Hello guys, Shabs right here, Recreation 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 recent 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 person interface. Given the scope of the modifications, it was troublesome to anticipate the entire rising pains, however we’re glad 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 submit we did on Dusk right here on the PS weblog, and in addition over on our FCE weblog. You probably have extra questions, be happy to remark right here and we’ll learn them!
There’s by no means been a greater time to attempt Firewall Zero Hour, which is why it’s additionally the proper time for an additional Free Weekend Trial*, coming June 28-30 for energetic PS Plus members. Have a pal with PS VR who’s by no means tried the sport? Properly, now they’ll hop on with you, and you’ll present them the ropes! For all of the veterans, we’re additionally stacking a Double XP Weekend on high 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 submit, we needed 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 growth of Firewall Zero Hour, we realized that one of the vital necessary issues about VR is the participant’s sense of scale — placing the participant in a really small or very giant house, permits gamers to get artistic with their motion. We’d solely touched upon extra-large maps in the primary sport (maps like Docks, Warehouse, and District), so we needed to attempt pushing it so far as we may 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 an excellent bigger constructing, on an expansive airfield, and within the daytime so you may see all the pieces — 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 needed this map to mix components which have labored properly in different maps: large, open areas, giant indoor areas with a number of cowl and completely different top ranges, and tighter rooms and corridors that lend themselves properly to intense, up-close firefights. Throughout the Hangar map, there are many nooks and crannies for enemies to cover in. We needed 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 completely different methods on the prevailing maps, and a whole lot of them are based mostly on utilizing the surroundings 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 operating into enemies mendacity in wait earlier than you get there. Don’t overlook to search for! You’ll need to 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 elements of the Hangar map is the Air Visitors Management Room. Positive, we’ve bought a big airplane in an excellent 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 house as plausible as doable. We are going to at all times hold attempting to provide you with new methods to carry our maps to life.
Deep Dive — Anatomy of a Map, from Idea to Ultimate: Hangar Blockouts
Exterior of Hangar
Blockouts are the primary section of the map creation course of. On this first picture beneath, now we have 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 crew to “discover the enjoyable” earlier than committing to the ultimate look and structure of the extent. Props and whole buildings are represented of their easiest varieties throughout this section, typically instances 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,” similar to concrete, corrugated metals, and so forth. Apparently, throughout this section, many close to ultimate property will coexist with lingering blockout property from the earlier section till the artwork crew systematically replaces each asset.
Beneath is the ultimate model of the scene. Massive distinction! All blockout property have been changed with ultimate property, and extra property have been added as properly 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 package deal collectively.
Inside of Hangar
That is the blockout of the Hangar inside, beneath. Discover how the airplane — one of the vital complicated property we’ve ever made — continues 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 components. “WIP” (work in progress) variations of complicated property such because the scaffolding and airplane are additionally added, to be completed in a later section. A really tough lighting move can be added to assist get throughout the texture of a giant Hangar, even at this early stage. Scale is extraordinarily necessary in VR, and the ceiling lights actually assist obtain the texture of such immense constructions.
Beneath is the ultimate model of the scene. All blockout property have been changed with ultimate property, WIP property have been up to date with ultimate property, and extra property have been added as properly to make the scene really feel extra plausible and lived in. The lighting move is far more dramatic, creating daring pockets of sunshine and shadow within the participant’s house, whereas additionally permitting the participant to understand the enormous construction of the constructing. Numerous sound design went into this room as properly—gunshots and footsteps in giant rooms manufactured from hole metallic and concrete, for instance, sound very completely different than in outdoors areas or small workplaces.
We’re so excited to see the group’s response to the Hangar map, and to Operation: Dusk on the whole. See you on-line, Contractors!
*PS Plus required for Weekend Trial