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Author Topic: Smooth spiral ramps  (Read 6106 times)

Offline Hvcci

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Smooth spiral ramps
« on: November 15, 2014, 01:42:22 PM »
Smooth spiral ramps

I always wanted to create smooth spiral ramps that could be surfed in both directions. So I messed around in Hammer and came up with this idea. This method is quite costly on the %s (at least 3 times more than normal curved ramps) and it doesn't have overlapping segments. I highly recommend using Propper to convert it into a model (http://forums.solidsurf.info/index.php/topic,3865.0.html), otherwise the ramp will be a sticky-fest. I know that blender has a screw modifier that could make spiral stuff, but since I'm too inexperienced with blender I'm using Propper. To align my segments I use the vertex alignment method.

Step 1:

Create your first ramp segment. I suggest using a 5:4 ratio but you can use whatever ratio you like. Make sure that your segment is textured with nodraw.



Step 2:

Now we have to do some clipping. First clip your segment in the sideview from the upper-right corner to the bottom-left corner and keep both parts.



Do the same in the topview. You now should have three parts. You can check yourself by dragging the parts apart from each other.



If you've done everything right, put them back together and group them. You can now start textureing the visible parts of your segment.

Step 3:

Next we create the downward gradient/slope of our ramp. Select the vertex manipulation tool and select all the vertecies on the left of your segment in the sideview. Drag the selected vertecies down by the amount you want. In this example I used 32 units.
This makes my downward slope ~26.5.



Step 4:

Now we are ready to copy the segment. Select your segment, shift-drag it beside and rotate it by hitting ctrl-m on the z-axis. Since we've clipped our segment from the upper-right corner to the bottom-left corner, the value has to be positive. Otherwise the surf will be quite bumpy. I'm using 3. Select the rotated piece and align the it to the first segment using the vertex-tool and selecting all the vertecies.
Make sure to align it both in top-view and in side- or front-view.



Step 5:

Now comes the important part. Select both segments and rotate them by the following formula: -(total rotation of the last segment(s) - half of the rotation of a single segment). In my example this would be: -(3-1.5) = -1.5. This might get clearer in the following steps but lets go on.
Now that we've rotated our two segments, we have to align the middle vertex in the top-view to the grid.



Next drag the overlapping vertecies to the gridpoint straight below the one we've just aligned.



Do this for both sides. Once you're done, you can re-rotate both segments back by the amount we've calculated (1,5) and select all segments and align them to the grid so we can go on with the next step.

Step 6:

Now copy both segments by selecting them and shift-dragging them beside and rotate them by hitting ctrl-m on the z-axis. Since I've used 3 on the first rotation, I have to double that amount now to 6. Once again align the two new copies to the first two. Also make sure to align them in both viewports. Select everything and rotate it using the formula again. In my example this would be: -(6 - 1.5) = -4.5
Select everything and and align the upper middle vertex to the grid in the top-view. Now drag the vertecies of the overlapping parts on the gridpoint below the one you've aligned.



Select everything again and re-rotate everything back (4,5).

Step 7:

Repeat this process until you got a ramp you are happy with. You might notice that 3 rotation on a single ramp segment will create relatively high %s on a 360 ramp. As I said before: I highly recommend using Propper to convert this ramp into a model.



Note: If you would like to have a 64unit base under your ramp, you can add one and clip it the same way the ramp was clipped. one time in the top-view and one time in the side-view. Just make sure that no single clipped face has more than 3 edges or vertecies. Otherwise the Vertex-tool will create strange errors. But since this method has no overlapping parts this base would only be an aesthetic part.

Another screenshot of a 180 version in-game:




This is my first tutorial on SolidSurf and I hope that some of you will find this usefull. Since English isn't my native language my grammar might be wrong in some places. I hope you guys go easy on me for that. I also would appreciate any kinds of criticism or tips to make this tutorial better (even grammar improvements \).

Offline Arblarg

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2014, 06:02:44 PM »
Huge emphasis on making it a proper propper model. Might want to bold that part. Not making that a model is already like half your water indicies from the looks of it.

Offline RazerSurf

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2014, 07:09:21 PM »
Huge emphasis on making it a proper propper model. Might want to bold that part. Not making that a model is already like half your water indicies from the looks of it.

Isn't waterindices overlapping brushes? These aren't overlapping so shouldn't be too bad. However on faces / brushes / vertexes..

Offline NamedPlayer

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2014, 03:06:57 PM »
This is a very innovative way of making spirals and it looks much neater and quicker than the older method. (looks that way at least) I'll have to try it out later. I'm quite suprised it uses up more %s however since it doesn't overlap but i guess it's because it uses twice as many blocks.

Offline fr3shz

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2015, 10:59:20 PM »
Hey,

so I tried making one of these and it turned out pretty well. Only problem is the collision model.
It's getting kinda weird after making the ramp into a model and I can't seem to figure out why.
Does anyone have a solution for this? Cheers.


