Thursday, September 23, 2010

Nos' Tower - New Textures

Well, I don't have the tower to show you exactly, but tonight I made myself a 'test cell' if you will, to let me get a look at the new textures in game.

As anyone who's GECKed can tell you: GECK view and game view can be wildly different, so I needed an on-the-ground view through the actual engine, to determine what needed working on.

Thought I'd share a bit.

Not ideal screenshots, no. I definitely need to pick better lighting. Still, it should give you an idea of what's going on.

Textures still need a little work. There's a spot at the edge of the floor tiles, for example, that isn't showing up perfectly. Either I had the selection box mis-sized when I added the marble, or the bump map is screwed up. Either way, it needs to be fixed.

This is also the first time I've had to work much with multilevel rooms. Since most of my cells have been in the Vault set before (for obvious reasons) I'm having to learn some new tricks to work with this Underworld based set. Seem to be picking it up okay, though.

There's also a second set of textures that's basically reversed. Light marble with dark trim. That test area isn't done, though, so it'll have to be shown later.

I can already tell you it's going to be a decently sized mod package. While there are only five textures, there are a hundred or more room pieces and accompanying stuffs. At the moment it comes in just below 12.5mb. Not huge by any means.

So... Since I'm at the metaphorical ground floor... now's the time, Sports Fans. Let me know what you think, specifics of what you'd like to see; what would be a turn-off, etc.

Can't promise I'll do whatcha want, but I'll consider any reasonable request.


In retrospect, I should probably mention the few things that will be off-limits from the start:

No jail.

No slave-taking.

No roving bands of wasteland avengers.

No sorters - at least not initially; those things are a pain and a half to script, and I'd rather spend my GECK time on other areas.

You probably won't be able to see the tower from the banks of the Potomac. I know, you should... but it seems I'll have to re-generate the LOD for the entire Wasteland worldspace. Estimates thus far have placed this at around eighty or ninety megabytes. I'll keep investigating, but don't hold your breath.


  1. Looks like it may have a warm homey felling. The white dot marbel in the last picture looks a bit much maybe. One at the bottom of the stairs with a cool looking Nos Towers Logo in the center of it would look good.

  2. The white centered tile really bugs me. The game engine is screwing up somehow, and it's being way too reflective.

    This is how it's supposed to look.

    But for some reason, the game wants it to light up like a mini-sun. I've got to either mess with the lighting, or re-do the normal map to change the reflectivity.

    It sucks, because the thing looks so cool in Nifscope and the GECK - but, again: GECK-view isn't game-view, which is why I have to do test setups.

  3. Yeah, I was about to compliment you on what an unconventional and interesting idea it was to put lights in the floor. There's gotta be a way to make it not so reflective, and you're right that it's probably in the normal maps. This is one of the things I've never understood about the whole HDR lighting deal. In my book putting a surreal, dream-like glow like a radioactive aura around everything does not equate to realistic lighting. When I look out my window the grass is not glowing. I don't know what these developers must be thinking when they come up with that kind of crap.

    Anyway, the textures otherwise are looking good. I know from my brief stint at doing those Ayleid ruins textures that this kind of thing is no small undertaking, what with all the different pieces and such, especially if you're doing more than one set of replacement textures (I did like over half a dozen variations or something; don't even remember now). Just saying that I understand the work you're putting into this and you have whatever moral support I can offer.

    I also like the sound of having a NosCo logo appear in there somewhere. If there can be a Vault-Tec, there sure as hell can be a NosCo!

  4. Yeah, I never got the HDR glowy thing either. Didn't get it in Oblivion, don't now. But, in the Gamebryo engine, half the neat effects (like glowing nuka quantums) only appear with HDR on, so whatdya gonna do?

    And I can't promise anything, but I'm going to try...

    See, the three of us have had the same idea here. While I was working on the textures, I was looking at the black tile with white circle; and its reverse form, and thinking how great it would be to have a NosCo logo in the center.

    Not necessarily every tile... but like one at entryways or in strategic spots.

    I had fought down the urge, thinking it too pretentious... but with both of you suggesting it, I suppose I've got to give it a shot now. So, I'll have to go a'lookin' for a nice calligraphic font, I guess...

