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Explore Jam 2
Explore Jam 2 is released. You have five experimental maps from Bloughsburgh, Naitelveni, Newhouse, PuLSaR and Topher.

No monsters, just mind-blowing puzzles, crazy jumping, traps and many more.

Screenshot

Download

Find your way to the exit, explorers!
Holy Shit 
This is fast. Good job guys! 
 
Is quaddicted pack going to have that fix, or did this also include it? (Can't yet, on phone) 
Newhouse 
This is the version with that fix 
Thank You~ 
Can't wait to play other maps, by you guys. 
Yay 
Congrats to all, it was a challenge to create (hopefully) interesting explore maps. 
@Bloughsburgh 
By looking screenshots about your map, visuals will give you extra points* 
Hey Thanks 
Thanks NewHouse, I worked on visuals the last day as I did gameplay first. I still struggled with brushwork and making things look good but I had a good deal of fun creating this place!

Actually, all of the screenshots from the lovely montage picture look fantastic! 
 
Indeed they do. Seems like a good mix of themes. 
 
Wohoo! :) 
 
well..

my map is short. i quickly cutted the second part, so the end will be a bit abrupt, like "this is it?" when you enter the castle.

the jumps may be hard. it's a combination of slope jump, circle jump with a 180 turn. in hard skill they are pretty hard, specially the upper platforms.

i quickly checked my map in the jam and there is an error

i checked the folder and i saw a .prt file
vis completed just fine, but i thought that a .prt file was generated for leaks.

so i resized the sky brushes just in case, and now the teleport trigger in the skill room is below the sky brush.

it's really detrimental if you want to select hard skill

so n00b, lol

i don't like doing patches for things like that.
but... here is a fix, i just have to move the teleport trigger 16 units up in the z axis

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B72Jjyg-RfNFN0FtZkQ0WDNlTnc 
 
When pointfile is created, it is only for fixing leaks? When playing map, you just need bsp and lit, right? 
 
i don't have a clue
i would think that if vis.exe finish with exit status 0 there are no leaks. and that the .prt file is generated by vis.exe to store and process data, and when the vising is finished the file is not needed anymore

and it's not a leak file, the leak file is a.pts

my error, the extensions are similar 
My Lit File 
http://www.mediafire.com/file/na6ckw65mbu5jee/explore_naitelveni.lit


I didnt know i had to include .lit file, so my map doesnt display colored lights that could help in solving the map. 
 
Naitelveni should work on the lighting some more, methinks. It is mostly made of small spot lights scattered semi-randomly across the map - a rather 1996 approach. Everything else seems fine.

Same thing about the RJ6 map, but less obvious. 
Point Lights, Actually 
 
Screenies Look Great 
I can't wait to try these out congrats everyone! 
@dwere 
Sometimes in a jam you don't have time to really tweak the lights. I personally like the 1996 "look" but I assume that's the issue here. 
Going To Be Playing Through This In About An Hour 
Feedback 
Bloughsburgh Excellent. Very interconnected layout with lots of things to do and explore. Managed to get 29/30 pillars, though I cheated at the gold key door puzzle because I just didn't have the patience for that one. This is how you do an explore jam map: no risk of dying unless you're really stupid, shortcuts, large variety of challenges and non-linearity. The best in the pack, and it looks pretty good to boot.

Naitelveni Alright. It looks good but the only thing to do is the lava maze, which is pretty damn annoying because the puzzle is quite obscure. I actually solved it after I went through the maze, through trial and error. It's a shame the surrounding buildings and walls don't have anything to visit.

Newhouse Very good. No real risk of dying and the challenges are all well tuned, with some good teleporter exploration at one point. The style is fantastic and very interesting. Found all the secrets!

Pulsar Really disliked that one, sorry. Far too punishing and too linear, relies too heavily on very precise jumping sequences which don't play well with Quake's floaty physics. That would be fine if there was no risk of dying, but lava and other traps become extremely annoying very quickly. Found one rune but couldn't be arsed to find the rest.

Topher Slope jumping galore! I really liked the moving rocks and the castle. It's a shame you can't explore it more but time constraints and all. First map? Pretty good overall.

