Tutorial: In the Beginning Part 5 Last edited 1 year ago2022-10-10 22:55:10 UTC

"In the Beginning" Series
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Now you should have a couple of rooms connected by a corridor with walls that look good and a little mood lighting. Remember the first level of Half-Life? Where you got to walk around and interact with the items in the rooms. Each of the areas was pretty much defined by what sort of additions were in the rooms such as desks, lamps or lab tables. Furniture is just as important as good lighting and texture, to give your level realism.

Most of the work in this tutorial will be done using the Object Bar and inserting items that are already available.

Prefab Objects

Prefabs are only available in Valve Hammer Editor and may not be available in other editors such as J.A.C.K.
One of the simplest ways to add details is through the use of prefabs. Prefabs are prefabricated objects that are stored in libraries. Let's add a number of prefabs to this level from the prefab library.
The prefab libraryThe prefab library
So now we have some things in our office, here are a few tips. The black chair created by the Prefab factory is a func_pushable entity. If you leave it free in the room it can be pushed around. If you don't want it to move, then it's a good idea to select it and click to World. By doing this you won't be able to push it and it won't make a moving sound every time you brush against it.
Putting the Fun in Funiture! (You're fired - Ant)Putting the Fun in Funiture! (You're fired - Ant)
In the second room I have added Modern shelves, south and Metal shelves (transformed 180 Z axis) from the random objects category. (The 'south' modern shelves are bound to a func_door for some reason, so click to World unless you actually want the shelves to act as a door.) The metal shelves have four boxes on them. You can adjust the Spawn on Break properties with the Map -> Entity Report by selecting the properties of each box. If you choose to spawn any item other than a weapon, ammo for instance, then you will find that if you break the box the ammo will fall through the shelf [this is a bug - it doesn't happen when you build the prefab yourself].

Have fun inserting prefabs. Just remember to check their properties as most of them are designed to function in one way or another. Practice transforming and scaling prefabs, so that they look right. What you're trying to achieve is playability balanced with good looks. There are numerous resource sites that have downloadable prefabs, but use caution and check them before putting them into your maps.

If you have any ideas or suggestions, why not add them to the forum.

1 Comment

Commented 4 months ago2023-12-07 14:41:36 UTC Comment #105710
The original Part 5 of Worldcraft 2.x's tutorial covers more things than just prefabs (which aren't available in JACK, which made people skip this part and miss other basic detailing things)

For now, I'll copy-paste just this part, until there's an agreement on a more permanent inclusion of this part or the whole of WC's original tutorial series into the wiki.
Excerpt from wc.hlp
Details. These are the things that aren't necessary to the gameplay of your level, but they do help to give it a certain atmosphere, which is essential. Right now, the tutorial level is just a couple boxes separated by a tube. There really isn't anything in it to draw your attention besides a flickering light. This must change!

Once again, here is out baseline picture...
User posted image
Now, I'm thinking..."What are these rooms??" This is the main question that should help you decide what to put into a room as details. This could be some type of control room. In that case, there would be some type of computer equipment. Most places will have some type of ventilation system. Let's say this room has it exposed. Some pipes, running to...who knows where? Basically, you have free reign to add all the touches to the level that make it "yours".

Go ahead and add stuff to your tutorial level, or load up tut5.rmf in Worldcraft to see my example.
User posted image
As you can see from the above pictures, details make a big difference. Some of the things done were:
  • signs - the biohazard sign and the emergency shower sign give the area a realistic look. Half-Life's texture set includes a number of signs that can be used within your levels.
  • furniture and accessories - in the starting room, there is a swivel chair and ashtray, and a shelving unit with some random boxes on it. None of this would matter in gameplay of course, but it gives the level an interesting look.
  • exits - although they don't go anywhere, and in fact do not even open, I've inset two doors in the level to make it appear like this is actually a part of a building. It is important to make the player feel like he is not just being dropped into a box.
  • interactive objects - the medikit box on the wall can open, dispensing health. (It is actually a rotating door with its "healthvalue" key set to "15", so that when the player opens the door, 15 health points are transferred to him). The boxes on the shelves are explodable if shot.
  • shaping - the immediate tendency for most people when they start editing is to make everything square and flat. Square rooms, doors flush with walls, and things like that. It is important to get to know the three main types of brush shaping Worldcraft has to offer: Carving, Clipping, and Vertex Manipulation.
Sounds like fun...
Sound is another important aspect of a level. Up until now, the only sound you'd hear in your level is your own footsteps. Let's add some other sounds now. The computer, pipes, and flickering light are candidates for sounds.
User posted image
To give an object a sound, you need to place an ambient_generic entity near it. The only thing you'll need to do in the entity properties is specify which WAV file to play.

Well, from the first tutorial to now, you can see quite a bit of evolution at work.
User posted image
I tried to grab the accompanying tutorial files but the installer cannot be run. sorry.

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