Since 2004 I've taught myself, and others, in just about every discipline the Source engine offers.

Image RSS Feed Screens
Portfolio: jb_openday_final Portfolio: Enclave Portfolio: NightFall dream (collab)
RSS Feed My Blogs

Has it really been over a year since my last post here? Time for an update.


Enclave apartment
Creating world: easy. Populating world: not.

I've long since abandoned Enclave, as it began to demand too much re-engineering. Half-Life 2 is a linear rollercoaster and about as far away in design terms from Deus Ex as it is possible to be within the FPS genre. There were also issues with player motivation that would have to have been overcome were I to stick with Gordon "silent protagonist" Freeman.

Despite this, the biggest stumbling block proved to be animation. Promoting Valve's citizens to the foreground made their animation set look extremely pallid, and all my attempts at decompiling the models failed in one way or another. Even if I had succeeded, XSI's SMD importer only half works.

I'd go so far as to call the pre-compiled nature of models one of the fundamental problems with the Source SDK at the moment, at least for those of us working on narrative projects. Valve are releasing the TF2 model sources, and I sincerely hope they follow them up with Half-Life 2's citizens, metrocops and soldiers. Just not in SMD, please!


Openday. Small is beautiful.

After shelving Enclave I drifted away from modding until I discovered Jailbreak: Source. Jailbreak UT2004 is still my favourite multiplayer mod and I inevitably didn't find its Source counterpart quite to my tastes, it being slow and unwieldy, with most games entering a stalemate where each team occupies the other's base. The tug-of-war feel I loved in JB:UT, where releases happened so often that each game became more tense as you came closer and closer to incarcerating the entire enemy team, isn't there.

Instead of moaning on the forums I started on a map that would fix the problems I saw. Unlike the official arenas, jb_openday is small, circular, and has wide open "bases" that are impossible to lock down — each element intended to make matches ebb and flow faster. The speed of each round made escapes pointless, so to keep captured players engaged I removed the ceiling of each jail instead: those inside can shoot out at anyone who tries to walk along the top of the walls (once thrown a gun), and the other team can shoot back in, which with the minigun in hand never fails to entertain.

(A lot of the criticisms here are addressed by Jailbreak 0.6. Guess I'm not the only one who feels this way.)


Quake 3
Quake Live with lagcomp, please.

The biggest problem with Openday is actually its small size, which limits the number of players it can support and makes a lot of matches too quick. But a larger map would have broken down entirely, as player movement is simply dog slow in JB:S. It's part of another malaise with the SDK: that its multiplayer component, HL2DM, is literally HL2 with networking and respawning, and despite its name isn't balanced for the pace of deathmatch play at all.

This is what I'm trying to change with my "pure deathmatch" mod. I want to release, with a Creative Commons license, a simple codebase from which other mod teams can start Quake/UT-like multiplayer projects with fast movement, walljumping, classic DM weapons and hopefully proper gibs — and unlike anything else out there I can think of, blessed lag compensation at the same time. (Shortly after posting this, Tremor appeared on the site.)

At the moment I'm ploughing through creating weapons. The VDC wiki's documentation on the process is either missing or utter crud, which if you're me means writing it anew...and that means laying all the groundwork first!



7 years ago by Varsity 0 comments
Since 2004 I've taught myself, and others, in just about every discipline the Source engine offers.
Start a group Groups


20 members Hardware & Tech

MANN CO. sells only the finest products. We also get in fights.

Mod DB

Mod DB

3,999 members Official

If it's information about Mod DB and ramblings about mods in general that you are after - then you have come to the right place. Welcome to the official...

Old Timers

Old Timers

135 members Official

For all the old skool modders that have stuck by Mod DB from v1 to v4. A lot has changed as over the years as the site moved from a dark v1 to a bright...

Source Developers

Source Developers

983 members Fans & Clans

For people and teams developing mods and games with Valve's Source engine.

Post comment Comments  (10 - 20 of 49)
Raneman25 Apr 26 2010 says:

What is your avatar from?

+6 votes     reply to comment
cW#Ravenblood Apr 14 2010 says:

I still love your avatar :3 x69

+3 votes     reply to comment
[Night_Stalker] Dec 22 2009 says:

Hypnotizing avatar is hypnotizing...

+4 votes     reply to comment
nose-bLeed Dec 19 2009 says:

.....i like your avatar. (^_~)

+3 votes     reply to comment
MrMattWebb Nov 15 2009 says:

You have written some wonderful articles. Great stuff.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Rosend Nov 1 2009 says:

What a lovely avatar... sir...



+1 vote     reply to comment
m82sniper Oct 29 2009 says:

Your avatar... is soo... hypnotizing... Can't stop staring!

+7 votes     reply to comment
xanderkrews Oct 18 2009 says:

rofl i had no idea such a group existed, so thats why i created my own, if you don't mind i will invite myself to yours

+1 vote     reply to comment
aleixoteixeira Aug 28 2009 says:

Your avatar is hypnotizing.

+8 votes     reply to comment
Varsity Creator
Varsity Aug 26 2009 says:

I think I just got my own 13,000th profile view. Where are all these people coming from?

+4 votes   reply to comment
Post a Comment
click to sign in

You are not logged in, your comment will be anonymous unless you join the community today (totally free - or sign in with your social account on the right) which we encourage all contributors to do.

2000 characters limit; HTML formatting and smileys are not supported - text only

Offline Since
Sep 14, 2014
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Member Watch
Track this member
Mod DB Old Timers
Activity Points
294 of 535,857
36 members
Time Online
3 weeks
Site Visits
Profile Visitors
83,951 (10 today)
Private Message
Send Now
Members Only
INtense! friends since Feb 4, 2009
Dwarden friends since Apr 10, 2011
BigBird friends since Nov 13, 2007
ambershee friends since Nov 11, 2007
CargoCult friends since Nov 19, 2007
Crispy friends since Aug 7, 2008
lodle friends since Jun 14, 2009
San-J friends since Nov 10, 2007
Wills friends since Jul 19, 2008
Wraiyth friends since Nov 9, 2007