Hello guys, Shabs right here, Sport Director on Firewall Zero Hour*, the team-based tactical multiplayer shooter, unique to PS VR.
It’s solely been just a few weeks since we launched Operation: Dusk, which kicked off a bunch of latest content material and enhancements deliberate for the sport. There’s loads we launched with Dusk — the Op-Cross, Hack Keys, Missions, Duties, Rewards — all whereas fully revamping the consumer interface. Given the scope of the adjustments, it was tough to anticipate all the rising pains, however we’re comfortable to report that as of Patch 1.26, squad and matchmaking points ought to now be addressed. It has been a course of, this buildout of a dependable and sturdy platform — one that may set us up for future progress, enhancements, and content material rollouts. We hope the place we take the sport from right here exceeds your expectations and rewards your continued dedication. As at all times, there’s extra data within the final put up we did on Dusk right here on the PS weblog, and in addition over on our FCE weblog. In case you have extra questions, be happy to remark right here and we’ll learn them!
There’s by no means been a greater time to strive Firewall Zero Hour, which is why it’s additionally the proper time for an additional Free Weekend Trial*, coming June 28-30 for lively PS Plus members. Have a good friend with PS VR who’s by no means tried the sport? Effectively, now they will hop on with you, and you may present them the ropes! For all of the veterans, we’re additionally stacking a Double XP Weekend on prime of the trial. That’s proper: this weekend, all Firewall Zero Hour gamers will earn Double XP throughout the identical weekend of the Free Trial (June 28-30). We hope to see you on-line!
On this put up, we wished to do a deep-dive into the making of one in all our favourite maps — Hangar — which is the primary of two new free maps launched in Operation: Dusk, and the eleventh map to launch in Firewall Zero Hour!
Planning a Multiplayer Map for VR: Hangar
In early improvement of Firewall Zero Hour, we realized that one of the crucial vital issues about VR is the participant’s sense of scale — placing the participant in a really small or very giant area, permits gamers to get artistic with their motion. We’d solely touched upon extra-large maps in the principle recreation (maps like Docks, Warehouse, and District), so we wished to strive pushing it so far as we might within the Hangar map.
In Hangar, the motion takes place round a big navy transport plane in a hangar within the coronary heart of Malaysia. The big cargo aircraft — large enough to move a tank, inside a fair bigger constructing, on an expansive airfield, and within the daytime so you’ll be able to see every part — is a primary for our studio. We even gave the gamers just a few raised vantage factors, just like the skybridge space, to allow them to actually take within the scope of the map.
We wished this map to mix parts which have labored nicely in different maps: large, open areas, giant indoor areas with a lot of cowl and totally different top ranges, and tighter rooms and corridors that lend themselves nicely to intense, up-close firefights. Throughout the Hangar map, there are many nooks and crannies for enemies to cover in. We wished each a part of the map to have ample cowl choices. We’ve seen a lot creativity from the Firewall Zero Hour group when it comes to creating new and totally different methods on the prevailing maps, and a number of them are primarily based on utilizing the setting to your benefit.
Be cautious when looking for the Laptop computer, although; all these nooks and crannies can imply a tougher search, and extra danger of working into enemies mendacity in wait earlier than you get there. Don’t overlook to lookup! You’ll must be careful for enemies perched on balconies, walkways, and the skybridge. We predict having to be conscious of above and beneath provides a wealth of unpredictability and enjoyable to each match, and it’s one thing we did our greatest to amp up in Hangar.
Certainly one of our favourite components of the Hangar map is the Air Visitors Management Room. Positive, we’ve obtained a big airplane in a fair greater constructing, on a big airstrip–however we simply love all of the motion and particulars on the screens. Numerous analysis went into making this area as plausible as doable. We are going to at all times preserve making an attempt to give you new methods to deliver our maps to life.
Deep Dive — Anatomy of a Map, from Idea to Closing: Hangar Blockouts
Exterior of Hangar
Blockouts are the primary section of the map creation course of. On this first picture beneath, we’ve the blockout model of the outside of the Hangar map. Throughout this section, a barebones however absolutely playable model of the map is made. It’s rudimentary look permits for fast iteration, empowering the group to “discover the enjoyable” earlier than committing to the ultimate look and structure of the extent. Props and full buildings are represented of their easiest varieties throughout this section, typically occasions simply easy blocks–therefore the time period “blockout.”
After the structure of the map is finalized, the primary Artwork section begins, beneath. Throughout this section, the artists start creating the 3D geometry for the buildings and grounds, and in addition their corresponding “supplies,” corresponding to concrete, corrugated metals, and so forth. Curiously, throughout this section, many close to closing property will coexist with lingering blockout property from the earlier section till the artwork group systematically replaces each asset.
Beneath is the ultimate model of the scene. Large distinction! All blockout property have been changed with closing property, and extra property have been added as nicely to make the scene really feel extra plausible and lived-in. The periphery, sky, and lighting have all been up to date to realize the specified time of day, which modified to one thing extra dramatic in comparison with the unique blockout model. Distinctive sounds and music have additionally been added at this stage, tying the entire bundle collectively.
Inside of Hangar
That is the blockout of the Hangar inside, beneath. Discover how the airplane — one of the crucial advanced property we’ve ever made — remains to be represented as a easy form — on this case, a tube.
As with the outside — as soon as the structure of the map is finalized, the primary Artwork section for the inside additionally begins, seen beneath. Throughout this section, the artists start creating the 3D geometry for the structural parts. “WIP” (work in progress) variations of advanced property such because the scaffolding and airplane are additionally added, to be completed in a later section. A really tough lighting go can be added to assist get throughout the texture of a giant Hangar, even at this early stage. Scale is extraordinarily vital in VR, and the ceiling lights actually assist obtain the texture of such immense buildings.
Beneath is the ultimate model of the scene. All blockout property have been changed with closing property, WIP property have been up to date with closing property, and extra property have been added as nicely to make the scene really feel extra plausible and lived in. The lighting go is way more dramatic, creating daring pockets of sunshine and shadow within the participant’s area, whereas additionally permitting the participant to understand the large construction of the constructing. Numerous sound design went into this room as nicely—gunshots and footsteps in giant rooms fabricated from hole metallic and concrete, for instance, sound very totally different than in exterior areas or small places of work.
We’re so excited to see the group’s response to the Hangar map, and to Operation: Dusk normally. See you on-line, Contractors!
*PS Plus required for Weekend Trial