Solitude (Working Title) is a PSP and PC game using a heavily modified Quake engine, expanding upon the story of Halo: Combat Evolved. Expect a great, brand new single player story and all of the most popular multiplayer modes from Halo: CE! Our team is working hard to bring the game to you as fast as possible so be sure to stay tuned for any new updates. More information can be found on our site at Note: We are NOT ripping anything from any of Halos! All our models and textures are our own, made by using the original Halo art only as reference.

Report article RSS Feed Solitude terrian making and two gameplay videos !

Today I'm going to talk about how I've started using Nem's MEGA Terrain Generator to, well generate terrain ! We also have two gameplay videos (Online test) to show you guys !

Posted by Samuk on Apr 8th, 2009

Hey guys,

Today I'm going to talk about how I've started using Nem's MEGA Terrain Generator to, well generate terrain !

Mapping for Solitude is fun but limiting, there is only some much one can do with brush's. As we're attempting to make a full-sized campaign, outside terrains are very important, but as Solitude doesn't support any form of height maps making terrains is a hard and tedious task. That was before I found Nem's terrain generator. 

Before I found Nem's terrain generator us mappers had to manual make hundreds of triangles and manually mold the terrain like so. This process had to be done for every single hill, bump, dip, etc. This would mean that mappers would spend hour(s) perfecting their terrain if large enough. This usually would take a whole mapping session to finish.

With Nem's terrain generator terrains like this are easily achievable.

There are numerous ways of making terrain in the terrain generator:

A) Hand carve it, raise and lower the ground to your liking using a grid. If you want even more control you can move each vertices.

B) Geometric, I'd call this random with some control. Great for getting ideas or getting a base terrain to start off with.

C) The most important feature, Nem's MEGA Terrain Generator supports height maps ! For those that don't know what a height map is; height maps are images with lighter and darker parts. The dark parts are lower altitude and the light parts are higher altitude.

There are more ways but lets move on, shall we.

Now I will be showing you what the terrain looks like in Worldcraft, and later on ingame. For this example I'll use this terrain.

I exported it to an RMF format then opened it in Worldcraft; here is the result.

It may look great, but when you take a closer look, you can see how unoptimized Nem's MEGA Terrain Generator is. The way it makes the terrain is  by automatically making loads of triangles and then shapes the terrain using the triangles, a faster way of what I showed you in Worldcraft.

Now, I start optimizing it. Do you see a difference with the last image and this image ?

How about now ?

Well, now its ready to be put ingame. All I do now is add a spawn point and a temporary sky, compile and launch the game !

I hope this look into Solitude map making has interested you and inspired you to start making maps !

Since you've read it this far, I'll reward you with two Solitude online beta game videos !

Thanks for reading !

- SamUK

Post comment Comments
Fragger_ Apr 8 2009, 10:21am says:

Why are you using worldcraft and not radiant?
I thought this was Quake based...

0 votes     reply to comment
TheHappyFriar Apr 9 2009, 10:00am replied:

worldcraft used to be a free quake-based game map editor. Then valve bought it & make if valve specific.

It was ~as nice (better in some respects, not in others) then gtk.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Plasmatic Apr 20 2009, 4:38pm replied:

can you guys make the needler faster, make the firing on all weapons to have light effects (unless they are not supposed to have light effects in halo 1) and when you have the right textures for the gun fire, make the fire textures blink faster, it looks like, on the assualt rifle, that the texture stays on thescreen for a few seconds and then blinks and stays again.

PS: sorry for adding this as a reply, I ment to add as new

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 8 2009, 10:25am says:

Preference, with the handy Quake adapter for worldcraft I can use whats familiar to me.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Robots! Apr 8 2009, 10:31am says:

looks very nice... theres gonna be multiplayer, right?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 8 2009, 10:41am says:

Yes, first release is the multiplayer beta. :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Weeman45 Apr 8 2009, 11:43am replied:

HELL YEAH! multiplayer looks promising :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Robots! Apr 8 2009, 11:22am says:

woot! cant wait!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Schroz Apr 8 2009, 1:09pm says:

muzzle flashes need a lot of work, if you're going to use images, add a lot of alpha and color blending

-4 votes     reply to comment
iwantalife Apr 8 2009, 3:00pm replied:

It is said like every freaking update that THE MUZZLE FLASHES ARE TEMPORARY!!! Don't post stupid comments like that!

