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CMT's The Silent Cartographer: Evolved Media Month! (The month is now over)

Media have arrived

#1 User is offline   teh lag 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 02:55 AM

Edit:

Quote

This is the end of media month. Having spent nearly 30 days making this happen, TSC:E will be going fairly if not fully dark again for quite a while, probably until the lead-up to the map's release; making sure everything is public-ready takes a lot of time and effort, and we're very eager to bring our full attention back to developing the map. Still, keep an eye out for more tidbits; as soon as we've got a comfortable lock on a release window, we'll let everybody know -- in the meantime, check through the OP to make sure you didn't miss anything, and enjoy the last trailer!


Week 1
Monday - Media Month Announcement; "Brute Pool" Encounter Playthrough
Wednesday - New Tag Tech
Friday - "Security Station Pit" Overview

Week 2
Monday - "Interior" Encounter Playthrough
Wednesday - Weapon Art; AR, DMR, PR
Friday - Forerunner Art

Week 3
Monday - "Beach" Encounter Playthrough
Wednesday - TSC:E's Weapon Design Philosophy
Friday - HCE's Cinematic Animations

Week 4
Tuesday - Frag Grenade Particle Breakdown
Thursday - "Cartographer" Encounter Playthrough

One year ago today (actually yesterday but Halomods was having server troubles), we announced The Silent Cartographer: Evolved, a from-the-ground-up reconstruction and reimagining of the classic Halo level. A separate project from SPv3 proper, it has been the primary focus of the team's efforts ever since we released our Truth & Reconciliation demo.

Since then, we've mostly gone dark. Building a quality singleplayer map from scratch takes an immense amount of time and effort, especially when we're replacing nearly all stock assets with our own custom-made content -- two and a half years after modern CMT's resurrection and we've still got nigh a dozen major things on the to-do list -- but the map itself has finally grown to the point where we're comfortable giving you guys a better look.

In fact, TSC:E has grown to the point where simply tossing out a video and some screenshots before vanishing as quickly as we re-appeared feels like doing both the map and the team an injustice. So, we'll be turning the next three weeks into a prolonged media release, full of new stuff our ridiculously hard-working artists and designers have been itching to show off. Fear not - this will not have the same fate as the SPv3 ViDoc series (which is on hold until Masterz, who spearheaded that effort, can resolve his computer issues), as we've been preparing for this for the better part of a month.

To start, here's a video playthrough of a TSC:E encounter -- the Brute Pool. More videos like this will be deployed every Monday, with additional content coming every Wednesday and Friday, all the way up until a final video on Monday the 22nd. Enjoy, and check back regularly for more updates!



#2 User is offline   2kool2snip3 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 06:29 AM

Nice work guys! keep it up! I'd like to see vehicles in action. Just a suggestion for battles that involves vehicles, you could make the music as 'reclaimer' from the Halo 2 OST

#3 User is offline   robert2555 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 10:01 AM

when we can dowload map B30 Level - The Silent Cartographer

#4 User is offline   JJJowhn07 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 10:06 AM

View Postrobert2555, on 02 July 2013 - 10:01 AM, said:

when we can dowload map B30 Level - The Silent Cartographer


when it's finished of course, patience is always nice ^_^/>

#5 User is offline   iBloxman 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 10:48 AM

Hey my friend Cartagropher Nex is working on a graphics mod similar to what you guys are doing but for Halo: Combat Evolved and for multiplayer not singleplayer. His youtube is nosindustries or just look up Halo: HD Rat Race comparison. The video is slightly older than what we have now in the mod. But after that video he got an unprotected cmt spv3 map from the truth and reconciliation from a CmT guy. Now he is wondering if he could just have the newer HUD to replace his old cmt spv3 one (from truth and reconciliation). He already has everything else he needs (Weapons, grenades, sounds, etc) but all he needs is the updated spv3 hud. Do you think you can get it to him? His Xfire is tofher3 if you need to talk to him or give it to him.

#6 User is offline   teh lag 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 03:34 PM

Our general policy is and continues to be that if we release something, then you can use it in whatever you want; if we're still working on something we'll usually hold onto it until it's done. Our hud is by no means done right now, so unfortunately people will have to wait if they want to use it for themselves.

#7 User is offline   iBloxman 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 04:20 PM

View Postteh lag, on 02 July 2013 - 03:34 PM, said:

Our general policy is and continues to be that if we release something, then you can use it in whatever you want; if we're still working on something we'll usually hold onto it until it's done. Our hud is by no means done right now, so unfortunately people will have to wait if they want to use it for themselves.