  5. I'm in full support of pretentiousness if it's tastefully done. I'm still gonna (someday when I'm not feeling like such a bitch) release a Doom map with those textures with my name on them, strategically placed in secret areas and such. Oh yeah, they're gonna remember the name...

  6. Yes Nos co needs a logo. Grim reaper or something of the sort. A pair of crossed 16s and the name around it, hay?

    I think the key to the white circle tile is to put it just in strategic places. With the logo on it of cource.


    ...Or are my evil overlord tendencies just showing through again?

    @Sgt Ovakil: I'm probably going to just stick with text. Small pictures tend not to show up well in textures. I was thinking more like a swanky Vegas casino. You know, the ones with the name in the center of the tile in stylized text?

    Nothing super outlandish - but it'll probably depend on what fonts I can come up with.

  8. Nos, whatever works for you buddy. I just toss it all out there to jump start that ticker of yours.

    Say wile your on the early stages is the bedroom area going to be alot smaller than in vault 1? I never could feel like it was home. It is kinda like camping out at the YMCA.

  9. Well, keep in mind that the "bedroom" in Vault 1 was originally set up to be bedroom and office and sitting area, and work room, and medical. It was more like a studio apartment than a bedroom.

    I'm planning to have the player have the entire top floor of the tower to their own personal use. I'd like it set up like a suite - again, think swanky hotel.

    A large 'sitting room' type of place in the center where the elevator will let out; then a separate bedroom with walk-in closet off of that.

    The room with the bed in it I'd like to keep to about 10x15 feet at most; because like you I don't care much for the one massive room with a bed in the center.

    There'll be display space; a bobblehead stand, probably a display case or two. Jacuzzi and probably a sauna too (depending on how well I can get that strip-script to behave...), all separate from the actual sleeping area.

    Medical will be downstairs in its own dedicated area, and there'll be a work room for storage and the work bench, too. Not sure whether to put weapons an ammunition in a central armory, or keep the stuff in the penthouse.

  10. That gives me more of an idea of what your thinking. Well closer anyhow.

    As for were to put the armory. As long as its in the path from the player living area to the entrence should be user frendly. Maybe a floor under the top floor with elavator access, and a second access by stairs from the players home area. Not a door in the bedroom, but close by.

  11. Still not sure what I'm going to do about the armory.

    On the one hand, there needs to be one for the security staff down on the main floor.

    On the other, I know I personally like keeping at least some of my stash in the bedroom, so several toys are always handy if the need should arise.

    Am thinking I may need two. One real armory for the guards that use communal weapons lockers that the NPCs can take what they like from, and a second smaller one for just the player with player-owned containers that the NPCs can't borrow out of.

    But I also don't want to make the containers overly complicated; so I'm not sure. I'll have to wait and see how the setup of the building lends itself, I guess.

  12. Guards! I forgot all about them. Something I have to say about them. I was so happy when you put guards in the tunnels, and I was able to take the ones in the vault out. Befor that it was like being in prison with all the guards running around my happy home armed. Maybe Patty Hurst may fell at home with all them privet guards in the living areas but I never could.

  13. Yeah, I'm not actually big on guards myself. Don't use any in V1 anymore.

    The girls seem to lay the smack down on anything that sticks its head in without much trouble.

    But I think the Tower should have some, at least downstairs; and in the front building on the shore.

  14. Oh for sure there needs to be a few guards downstairs with a security office, and a couple inside the building thats going to be on the shore.

    I was woundering, is the on shore building going to have an entrence to a tunnel that leeds to the isle, or the basment?

  15. Planning on there being two entrances, at the moment.

    One on the west side of the Potomac, down towards where the boat to Point Lookout docks. That'll be the building. It will need to be repaired by the player to access the basement, where it'll connect to a tunnel running under the river out to the tower.

    Once repaired and manned, it'll be a small outpost of your forces.

    The other access will be a tunnel hatch near the car park by Rivet City. The hatch will lead into a small, secondary tunnel that leads into the Tower's maintenance basement. This one will be inhabited by respawning ferals, so going in that way can get interesting.