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Techno Drome


I really am torn by this level, split straight down the middle. On one hand, the theme, ambiance, music and lighting are all absolutely fantastic. On the other hand, the texturing, framerate and
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architecture are substantially lacking. I guess the best way to describe this map in one word would be ambitious. Creating a whole cityscape is one thing, creating a [b]brilliant[/b] cityscape is quite a different matter. As I have explained, this map has areas which really do shine, but there are also areas which fall short of the standard set by other areas of it's design. I spawned inside the actual Techno Drome ([b]No relation to the thing from Ninja Mutant Turtles[/b]) and opened the door in front of me. It was a disappointment that it neither had sounds nor a proper holster that it fitted into when it was closed - it just seemed to slide through solid metal. In fact, most of the doors were soundless and slid through solid materials. But I digress. The architecture of the room was very detailed and the environment mapping worked well. However, I felt that the author had failed to capitalise on this by using a decent lighting scheme. It's is far too dark for most of the map, and actually strains your eyes if you don't increase your brightness by at least 150%. The lights that are present look nice, but they simply don't emit as much light as they should. Furthermore, whilst the portal on the floor looks brilliant, it absolutely shafts the framerate, especially when the central door between the two indoor areas is open. Sure, I could turn my settings down and It'd be fine - but compared to a map designed by someone who fully understands how to enginerr the VIS section of the compile, it seems quite meek. Of course, you don't see the majority of the map until you get outside. This is where you really get the scope of the map (And an even lower framerate in places.) and can really have some fun. The biggest problem here was the texture scaling of the windows. Quite often, I could see a window that was smaller than my players head. I guess all the inmates are 'Borrowers'. The repetition of some textures was also a small problem, but Mace has managed to keep that to a mimimum by breaking them up with different buildings. The park section looked great ,(Still waaaay to dark though.) and the sprites, and models used here come together nicely to create a believable atmosphere. But try and avert your eyes from the water in the pond. It's not a pretty sight - evidently some lighting/shader error which really should have been fixed. Keep a lookout for a fuse box which turns off all the lights on the streets, but unless you want to get them to turn back on, id' refrain from doing so. (The mecanism for turning it back on is somewhat buggy and very hard to find.) There's a secret set of invisible steps that carries you to the top of some of the buildings, and some great places to snipe from, where you can see most of the level. I also enjoyed the good use of textures and flares to create the street lights and directional signs. The roads looked good, except for the junctions, where the white lines on the road start glowing. Wierd. On a final note, you will need to teleport between areas which doesn't work particularly well in this level, and there's a fair few drop-out areas where the map just stops. Mace really needs to fill these gaps up with buildings, as it looks rather ugly as is. In conclusion, a map which has plenty of innovation and style is let down slightly by a few small (but very impacting) design flaws. New Textures: Yes New Sounds: Yes Bot Support: Yes ~Szico VII~

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