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 Post subject: DOOM3/QUAKE4 Map Optimization Tips
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2005 5:37 am 
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Since this forum will probably come back to life when Q4 hits the shelves, I'll post some stuff I've learned (mostly the hard way) when it comes to optimizing D3 engine maps.

The big to-do about D3 is the lights, per pixel rendering, shadows and all that fancy stuff. So, it should come as no surprise that how you use lights in D3 will factor in a great deal when it comes to your in game FPS. Also, an FYI, surfaces can no longer cast light in D3. So there are no 'light textures' that cast light now. Everything is accomplished with pointlights.

The best thread that I've seen concerning good light usage, optimization and trouble shooting is this one by Raven (of Raven developing Q4). ... pic&t=4505

Basically, you can't drop lights all over a map like you could in Quake3. The more light volumes hitting a particular surface, the bigger the hit on FPS. So, you need to be very careful when lighting a map. Just take a good look at a lot of the DOOM3 maps. Lots of completely unlit areas. A good way to avoid this is to keep your brushes small. Even long walkways - just chop them up into sections so that every light along the way isn't hitting one big surface.

By default, D3 lights have 'shadows' enabled when adding them to the map. Use these carefully as well. Especially in large open areas. Theyll create a big FPS hit if abused. I'd actually suggest turning shadows off on all your lights when you add them. Then enable them as you see fit to get the effect you're ultimately after.

The command to see speeds is now 'r_showprimitives 1'
Use 'con_noprint 0' to get them to show up on the screen, and not just in the console.
And of course r_showtris 1, 2, and 3 to view triangles.

Speeds should be in the 70-80k range. I'll be interested to see what they are in the Q4 multiplayer maps. They may be lower.

In Q3, players could control patch divisions through the Setup screen. This doesn't seem to exist in D3 and its explicitly set by the mapper. When you put a curve into your map, be sure to go to the Surface Inspector window and adjust the 'subdivisions' on the patch to a reasonable level. Specifically patches that make turns and angles. The default divisions is very high and unneccesary

Using Models
If you create your own models, know that D3 will draw the entire model even if it sees 1 triangle of that model - reguardless of how you use portals (formerly hinting). If you create a large terrain model, it's a good idea to break that model into sections of smaller models according to how the player will see the map. You don't want the game drawing 1,000's of polys that the player clearly can't see.

That's it for now. I'll post more as I learn more.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2005 3:44 pm 
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nice.. im sure this will be useful for q4 mapping as well. You shuld link this in the d3 editing resources thread.


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