But if the map is finished it will be protected and people can't use it?

#8 User is offline   Jaz 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 05:27 PM

View PostiBloxman, on 02 July 2013 - 04:20 PM, said:

But if the map is finished it will be protected and people can't use it?


They gave away the password for A50. I expect they'll do the same again since they've already said we can use whatever tags we want from the maps.

Not sure whether they'll be complete though since HEK+ tends to break OS tags. :/

#9 User is offline   EdSnaider 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 09:29 PM

The video is down o.o

#10 User is offline   teh lag 

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 10:10 PM

Thanks, fixed it.

#11 User is offline   nintendo9713 

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 01:11 AM

Awesome! Really looking forward to playing it.

#12 User is offline   Veegie 

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 03:44 AM

Pretty cool stuff. Definitely fun to still pass this stuff around the studio.

#13 User is offline   zealotmystic 

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 05:40 AM

What I see from the new ViDoc (OR WHATEVER YOU WANT TO CALL IT)

1) Good ol AR now has 50 ammo clip? Hmm, feels like a Halo1 AR, and I hate those ARs. Is it like the new replacement of the SMG?
2) What were those red coloured plasma grenades?
3) LOOKS BEAUTIFUL
4) You died in the clip (whoever who was playing it)
5) PICK UP THE DAMN CARBINE! MY FAV WEAPON!

Keep it up guys! Kudos to u all!

#14 User is offline   Winger 

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 06:15 AM

Looks good! About the Red Plasma Grenades: do they have different explosion effects?

This post has been edited by Winger: 04 July 2013 - 06:29 AM


#15 User is offline   teh lag 

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 01:59 AM

It's Friday! And so I'm here to give an overview of another area in the TSC:E map: the Security Station Pit. This environment was designed to promote widely varied combat according to the player's preferences, and it's one of our favorites in the mission so far. As with the original level, you'll need to fight your way in here to deactivate the island's security system in order to enter the main Cartographer facility. However, this area is quite different from its counterpart in Halo 1...

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(Note: Being much more complex and having gone through many more iterations, there's still a good bit of visual work left to bring this area up to the same quality as displayed in Monday's pool video; jazzing up the main structure and adding more terrain features, for example. So don't worry if you spot some errant UVs or smoothing or that the structures look bland - we're already working on polishing it all up.)

Part I: Introduction

The Security Pit was born out of necessity: other changes to the level prevented us from placing the entrance on a high cliff overlooking the Pelican crash site as in the original Silent Cartographer. (Rather than at the the cliffs' edge, it is now located deep inside the island.) However, we wanted to use these changes as an opportunity to make the security station one of the most defining and memorable parts of the map. The crux of the new plan was to invert the original situation the player was presented with: the structure was to be below ground, not above, and the player's decision to jump down immediately or patiently descend was to occur when entering, not exiting.

From our initial idea, we developed layout and encounter concepts, drawing inspiration primarily from snippets of Assault on the Control Room, ODST's Crater firefight map, and the waterfall-sniper section of Delta Halo. We used then created a 3d mockup of the area, which was gradually refined until we had something that we were happy with. Siliconmaster then used the mockup as a reference piece for creating the area's actual geometry, while BobtheGreatII put together structure pieces. After over a month of hard work, everything finally came together.

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We've still got a lot of work to do here - we've been doing the level in iterative cycles of design and polish, and so as noted this area is not yet up to the standards we're holding the final product to (those unseemly giant boulders are placeholders for eventual BSP upgrades, I swear!). Even so, we are all very proud of how it has come out.

II: Encounter Path 1: Frontal Assault

After clearing the preceding area, the player reaches a clearing and is presented with two main paths: one leads back to the island's interior, directly to the Pit; the other leads further out into the open, taking the player behind the rock wall that runs down the middle of the area. Depending on which path the player takes, they have four different approaches with which they can assault the Covenant camp guarding the security station. The latter path also forks out to lead the player to a separate area (which the player can also choose to assault if they choose) - however, that is being saved for another time...

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If the player is still in good shape, they can charge directly towards the Pit. This path will place them in the sights of a Covenant squad patrolling the entrance to the Pit's rim.