Demos: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwnUnvcoU4HFTWtRdHctOFp0bDA/view?usp=sharing 
@Bloughsburgh 
I finished your map, though I only discovered (was lazy) 8 runes, is that going to be secret ending behind that barrier?

This theme feels something I haven't seen much, but definitely fits for Quake. You always give me new ideas how to improve and be creative. Some of the jumping/timing/falling puzzles where quite hard to pull off, especially that one where you have to time when jump, and there is ..5 layers of moving platforms close to each and they always push me off finally when I get higher (maybe it was too fast for me).

But everything else felt interesting to discover and finish. That one part where you have to somehow get on top of that iron elevator, how do you do that? Close to the puzzle, where you have to push floor button to rise up path, you need to use in order to get behind iron bars was challenging (first thought I can't make it, but was able to do it, timing was just right).

There is too much to talk about, I really enjoyed my time. 
 
Naitelveni: can you email me that lit file so I can update the archive or upload it to a different hosting, cuz it doesn't download for me.

Skacky: true, the map is punishing. I wanted it not to feel like a training map, but like a usual map just without monsters. There are actually 3 jumping encounters where you can die, the latest one is really hard. 
 
Bloughsburgh

Got 25 pillars. The elevator one was among the ones I didn't solve - still hoping to figure it out on my own. Great map, looks very good, and has a wide assortment of little challenges - some of them hard, some of them easy.

It was this map that made me think that an Explore Jam should probably feature custom progs that remove falling damage or add an item that removes it. It's both annoying and pointless.

Didn't like the challenge behind the gold door. It seems like the kind of challenge that just makes you stare at the moving things for half an hour, waiting for that one OK opportunity to present itself, but it's so hard to even recognize that you end up savescumming through the gauntlet anyway, cussing in the process. Maybe I just could't figure out a better way.

Naitelveni

Technically a one-puzzle map, but I liked it. Figured the "protection" part out without colored lighting.

The visuals are relied upon a lot, almost like the map was supposed to be bigger, but the author ran out of time. They aren't quite up there with the resident "heavyweights" who used the theme before, but that's mostly because of the lighting.

Some stray fullbrights.

Newhouse

More stray fullbrights.

Two decent obstacle courses, looks decent as well, nice secrets. One obligatory... ahem, no spoilers, I guess. I expected it, but somehow looked everywhere except for the right place at first.

The series of teleporters - or rather the way to the element - felt like random guessing to me, and it's never fun. The way to the exit, on the other hand, is too simple to figure out.

PuLSaR

Really liked this one. Maybe because I'm a graphics whore, or something. Looks really slick. Also, I don't record anything, and savescum in unpleasant situations.

Found all runes, and was really surprised by the reward. As for the buttons - judging by the messages, I'm not even close. I wonder what the prize is. Quad damage? :)

This map made me think about the lighting improvements that were talked about in the Mark V thread. That big sinking building - when you're inside your gun lights up like you're walking over lava, and you can't illuminate the dark corners because the dynamic lighting doesn't work right.

Not the mapper's fault, of course.

topher

Looks interesting, but the lighting is rather simplistic. Slope jumping was fun. A nice little map to finish the jam. 
@dwere 
Thank you~ I indeed run out of time, would have tweaked dream part more, so I have to make it easier to guess than what I was originally writing down on my papers. 
 
@skacky

yeah
first map
first func_train
first colored lighting
first everything
and in the skill selection,, see comment #10
also, i need a message "jump to the upper area to select hard skill", or something like that.

the most i did for modifying games was editing text files

i planned spike shooters and hidden button hunting in the castle, with two floors, and a rooftop. but i strugled with simple things, and trying to do those 30 and 60 walls of the castle.

and i think it was a good idea to make hard skill hard to access. it can be frustating. it's a bit like pro/speedrunner jumping. piece of cake for speedrunners and pro qw players, but hard for us. at least you didn't have much difficulty making the jumps in normal. 
 
Figured the lift out. See you later, elevator!! 
 
@Skacky
Thank you for the demos. Nice to hear some people liked it, wasn't sure will I have enough time to come up with anything.

I kind of continued my previous map, made what I was planning back then.. really would have liked to included puzzle where player is inside moving room and they have to shoot random buttons to move it around and open different maze like hallways. But since this was vanilla quake, I was a bit afraid trying out too logical puzzles.