+2 votes     reply to comment
stat1cshade Apr 9 2009, 10:27am replied:

calm down he was only giving his opinion he might not have read every single line of the updates or comments

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 9 2009, 3:01pm replied:


Staticshade is right. Not everybody reads my boring updates.

+1 vote     reply to comment
taakuu Apr 8 2009, 1:25pm says:

very good job!

+1 vote     reply to comment
iwantalife Apr 8 2009, 3:03pm says:

And so basically this terrain generator that is used in the "Sims" games right?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 8 2009, 3:06pm says:


+1 vote     reply to comment
iwantalife Apr 8 2009, 3:08pm says:

why not? (and yes I read the update I'm just interested in knowing what is different)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 8 2009, 3:11pm says:

Its a completly different terrain generator that supports height maps.

+1 vote     reply to comment
iwantalife Apr 8 2009, 3:14pm says:

okay and what you were doing before could not do that =)
alright I think i got it now Sami anyway good update glad to see more progress being made!

+1 vote     reply to comment
dandi8 Apr 9 2009, 12:11am replied:

We, the devs, were producing Solitude maps using this technique since the very beginning (our Blood Gulch terrain is made using Nem's terrain generator, although it's pretty flat compared to what SamUK shown here). Other than that there is also the way of hand-moving the vertices in Worldcraft that you can see on SamUK's profile.

+1 vote     reply to comment
f0rqu3 Apr 8 2009, 6:05pm says:

cool stuff for something you can carry in your pocket!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Armageddon104 Apr 8 2009, 7:48pm says:


+1 vote     reply to comment
Mobster103 Apr 8 2009, 10:32pm says:

i dont like the bodies exploding

+1 vote     reply to comment
neod101 Apr 9 2009, 3:08am replied:

The game likely won't have the gore when it's released.

+1 vote     reply to comment
muhu420 Apr 9 2009, 7:26am replied:

I honestly believe the player should choose whether to have gibs enabled. This debate is very repetitive and a nuisance.

+1 vote     reply to comment
haloman100 Apr 9 2009, 12:04am says:

yo what about the aiming a systems is it going to be like that or are u going to make them like halo?

+1 vote     reply to comment
neod101 Apr 9 2009, 3:09am replied:

We've got the proper crosshairs, they're just not in the game yet.

+1 vote     reply to comment
ÐiamonÐ Apr 9 2009, 12:44am says:

The reload animation on the pistol shows the clip the entire time. My advice would be to lower the clip away from sight, and then be placed back into the gun itself, so that it doesn't seem like the player is simply releasing and inserting the clip without actually adding any bullets.

+1 vote     reply to comment
neod101 Apr 9 2009, 3:13am replied:

I noticed it on the sniper rifle, too. We've still got some animation tweaking to do before release, so I'm sure it'll be fixed.

+1 vote     reply to comment
DJ-Ready Apr 9 2009, 12:01pm says:

Terrain mapping in hammer is an art!
And its fun :)

I suppose you absolutely have to use tiling textures in Solitude due to engine limitations but for HL maps Nems generator is pretty bad

+1 vote     reply to comment
Samuk Apr 9 2009, 12:37pm says:

Aye, for Half Life Terrain mapping is an art. For Solitude its a total disaster. Not engine limitations, platform limitations.

But why is it ''pretty bad''.

PS: Great job with NNK, maps look great.

+1 vote     reply to comment
DJ-Ready Apr 9 2009, 1:12pm replied:

Because its only uniform triangles. You can get much better results by smart usage of textures + geometry .. if you do it by hand :)

But yeah .. it works well for solitude
Keep it up :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
haloman100 Apr 12 2009, 8:31pm says:

so when do you guys think it will be ready?

+1 vote     reply to comment
muhu420 Apr 13 2009, 9:14am says:

Hopefully before 4/20. :P

+1 vote     reply to comment
Aaron_Savont Apr 28 2009, 6:54pm says:

Hey Guys i was wondering if the light effects on the needlers needles was going to be that bright, or was that just thrown is as temporary?

+1 vote     reply to comment
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