Black Mesa Mod Work in Progress Showoff Thread

Hey guys!

I love modding, I hope I don’t hide that. I’ve always asked people to share with me what they’re working on, be it for Black Mesa or just Half-Life in general. I realized though, there isn’t a thread on the forums for people to centrally share stuff that might not be ‘done’ enough for it’s own thread, or workshop release.

Well, here’s that thread. Share whatever you’re working on. Doesn’t matter if you just started modding and you made a room with some props in it, or you’re a seasoned veteran and are working on a multi-map mod. Lets see it!

Oh, cool, now I can abuse this thread instead of the Show Off thread.

These are pictures from the maps that I’ve been working on for a while. Most of the pictures were taken from December 2015 or this January. I don’t have much time since the start of this semester so not sure when I’ll be able to finish them.

That being said, the first map (yes it’s a multi-map) is finished, so I was thinking maybe releasing this one first and get rest out later.

(Main Lobby)

(Chemical Vapor Deposition Lab)

(PSI Chamber)

(Storage Facility)

(Not So Threatening Intercom)

(Wranglin’ Up The Doctors)

(EAS02 scene)

(Xen Laser Cannon)

(OSI Lab 08)

(Biodome Complex Transit Station)

(Necropsy Observatory)

I love this. Keep up the good work!

There’s a show-off thread? I didn’t see a showoff thread.

Show off your EVERYTHING

Yep yep.
Hopefully this thread will be better for crit and discussion overall.

I might have a use for this thread later. I’m no good at creating Black Mesa-style environments, and the times I’ve tried, I’ve managed to break everything so hard it becomes unfixable (Rest in peace that one really nice looking map that I never got to show off), but I’m always willing to try. I just need inspiration for something that isn’t beyond my skill level.

Ah, yea. I’m intending this to be more directed at mod/mod creations WiPs.

Odd though I couldn’t find that right off. I must be going blind again.

Here’s the first map of a mappack I’m working on. It’s mostly layout complete so I haven’t done a whole lot of detail/lighting passes, but some areas are coming together. I throw in the second shot to show that the layout’s not quite as dead simple as it looks in the overview.

And then the second map of a different project. These are actually all pretty grossly outdated, but most of the core is all there and hasn’t changed.

My oh my, I feel as though I’ve seen that second one before somewhere…


It is clearly a remake of Uplink.

I’d like to make it clear beforehand that, yes, quite a bit of what I’ve done here was inspired by either .RK’s OaR Loop Mod or Text’s OaRU. I started working on this as a way to familiarize myself with single-player mapping in Hammer more than anything else. If it turns out to be somewhat decent (by my ridiculously high self-standards), I might release it. I dunno yet. Anyways!

Like OaR Loop Mod, this area is just up past the Houndeyes in Black Mesa’s stock bm_c2a2a. The changes I’ve made to c2a2a work in pretty much the same way as Loop Mod - the branch near the beginning is set to take the player up by the Houndeyes, there’s a track control room down this way to switch it, etc.

The pipe overpass room itself. Full credit for the pipes and pipe machine to the BM devs, since I just found it hiding in a visgroup in the .vmf It’s not really visible here, but there’s a hallway looking over the room on the wall behind the player. Here’s an older screenshot of it:

Looking into the security office from the windows overlooking the track. They haven’t been having a very good day.

On that note, to avoid making a topic for every single damn question I have, question… do the compile tools for Black Mesa 2015 work correctly with Instances? I’m trying to use instances right now to make some of the more tedious lighting work on the map a bit easier and I’ve tried using instances in the past to avoid the headache of using prefabs or doing a huge amount of manual labour, but for some reason I just can’t seem to get them to work properly.

A screenshot to help explain:

What I’ve tried doing is creating an instance with the 90-degree rail curves and appropriate info_lighting entities, so instead of copy-paste-renaming every single time, I can just drop an instance in, provide a fixup name, and continue on. The thing is - and I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, assuming it’s an issue on my end - the fixup names aren’t working. What you see above is what happened after I turned one of the rails into a dynamic prop and gave it a name, then tried firing an input to it in-game.

There aren’t any entities with the fixup names applied, just the root entity name from the instance itself, and firing an input to it (e.g. SetModelScale, as I’ve done here) applies the results to all the dynamic props in all the different… well, instances, of this instance.

Truthfully, I haven’t tried using instances in either Portal 2 or Left 4 Dead 2’s versions of Hammer, so I don’t know if I’m just screwing something up here, but as far as I can tell (from both what the VDC says and from the instance entities that are available in BM Hammer) my setup should work fine.

Good work! Keep it up, man!

Oooh, it’s definitely coming along quite well so far! It seems a bit open and airy, like there’s a crap load of vertical space, but nothing filling it. Not sure if anyone else is getting the same vibe.

Thanks for the positive comments, but you haven’t seen the completely original (i.e. not built off of BM) maps yet. :wink: :stuck_out_tongue:

(Self-deprecating humour aside, the first map here is definitely the most polished if only for the fact that I’m adding to it instead of creating something from scratch. It’s the other levels - save the BM stock maps, which are now bm_c2a2c and bm_c2a2f - that I’m uncertain about more than anything else.)