@dwere
Dream section first had the riddle included, but since it doesn't feel natural to remember text messages.. like "inside the pyramid, how many diagonal jumps you need to make in order to get the otherside?" answer was 4, then remember that you can't always trust blue, so after 4 blue teleports there would have been red fall in order to get the end. But that would have been to risky I guess. 
@Skacky 
You said in demo "you're playing skill 2?" I looked up console and it says skill 1. Practice = easy, Harder = nomal, Pro = hard.

I should have named them differently. 
#27 
It shows skill you have currently set in game.
For example you can record demo in "skill 3", later change skill to 1 and if you run your demo, you'll see "skill 1" in a console. 
 
So it doesn't tell the truth about the demo? 
Feedback 
Skacky:

Thanks for the feedback! I have to yet to watch the demo but excited to do so when I get home. One of my goals was to not have any fatal or even HP punishing traps. Like you said, one can still die from falling/drowning/squishes but those would be freak accidents! Feedback means a lot from you as you are one of my favorite mappers!

NewHouse:

Thanks man, honored to help with the creative juices. I have a wacky mind and now a chance to share it in the form of a 3D world!

Dwere:

Appreciate the feedback and I agree about falling damage. I have a health respawn in two places to combat it but that's about all. Gold Key door challenge is bull caca that's admittance on my part. The best way to go about it is to time when the third plat will not knock you off...this way there is less of an occurrence of the fifth plat to do the same! If trying to just wildly jump up you'll have a harder time. I wanted to go and revamp the challenge a bit but priority of other things got in the way and straight to the deadline.

Ionous:

Watched the stream, was fun and congrats on getting everything with just a very small amount of nudges! ;) Really fun and impressive playing...a true explorer go--I mean deity! 
Dwere 
Thanks for the feedback, I agree with you. I ran out of timem the map was supposed to have 5 puzzles and 3 gold keys. The lighting was a problem and it consomed alot of time for me, i should have made the snow are into a big mesh and then manipulate the hights from that and place acouple of huge lights above.

Did you solve the puzzle? 
 
Yeah, I did. 
On Quaddicted 
Dwere 
there are 10 shootable buttons in my map that you need to find to open the second door, hidden almost in every second room or corridor, most of them are not hard to find if you look for them. 
 
Bloughsburgh: No .lit file? :( Tried MHColour, it makes a very... colorful result. I like it but I guess some would prefer a more subtle .lit. I can't believe how much gameplay you crammed into this on such a short notice! A few puzzles were too hard and I ended up noclipping through them out of frustration, namely the speed demon (not enough time), jump god (likewise) and Achoo's pillar (simply too tough, even with the walkthrough). I think puzzles are best when based on logic and observation rather than pure skill. The jump master challenge also forced me to cheat because it got me stuck on the convex angles of the architecture while the platform continued to move under my feet. Oddly, the underwater illusionary light didn't pulsate in DP (Sept. 22 build, will have to test with other builds) - I still solved this one on my own though, when axing the light didn't actually hit it. All in all, yet another great and very creative map from you, despite a few hiccups. There's only one appropriate answer to a map with such a title and it is: bless you! ;)
PS: "Lizard buttons"? It's not a lizard, it's a kris dagger!

Naitelveni: The puzzle is very easy to figure out (pure logic 101) once you understand that you don't have to physically do something to it but only examine it to solve the maze. The pent on top of the pillar isn't wisely placed: you can grab it before knowing that you're gonna need to rush to the maze with it, thus making the map impossible to complete. It would've been better to hide it inside the puzzle area. This map is a bit of a missed opportunity: instead of building all this nice but otherwise useless architecture, you should have focused on creating the puzzles and only expand the architecture as needed. The lighting (or more precisely, shadows) is not only poor but plain bad. We shouldn't see all these shadows on snow in broad daylight. You should have used sunlight coupled with the -bounce option to light your map. Similarly, we shouldn't see the angles on the snowy mounds which should look much smoother. I haven't used it myself yet but as I understand, phong shading should solve this issue. If you make more snowy maps in the future (or any map with similar shapes), I suggest you examine ad_azad to learn how to do it right. Also, when you use a skybox with a visible sun or moon, you should make sure your lighting actually matches the direction of the sun/moon, which is clearly not the case here.