Offline Hvcci

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2015, 07:22:42 AM »
You could either set the model itself to be its collisionmodel, or you could make a copy of your ramp, texture it with tools/playerclip, make that whole thing a func_brush and name it "yourrampnamehere_phys" and set this one to be the "Physics Mesh" for your propper_model. Also make sure that both the origin of your propper_model and your func_brush are on the exact same coordinates. I always keep mine at 0 0 0.
EDIT: Also "Concave collisions" must be set to yes. Otherwise your collision model will be shrink-wrapped and won't be surfable.

I like the look of your ramp and I'm happy this tutorial helped you. Your texture looks nice, but i seems like it won't line up properly... I might write a tutorial on how to fix that as well \
« Last Edit: January 15, 2015, 07:54:31 AM by Hvcci »

Offline fr3shz

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2015, 03:47:54 PM »
I did it with the playerclip copy and all the other settings. I successfully turned brushwork into models before, it's just on this one
the collisionmodel keeps connecting the start of the ramp with the end and I dunno why. Other than that, I'm loving the tutorial.  \

Offline Hvcci

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2015, 04:48:06 PM »
Hmm strange... could you post a screenshot of your propper_model properties and/or the compile log?

Offline fr3shz

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2015, 06:06:35 PM »
Sure thing. I obviously matched the origins after taking the screenshots ;>



Code: [Select]
** Executing...
** Command: C:\Games\Steam\SteamApps\common\SourceSDK\bin\source2007\bin\propper.exe
** Parameters: -game "C:\Games\Steam\steamapps\SourceMods\propperconfiguration" "c:\games\steam\steamapps\common\counter-strike global offensive\sdk_content\maps\up_right_spin"

Propper 0.31 by Carl Foust. Adapted from vbsp.exe by Valve Software. (Aug 19 2012)
8 threads
materialPath: C:\Games\Steam\steamapps\SourceMods\propperconfiguration\materials
Loading c:\games\steam\steamapps\common\counter-strike global offensive\sdk_content\maps\up_right_spin.vmf
===============================
Creating model: "props/up_right_spin"
===============================
Building mesh...
What?
Material: de_season/metalflat - LightmappedGeneric converted to vertexlitgeneric.
What?
Material: de_season/gridwall_noreflect - LightmappedGeneric converted to vertexlitgeneric.
What?
Material: tools/toolsnodraw - Material deemed invisible. No conversion needed.
Writing c:\propsource\props/up_right_spin_ref.smd
386 triangles written.
------------------------
Building physics mesh...
Collision model created with 192 pieces.
That is a "costly collision model". Try using fewer brushes for collision to make the model more efficient.
Writing c:\propsource\props/up_right_spin_phys.smd
804 triangles written.
------------------------
Writing c:\propsource\props/up_right_spin.qc
Done.
Compiling the model:
studiomdl.exe -game "C:\Games\Steam\steamapps\SourceMods\propperconfiguration\" "c:\propsource\props/up_right_spin.qc"
---Please Wait---
Studiomdl complete!
1 second elapsed

Offline Hvcci

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2015, 07:32:36 PM »
I'm sorry but i can't find whats wrong. The compile log is completely fine and the properties too. Only thing that I do different, is to give it a surface property and set the welding threshold to 1, but this can't be it. I've never used propper with csgo, but since you've already created stuff with propper, this can't be the problem neither... \

Offline Panzerhandschuh

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2015, 04:07:50 PM »
Have you tried setting the origin to 0 0 0 on both the model and the collisions?

Offline fr3shz

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2015, 04:33:54 PM »
Ok this may just be a result of csgo being weird when it comes to vertex manipulation. I'm gonna try to remake
the ramp in source sdk and let you know how it turned out.

Edit:

Alright, it turned out perfect when I did it in source sdk. So it's really about the vertex manipulation since other brushes I turned into models
with csgo sdk haven't had any collision issues. As for the origins, does it really matter as long as they're on the same spot?

« Last Edit: January 16, 2015, 06:17:55 PM by fr3shz »

Offline Hvcci

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2015, 06:27:30 PM »
I don't think its that much of a difference, for me it's a personal preference. It's kind of a bug-preventation: I drag one reference vertex of my mesh to 0 0 0, do the same with the collision-model and hit 0 three times in the properties under origin. Simple as that. I'm glad it worked out for you \ I'm quite curious: are you working on a bigger project?

Offline fr3shz

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Re: Smooth spiral ramps
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2015, 06:44:18 PM »
Umm, I guess so. At least for me it's "big" as it's going to be my first map. Not sure how it's gonna turn out tho
but you can check out some of the early screenshots I put up here http://surf.fotg.net/index.php/Thread/250-My-map-project/