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Unless the player is well-equipped, this frontal assault will quickly prove dangerous: as they advance, they will begin to draw fire from defense forces patrolling the lower layers of the chasm, which become alerted to the player's presence and move into defensive positions. Gradually, the player will be able to move down the area - optionally taking any number of jump-shortcuts down the chasm (at the expense of having enemy forces shooting down at them and the potential for taking fall-damage). Once the player makes it to the bridge, a well-placed grenade can take out a group of jackals and the Shade turret; if a player can do that they will be able to proceed down the chasm walls much more easily.

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III: Encounter Path 2: Skirting the Rim

An alternate means of attack is to stay to the left. Not only will this more cautious approach give the player the element of surprise against the rim guards, it will give them a vantage point with plenty of cover to thin out the other enemies on the Pit's upper levels before proceeding further down. Additionally, it will give them a clear jump down to a path looping around the Pit's entire left side, allowing them to continue to stay above the fray while still approaching the station.

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IV: Encounter Path 3: Coming from Behind

Both of these approaches require the player to be prepared for combat - either with the stamina to survive a frontal assault or the equipment to pick off enemies from the distance. If the player doesn't want to dive into an intense firefight, it will be more advantageous to take long way around. Going to the right and following the rock wall, the player will find only minimal resistance (assuming they do not alert the enemies in the adjacent area), and will be able to replenish their supplies before returning to battle.

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Following the wall all the way to the end, they will end up at the rear of the rim guards' camp, removing their range advantage and allowing the player to manage them more easily without ranged weapons. They can then continue in a mirror-image of the "Skirting the Rim" approach, staying to the right until they can jump directly onto the structure; or they can once again gradually move down the chasm.

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V: Encounter Path 4 - Going Down...

Halfway down the rock wall, the player will encounter a door - it leads to an elevator that will take them to the Pit's bottom level, allowing them to bypass the entire rim guard. However, they will have to proceed cautiously; even a well-equipped player will become overwhelmed by enemies above them if they are unprepared to make a quick break through the units guarding the entrance. If you choose to take this shortcut, it may be to your advantage to soften up some of the guards from another angle before charging through. Fortunately, the elevator can also facilitate a quick retreat to safety, allowing the player to rethink their strategy without having to start over.

(Opposite the elevator's upper-level entrance is another path to the adjacent area. A player can seamlessly weave between the two encounters as they please.)

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VII: The End

That's it. We'll have a new gameplay video for you guys this coming Monday - stay tuned!

View PostWinger, on 04 July 2013 - 06:15 AM, said:

Looks good! About the Red Plasma Grenades: do they have different explosion effects?


The red Plasma Grenades you see are placeholder models for the EMP grade, which we showed off last year.

#16 User is offline   TailsTheGamer 

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 02:12 AM

This looks like a fun area and looks like it would make a nice Firefight area.

#17 User is offline   GreatCesar1 

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 04:13 AM

what were the other maps besides TSC that are being added? a10, a30, b40..?

#18 User is offline   Henskelion 

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 08:41 AM

Great to see a new update after several months of nada. I had actually thought the project have been dead in the water due to real-life issues.


I do like how much thought you've put into taking one of TSC's most straightforward, linear battles and recreated it with a complex new area design that would allow the player angles of attack. It's also a bit more sensible that the original in terms of the in-game logic, since I always wondered why the Covenant left such a weak guard force attached to that area, and why the security station itself was just a small sloping corridor that had a little non-descript forest pathway leading up to it, instead of the complex tower multi-story bunker you guys have turned it into.

I guess my only problem would be that the cliffs still look really shoddy in the way the grass and rock never seem to cross over or merge; the grass simply terminates 100% as soon as it reaches the cliff's edge. I assume, given your character and weapon models, that the cliffs are either placeholders, or due to engine limitations there is just simply nothing to be done about it.

Also, random complement but I really like that you guys have swapped the inexplicable English voiceovers for the Brutes with the alien barks and snarls from Reach. Maybe it makes me a huge nitpicker but I always hated the way that Brutes and post-Halo:CE Elites would speak in better English than the human characters. It only served to make the Covenant seem more human, which annoyed me since I always thought the original game did a good job of making the Covenant feel truly "alien".

#19 User is offline   spandi343 

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 06:28 PM

Can't believe you guys are still sticking with such an old game . Great respect for you guys.
I really like what you have done with the maps but IMO the assault rifle of the truth and reconciliation was better .
Great work guys and i have all the patience in the world to play the maps that you guys are making

#20 User is offline   nintendo9713 

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Posted 08 July 2013 - 05:18 PM

Those are some awesome screenshots!

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