NewHouse: Great surreal atmosphere, similar to your MJ8 intro. Nice puzzles, though some are too easy to beat - I'm referring specifically to the "can you see the difference" one. The exit is a little too abrupt. I would have liked to actually have to use the keys in order to unlock the exit instead of just having them automagically disable the force field, but I guess you lacked time for it. Does the rune actually do something or is it just a prize in itself for finding all 4 elements?

PuLSaR: Awesome atmosphere! I wish I could say more about it but I'm currently stuck in the crates room (after the 3 vertical piston-like crushers). I can't find a way to jump past the crates and I can't see any button to shoot or press.

Topher: This one is very frustrating! I have no idea how to do the fancy moves required to progress in this map. 
@Mugwump 
Thank you~ I made exit to be that way, I wanted to make there barrier, but since vanilla quake doesn't have interesting effects, you know? Also many other things were red color coded, so it was only logical I used red barrier doors. After finding all elements, you got episode 4 rune.

Didn't have time for making more gameplay, and it would have been too risky suddenly make some puzzles without testing them on every difficulty level. 
 
there are 10 shootable buttons in my map that you need to find to open the second door, hidden almost in every second room or corridor, most of them are not hard to find if you look for them.

Well, I found most of them - only 3 remain. Taking a break for now.

I can't find a way to jump past the crates and I can't see any button to shoot or press.

I got stuck there too. For some reason, it wasn't immediately obvious to me how to jump over the crates, but it's actually pretty easy. 
Demos 
First runs:

http://www.quaketastic.com/files/demos/ej2demos_mjb.zip

Naitelveni:

Really out there and nice touch with snow. I liked most of the map is there to clue you in on the major and really only puzzle of the map. You certainly do explore to eventually reach the exit.

Sunlight would have done wonders as opposed to point lights everywhere...also even a simple brush to hold the floating flames would have looked so much better. The map is terribly lit through and through. The lava puzzle I did not get...but now it is rather obvious. Instead I just randomly ran down paths finding a fatal dead end forcing a reload. I am not keen on traps such as grabbing the Red Armor or the two keys. The note says greed is punished...but why is it not punished for the other keys? I agree with Mug in that the environment is heavily wasted considered the meat of the gameplay is centered on the lava maze. I would have much preferred exploring the gorgeous architecture you created!

NewHouse:

This one wins gold medal for me. Lovely out of this world techo egypt...I mean your style is very original and always a treat to see what you will come up with next. If anything from playing your maps I get a cold, desolate, and techno-fantasy vibe.

I liked the themes you brought on here with time and memory. As others have said some of the challenges are far too easy...but at the same time it is nice to just enjoy an easy solution to things. Then again I only played normal...time to go pro! The color portal puzzle is easy to figure out but getting that last element is not! The main hub room is gorgeous to gander at and I like the inclusion of a super secret...a nice touch. I would have liked if the reward did something like an extra vista or what have you but I understand time constraints. You use colored dark lighting very well!

PuLSaR:

Crazy hot lighting and crazy DARK. Almost too dark for me personally, I had to lower my gamma to see where to go next. This felt like a tough linear exploration map with sprinkles of side objectives throughout the main path. Nothing wrong with that as there is a nice condensed flow to things. I also liked the inclusion of not one...but two super secrets! The buttons are almost impossible to find with the dark levels but I eventually press on!

I enjoyed the rune hunt much more with my favorite being the...fourth rune? The one where I was puzzled for a while in the demo! Like Skacky, I don't like having guaranteed death when failing tricky jumps but it is lava down there after all! Finally, the sinking building is a great visual...I also enjoyed the mirror at the end and it's subtle but practical use of it.

topher:

I liked this map for as simple as it was...just a little trick jump map with an abstract feel. Liked all of floating rocks and nice use of trains throughout. The multiple checkpoint system can't be ignored and is greatly appreciated. Very sad to see it end where it does...would have loved to jump around the castle! Congrats on what I think is your first release!