As for vertical space - Yeah, something I’ve always had trouble with in Hammer is getting the scales right. Just about everything I work on has a point where it’s either too large or too claustrophobic. A good example (though I don’t have any good screenshots of it, partially because it’s still in the blockout phase) is the room with the second track, sentries, and bullsquids just after the rocket silo (in HL1’s c2a2d map) - my first attempt at that room had a huge amount of unused horizontal space. I’ve since slimmed it down so it’s not as ridiculously empty (part of the problem was the rails, I had a 90 degree curve instead of the parallel track that the original had), but either way… Scale.

A more up-to-date (aka taken just now) shot of the room, from the other side so the upper floor hallway place is visible:


There used to be a sleeping houndeye up there, as opposed to a dead one, then I realized that having a hostile NPC up there that can’t interact with the player in any meaningful fashion was kinda pointless.[/spoiler]

Anyways, for what it’s worth, a handful of c2a2b shots. This is where things start going downhill.

The HECU vs. Vort showdown just after the elevator. The elevator has HECU grunts on it now instead of sentries, but I might restore the sentries - there are some annoying physics bugs with ragdolls and the elevator there. Also, I’m not sure about the bluish-grey lighting on either sides of the central track area here… Something to look at.

Instead of having the Vort side of the room lead upstairs to where the HECU elevator is, there’s a simple storage room here instead, mainly because I have no idea how to actually add the catwalks above the elevator room without making the geometry very messy. Considering how inexperienced I am with Hammer in general and how I’ve still got a lot to learn about optimization in general… Yeah, that’s a can of worms I’m not ready to open yet. :wink:

The Vort vs. HECU showdown towards the end of the map, after passing through the locked doors in the central track room (no screenshots of the upstairs office because it’s looking reaaally barren right now and I’m not too pleased with it). The crates and such on the Vort side were an attempt on my part to fix the Vorts ignoring the ai_battle_line I have set up for them. Spoiler: It didn’t work. On that note, actually, is there somewhere on the forums where I can ask questions about things I’m having trouble with, without it becoming annoying? I’m having a slew of problems all over the place with this project - some of which are oversights because I’m still new to this, some are just carelessness on my part (e.g. messy geometry), and there are some that I’m just completely, utterly mystified by. Off the top of my head, the two major ones right now are the ai_battle_lines (as mentioned, I’m having issues with the NPC’s ignoring them, especially Vortigaunts, which is odd because I know they’re used with Vorts in at least one of Black Mesa’s maps and I can’t see anything inherently wrong with my setup) and a huge number of bizarre things ranging from minor (ragdolls acting funky, particle systems turning off) to major (game crashes!) that start up when the player saves and loads.

There’s more to the map than just this, but I don’t want to flood the topic with my screenshots alone, y’know? :stuck_out_tongue: [/spoiler]

DISCLAIMER : Everything in this photo is in extreme alpha, built just few hours ago.

I plan to get the first map out as soon as possible (the screenshots I’m about to show you are from the second/third map, however).

So, for this weekend I extended the transit station. It still is heavily unfinished, however. Total spent time: (including areas that are not shown in the pic below) about 5 hours.

I been creating numerous custom textures since March and now it’s their time to shine.

This is the hallway supposed to connect from the transfer platform 1-2 and 3-4.

The two LCD monitors there shouldn’t share same textures, but I forgot to fix that. I plan to fix up the edges of the LCD screens and the “Transfer To” sign later too. Speaking of that, I also plan to completely re-do the sign (it look pretty dull right now), but not sure where to start really.

I’m still working on the transit map texture. I tried several options but most of them didn’t really work well.

And… yeah. I’m not sure what is going on with the lighting. It shouldn’t be this bright. You’ll be surprised to know that the light entity here use exactly same property from the light entity from the 2nd screenshot. But for some reason it’s very bright here. I’ll tone it down a bit.

Almost everything in this picture was influenced a lot by real life train stations (including the textures).

This is the area that was glimpsed at the end of Questionable Ethics chapter (If you haven’t figured it out, my custom maps take place at the same lab from Questionable Ethics). The ceiling, I think I did a pretty good job. I took inspiration from the Blast Pit chapter for the ceiling. I know this section of the lab is supposed to have modern construction, but the tunnel/hallway leading up to this room seem very old. So I’m gonna take a guess that this area was built for something else initially, then later was reconfigured to house the transit station.

Since this area was not scaled well, I actually did not copy/paste from the official map. Instead I only took references from the VMF files, and recreated the part on my own with correct scale. So even though this area is seen in the original Black Mesa, what you see here was created from scratch.

And yes, I know the digital clock and the clock in the monitor doesn’t match up. It’s because the digital clock texture is the one from way back in December 2015 (before the creation of the transit station). I didn’t really had time to re-make the clock texture yet, so I just left it there. I actually feel like to remove the digital clock and add something else instead.

Everything beyond this point doesn’t even have any entities in it. I finished the brush works only.

I also reworked the actual platform (station) part too, since it was a blatant copy/paste from the station in the Inbound chapter, but decided not to make it public just yet.

And during my final hours I slacked off and made this.[/size]

You got custom textures working? Please-oh-please explain how!

Eh? You just put them in the mats directory or in a VPK and mount the folder it’s in.

Founded in 2004, became one of the first online communities dedicated to Valve’s Source engine development. It is more famously known for the formation of Black Mesa: Source under the 'Leakfree Modification Team' handle in September 2004.