many things at this point, but the external texture and the curly-brace naming are key. For the record, the surface in question is still a func_wall, though the alpha key has been deleted.

The nice thing about the func_wall and external tga methods is, if your engine doesn't support them, you won't have some ugly pink alpha mask pixels. My image is mostly black, and with the func_wall method, the black is mostly/totally transparent. In Proquake it's solid black, of course, but that's far better than that ugly color 255 "pink".

I assume you could change the palette to make black (or whatever) the transparent color, and maybe I'll still do that. But if you're looking for a universal transparent wall texture solution, the external {texture method seems to be the way to go. Just don't use an alpha value plus another method for Quakespasm, or you'll get full invisibility of the texture.

keywords: fence, grate, see-through, glass, Quake 1 level design, Q1, Quake One

Research links: ... glass.html ... 9&end=1183 ... 66&end=190

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 1:34 pm
by gulliver-trans
Bad Surface Extents (a case study):
I was using a large texture that was stretched out on a wide, flat brush (stretched more along the horizontal than the vertical) by the "Fit" function in NetRadiant's surface inspector ("S"). If I used "Fit" (to brush) it would give me this error. but if I used "Axial", it wouldn't. The solution was to select the whole brush, open Surface Inspector (S) and click Axial. Then, using Select Faces (F), I selected the one face that actually needed the texture, and Fit to that (instead of the whole brush).

So the problem was actually that the big texture was stretched out on the long, thin, "side" faces of the brush. The problem was NOT that the big texture was stretched (fitted) to the front and back faces that I actually cared about.

other keywords: GtkRadiant

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 2:28 pm
by gulliver-trans
Lesser-Known NetRadiant KeyBoard Shortcuts For Novices:

I'll edit this post to include the best keyboard shortcuts that I discover.

(By the way, keys can be rebound by going to Help->Shortcuts list, but this shortcut editor kinda sucks, and won't always warn you about key re-use. It also may require a restart to use new shortcuts. At least it's good for a list of shortcuts)

Ctrl+Shift+Tab: Center all views on the currently selected brush/entity. Best shortcut ever.

Alt+Shift+LeftClick: Select this brush, and deselect all others. ALSO, can cycle through brushes under the cursor with repeated clicks.

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:30 pm
by gulliver-trans
May not finish this map by Halloween, as my priorities have shifted. But I may still release a part of it.

This post is for the one imaginary person who cared :P

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:18 am
by anselmo
Thanks for the lessons!

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:17 pm
by Gunter
You been schooled by the tran man!

Re: Quake 1 Mapping Lessons in 2016

Posted: Sun Jul 15, 2018 10:51 pm
by gulliver-trans
*tips rainbow wig*