I hope explore jams become a thing like regular jams and retrojams as there are immense opportunities to really get creative. 
Yowsers 
Had a quick blast - short on time atm. Tried Pulsar's so far - I love the aesthetics of it, but I think it's too hardcore. At one point I had to have noclip, god, and fullbright "1" all on at the same time just to figure out the way forward :} 
Tried To Play This Jam 
and honestly I had fun and frustration in equal measure. I started off with MJB and kind of gave up after 20 minutes or so, played a little of PuLSaR's map and also gave up.

Stream on -
https://www.twitch.tv/fifthelephant/v/113860004

Around 20 minutes mark I play the maps (there's other stuff) but I think this particular theme isn't for me. Some great designs in there though, lots of pretty stuff! 
Beats Q-Zone By A Loooong Shot 
When I get a chance I'm going to try these exploration-interpretations.

Indeed, the more time devoted to Quake mapping the better you get, though it's also impressive how quickly some of these were made overall. Males me wonder how Q-Zone, in all its' glory, became a retail product. :P 
Well, Almost Everything Beats Q!Zone... 
BTW, totally unrelated but I've stumbled upon a DM level for Doom 2 with Quake textures called Q-zone.wad... If anyone's interested, grab it here: http://www.wad-archive.com/wad/Quake-zone
No idea if it's any good. 
Feedback2 
Mug,

Thanks for playing and glad to know someone reads READMEs! Wasn't aware of the lack of slow pulse with DP that's pretty bad as that is the only clue to that pillar. I find that KooHoo textures did not work very well with colored lights or the difference was so marginal that I preferred to stay pure. My test with DP only noted the lack of proper alpha key support on func_illusionaries and some other minor lighting issues but I do make sure to 100% the map with the engine.

In future explore jams, I think I may go a different route.

Haha that makes more sense that they are kris daggers but I can't unsee the orange lizard so it stays. ;)

Fifth,

Watched you play through and although it does appear explore jams are not your style you still managed to get the most difficult pillars! You earned that noclip as you totally made the jumps! You were hoping for an exit and there actually is one down the dark corridor near the 29 pillar barrier! 
 
someone reads READMEs!
I almost always do, and regarding yours you can scratch the "almost" part. They're quite interesting to read beyond the secrets walkthrough. This one lacks the design process, though - I'll make sure to watch it on YT.

lack of slow pulse with DP
No clue why this happened, or rather didn't. Lightstyles usually work fine in DP.

that is the only clue to that pillar
Not really: there's the biosuit. It would be overkill just for the submerged pillar, so I thought "there must be more" and that's what prompted me to axe the lights. 
Seems Like A Good Explore Jam. 
Some cool styles and what looked like decent puzzles etc. I really couldn't be bothered to play more than a couple of minutes tho. 
 
Topher
Pretty cool map, specially because it intuitively made me perform some jump tricks I didn't knew before (the vertical C-jump).

My engine doesn't support fog yet, all platforms were identical, used the same texture on all sides and were uniformly lit. This made the path a bit confusing when quickly jumping and maneuvering.

The floaty platform movement was really well done.

Pulsar
Another impressive explore jam map from you. This one is more ambitious, but also more rough.

The respawning health & ammo at the beginning is a nice touch, specially because the only way to go back to the beginning is from the end. This makes sure that they won't make the map too easy.

Maybe it's because my engine doesn't support colored lights, but it seems there's too many pitch black areas. Also, it seems you thought that that shootable button texture is fullbright, because I've found at least one shootable button in a pitch black spot. I've got all runes, but couldn't find all buttons.

By the way, it was impossible for me to jump to the highest part of the crusher to reach the last rune, so I just noclipped it. Trying to jump from the wall light didn't help. 
"C" Is For (Please Insert Sophomoric Genitalia Reference HERE) 
the vertical C-jump
How do you do that? I tried slope jumping and doing a 180 but it sends me everywhere except where I need to...

but it seems there's too many pitch black areas.
In DP with the .lit, it's not pitch black but it is quite dark. Maybe you should try playing it in a completely dark room? 
@mankrip 
yeah, the quality of my map is low
but i decided to release to gain momentum and motivation to map more

also, i think those are cool jumps. i spent too much time testing the jumps and not texturing and putting lighting. in hard skill the jump in the plataform is pretty hard. it's a "pro" circle jump, with a relatively low margin to succed and precise yaw control. i can do it, but after many attempts.

