Previously referred to as the 'Doom 3 Engine', Tech 4 is id Software's current licensing platform. Powering games such as Doom 3, Quake 4 and Enemy Territory Quake Wars, Tech 4 revolutionized the use of realtime dynamic lighting as well as other technologies.

Post tutorial Report RSS ID TECH 4: Radiant - Mapping Basics

In this tutorial we'll see how to setup the editor for the Id-tech 4 games (Doom 3, Quake 4 and Prey) and build your first playable room. Adding lights and a player_start. This tutorial is maded on Doom 3.

Posted by on - Basic Mapping/Technical - IDTech 4 Tutorials


[1] - Setup The Editor

[2] - Your First Room

[3] - Entities

[4] - Compile & Resources

[5] - Basics Controls

[6] - Credits

[1] - Setup The Editor

Doom 3, Quake 4 and Prey need the same procedure for start the editor. Locate your game executable and make a link on your desktop or where you prefer (usually with the installation of the game you have already a link on the desktop). Right-click on the link and go to properties.

Now you should see "Destination" with the game path, for example:

"C:Program FilesDoom 3DOOM3.exe"

"C:Program Filesid SoftwareQuake 4Quake4.exe"

"C:Program FilesPreyprey.exe"

Now you have to add an addictional line after the quotes for set up the executable for the editor. Just copy and paste:

+set developer 1 +set r_fullscreen 0 +set com_allowConsole 1 +set r_multiSamples 0 +set r_mode X +wait +editor

A little explanation of whats mean the line above:

+set developer 1 - This enable the tools inside the editor, like the FPS or Portals.

+set r_fullscreen 0 - For start the editor in widnow mode.

+set com_allowConsole 1 - With this you can access the console pressing "~" instead of "ctrl + alt + ~".

+set r_multiSamples 0 - For disable the Anti-Aliasing (the editor hate it).

+set r_mode X - Change the X with a value, this command is for the reslution of the editor, 5 is 1024x768.

+wait - This avoid the editor to crash at the startup, but you can delete this if you want.

+editor - This execute the Editor itself.

Now you are ready to start the Editor, press OK on the properties window, and run the link.

[2] - Your First Room

Now the editor is up, you see some different windows, drag them as you prefer.

XY View - In this window you can draw brushes, change the size of them or place models, characters and others.

CAM View - This is the 3D rendition of your map, where you can see the progress in real time.

Z View - This window is usefull for control the height of your brushes and resize them without witch the view on the XY window.

Inspectors View - This is the core of the Editor, in this window you can change or add textures, modify properties of your entity and parameters.

Lets start to build your room in the XY window. Hold the left mouse button on the grid and create a brush 256x256 (note the XY is on Top view by default).

In the 3D window now you can see a planar brush. Now go to the Z window, hold left click and drag the mouse up reaching the 256 height:


Your cube its done but is still solid, so we have to transform it in a room. You can do it by pressing Hollow:



Your room its done, but without textures. Go the Inspectors window, on the bottom there is Media, click on it. Some folder appear in this window, explore on the folder:



Now your room is completely textured with a Caulk, this mean the engine will not load the brushes with this texture for save CPU usage and get a smooth map, but we want to texture the inside of the room.

Deselect all by pressing ESC, with the arrows controls , navigate into the room from the CAM window. here we have to select the sides of the room, you can select each side pressing CTRL+SHIFT+LeftClick, select all the sides inside the room, and return again on the Inspectors window.

As before you can chose the texture from Media, use the one you prefer. I used:


Now your room is complete, lets place the entities.

[3] - Entities

At this state the room is completly dark ingame, we have to place a light. Go to the XY View, right click in the centre of the room and select light. Adjust the height of the light in the Z window, the light need to be inside the room.


Now we need also a player start position or the map will not work. Deselect the light pressing ESC, right click on the XY view, and select info/info_player_start and adjust the height positioning the info_player_start on the ground of your room.


The room its done, now click on file and save as. The path of the map need to be into your base folder of the game for example:

X:Program FilesDoom 3basemaps

X:Program Filesid Softwareq4basemaps

X:Program FilesPreybasemaps

Save for now with the name "test" (without quotes)

Don't change the folder name of maps, or you can't run your level.

[4] - Compile

Last step of this tutorial, all you have to done now is to compile the map. You can do this in two ways, the first is to bring down the game by pressing F2 from the editor, and then "~" for show the console, and type this:

dmap test

Wait the process to finish. The second way is doable by the editor. On the top menu go to BSP and then click bsp.

All its done, now you have only to run the map and see your work, close the editor, bring up the console and type:

map test

The result:



[5] - Basics Controls

SHIFT+LeftClick - Select a Brush

CTRL+SHIFT+LeftClick - Select a Side of the Brush

ESC - Deselect the Brush

SPACEBAR - Clone the Brush

A - Look Up (CAM View)

Z - Look Down (CAM View)

D - Raise Up (CAM View)

C - Raise Down (CAM VIEW)

Arrows - Movememnts on axis Z (CAM View)

[6] - Credits

Author: Nicola "Neurological" Capecci





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Hey Neuro! Nice tutorial, good detail and I personally like the downloadable map test to see and compare it to ones own map. Good work!

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Thanks heaps Neuro, hoping to used the engine for a uni assignment, seeing as it is GLP. This was nice to find.
Sorry for double post but thought actual account would be better. :)

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