i always liked that funky quake physics and vector math since i discovered how to access the quad damage secret in e4m1

also like trichording in descent94 
Mugjump 
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B72Jjyg-RfNFX09iVy05VUxmRTA
a demo in hard

you can jump until you make it (in normal) or rage quit in frustation.

you have to perform a "strafe jump" ('w' + 'a' or 'd') and then control the yaw (fancy way to say that you have move the mouse left or right) along the duration of the jump. 
 
Hahaha ... I love what Bloughsburg did with the platforms. Insane! 
#47 
Maybe it was easier for me because I've played it on easy skill, but instead of running forward to climb the ramps, I've turned my back to the ramps, ran backwards over the ramps, and then pressed +forward immediately after jumping. This was way easier than trying to do a 180 turn in mid air. 
Thanks For Your Tips, Guys! 
I'll try again. 
Mankrip 
I've found at least one shootable button in a pitch black spot.

Every button in dark area has a minlight on it or a light source near it.

By the way, it was impossible for me to jump to the highest part of the crusher to reach the last rune, so I just noclipped it. Trying to jump from the wall light didn't help.

It is possible. Other secrets are hard to find, easy to reach type, this one is the opposite type. It's easy to find but you have to find a way to reach it. Use environments around. That crusher has lowered damage and a respawning health near it to allow multiple tries.

Also I think that my default setup is brighter than most of others. Will have this in mind when lighting future maps. I was just blown away when discovered bounce lighting. Made previous two maps with just bounced lighting and no fill lights for contrast dramatic lighting. Though a lot of people found it to be too dark. 
Baker 
Hah thanks man, creating those func_trains made me insane so maybe that's why I decided to punish everyone. <_> 
PuLSaR 
Every button in dark area has a minlight on it or a light source near it.

See this (sorry for the hi-res/low-res texture mishmash):
Screenshot 1
Screenshot 2 
 
Oh yeah, it was that button that made me realize that I'll have to devote a lot of time for the rest.

It sorta kinda has a clue, but I'm not sure it was even intentional. 
Ha Ha! 
One good reason to use DP+SMC: Seven's mod includes a flashlight... 
 
BTW mankrip, I actually CAN see a faint red glow from the star on the button in your first pic... 
Heh 
I found that button (by accident, more or less), and even I wasn't able to see it before I saw the second shot. 
Hm 
I can see that button on my setup, it has minlight 50 (or 70, will check when I get home). and that screenshot looks way more dark than what I see on my system (gamma 0). 
Mugwump 
I actually had to open that screenshot in GIMP and do a "selection by color" to find out what you were talking about. That's the darkest red color in the whole Quake palette (0A0000, index 64).
Screenshot 
Tho 
I'm looking at this screenshot on my work pc. I need to compare it to what I will see on it when I get home 
I Can See It On My Phone Just Fine, 
though I really have to pay extra attention to see it. Maybe you need to adjust your monitor's brightness/contrast? Or you need glasses... ;p 
Mankrip 
I've made an experiment: I made a screenshot (where I can clearly see the button), watched it on my monitor and watched it on my tablet. I couldn't find the button when watcing the screenshot from my tablet, tho I can see the button and the box from my monitor. The other thing is that I can't see the button on your screenshot even on my monitor therefore your engine provides a darker picture than QS or Mark V.

On the other hand I need to calibrate my monitor. 
#64 
Mark V screenshots:
Screenshot 1
Screenshot 2

It has nothing to do with my renderer; the lighting in my renderer is still faithful to the vanilla software renderer. 
 
To be fair, I can see it slightly better on your Mark V screenie. I have a hunch that it may be due to your dithering: in your Super8 screenshot, red dots are mixed with black dots. 
Pulsar's Map Was Rad... 
The button beneath the retracting floor bars was a little tough to spot and there wasn't enough room on the crusher ride up, but the exploration was fun. There is plenty of nice, clean architecture to jump around on.

Loved that building sinking into the lava!

Now, on to the others... 
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