One Room – Map Labs Test Tube #1

for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

The Source Modding Community Discord server has started running mapping challenges of their own. So far the challenges have all been single player HL2: Episode 2 maps (actually running on an improved SDK 2013 version), so they’re definitely worth keeping an eye on!

This challenge was a “Test Tube” challenge – a 72-hour weekend challenge with the theme of One Room – the entire map should be set in one room. The challenge received a solid 16 entries, and here they are!

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Total Downloads: 5246th January 2019
17 Comments and 2 recommendations, say ""

RTSL in 2019

Let me get straight to the point – I am leaving the site, the Half-Life community and gaming.

I have been running this site since September 2003 and have been heavily involved with the HL community since around 2005.

It’s time for me to move on and do other things. I am disappointed I never “finished” the site, but I really need to change my focus.

I would love to think that I will create some GoldSource maps/mods, but I think it highly unlikely.

I would like to thank everybody who has helped me over the years, and there are a lot of people, too many to mention them all by name.

Don AKA Unq will be taking over the site, BUT it will be more or less in maintenance mode. This means that Don will moderate the comments, add certain/major releases and update some posts, specifically the Villes with missing screenshots.

Don has a message below.

There are still some things to discuss and decide but effectively this is my last post and I will withdraw completely. I won’t check the comments, I won’t be posting new videos on the RTSL YouTube channel or tweeting on the RTSL account, although I may continue tweeting elsewhere.

I wish everybody a bright and creative future.

Goodbye.

A Message from Don

I hope you recognize me from assisting with the RTSL site and events over the last 7 or so years, particularly the Classic of the Month streams. I don’t intend to take over the site and make it my own; I simply want to maintain it as the awesome single player Half-Life site that Phillip built over the last 15 years.

So don’t expect too much to change. As Phillip said, I aim to post major releases and do some fixing up here and there.

There may or may not be more Ville challenges in the future. There definitely won’t be anything like the Hammer/Lambda Cups we’ve had over the last 3 years.

As this transition takes place, I hope you all join me in saying a heartfelt “Thank You” to Phillip for his hard work, vision, and his support of the Half-Life community over the years. And best of luck to him in his future endeavors.

And thank you all for being a part of the RTSL community – you’re why we’re doing this!


31st December 2018 58 Comments

Skill Editor – A Cancelled Project

As the title says, this is a cancelled project. Well, it’s 80% cancelled. There is something that works and will be useful for you, but more on that a little later. Let me explain what I imagined the project would have looked like if it had been finished.


29th December 2018 1 Comment

ReplayVille

for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

Hello and welcome to Challenge 5 in the Lambda Cup, a series of five Source single player mapping challenges. If you are new to the Lambda Cup or mapping challenges, please see the event’s homepage: THE LAMBDA CUP 2018. The theme for this challenge is “replay”. Get ready to play through 9 new maps! Basic… Read More

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Total Downloads: 95929th December 2018
32 Comments and 6 recommendations, most really enjoyed it!

The Lambda Cup 2018 – Challenge 5 – ReplayVille

Hello and welcome to Challenge 5, the final event in the Lambda Cup, a series of five Source single player mapping challenges.

Theme Details

For this challenge, we would like to you create a map that is fun to replay – or that specifically rewards you for playing through again. Variety is the spice of life, so offering the player different experiences during playthroughs is key.

One way to do this is by offering the player choices. Choice of path, or weapons, or companions, and so on.

Randomness can also make significant changes to the experience. Random enemy locations, random timing of attacks, or even random map layout changes that can lead to interesting playthroughs are all fair game.

Ideally the player’s choices or any random elements will impact the playthrough and offer variety on a replay.

Your entry could be a hub-type map where the player must achieve an overarching goal by completing a number of smaller goals. The hub area would lead to various points where the player performs an action that has consequences in the other parts of the map. For example, the player chooses to clear a building of zombies first and then attempts to pass a city street which has a sniper. Because there are no zombies left, the player finds it harder to reach the sniper since they are the only target left. If the player had attacked the sniper first, they would have found a shotgun which would have made it much easier to kill the zombies. But, because the sniper was killed first, they would find a lot more zombies in the building than in the first scenario.

In this case, “hub” doesn’t necessarily mean a map with corridors and portals – the hub area could just as easily be a crossroads in the forest, for example. “Hub” here just means a central area connecting to a variety of areas, where the player can make choices about how to proceed. If there is an overarching goal, it should be clear to the player – and ideally the smaller goals tie in sensibly to the larger goal. (Think of Blast Pit, where the player had to turn on the oxygen, fuel, and the power in order to fire the test engine to proceed past the tentacles. It’s not a good example for replayability, just for how an overarching goal can be linked to smaller goals).

Your entry could also be one where the player has to find the “correct” route in order to complete the map – along the lines of ChaseVille or some of the maps in the recent 72-Second Experiment. But keep in mind that it should be fun to replay – not frustrating and almost certainly not time-limited.

Or perhaps the player learns something during playing your map that allows for a totally different approach on a replay.

For this challenge the usual limit of 2 maps is removed. However, please don’t take that to mean you should build 10 maps.
We have removed this limitation to allow interesting “jumps” to each section, IF the mapper chooses to create a hub-style map.

As always, if you have any questions or doubts, please ask. If you want a private answer, please send an email to RunThinkShootLive@gmail.com – NOT planetphillip@gmail.com. Good luck!

There is one new rule this time [about affecting other maps], so please, please please, read all the rules carefully.

Deadline

The deadline for submission was 11pm GMT Monday 17th December 2018


16th November 2018 20 Comments

PhaseVille

for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

Video games always feature various styles of gameplay. In this challenge we asked mappers to create a map that flowed through 3 phases. See the Theme Details section below for full details.

The resulting maps range from average to fantastic and the different interpretations of each phase is fascinating.

Get ready to play through 15 new maps!

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Total Downloads: 1,82313th October 2018
30 Comments and 8 recommendations, most say "Play It Now!"

The Mesa Cup 2018 – Challenge 3 – The Surface Complex

Who can forget the moment when Eli Vance says that you must reach the surface and get help? Up until then we had just been wandering around and causing trouble (and a resonance cascade). Now we had a real goal – something to get us excited. Reaching the surface proved harder than expected but BOY! was it worth it.

For this final Mesa Cup challenge, we would like you to create a level that features a Black Mesa surface area as the prominent element.

The first two challenges have had maps that were set mostly underground, so now it’s time to get some fresh air. Your entry can be set completely on the surface, or a mixture amongst inside, underground, and surface areas. The main goal can be to reach the surface itself if you like, or the level can take place entirely on the surface.

We would love some foreshadowing as well as a WOW reveal moment, but the details are up to you.

This challenge lasts longer than the previous two; you have 5 full weekends to create and polish your entry. Please get someone to playtest it!

As always, let us know if you have any questions, either here in the comments, in the SMC Discord RTSL Challenge channel or directly to Phillip if you would like a private reply. If you ask the SMC channel, accept only Phillip’s, Don’s, or Crowbar’s answer. Whilst the regular members probably have an idea of what we’d say, it’s not official until one of us says so!

Deadline

The deadline for submission was:

11pm GMT Monday 5th November 2018


5th October 2018 7 Comments

The 72-Second Experiment

for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

For this Experimental Mapping Challenge, entrants had to make a map that lasted just 72 seconds, but they only had 72 hours to make it!

A lot could happen in that time, so don’t think it will be easy.

In addition, you might need to learn the correct route, actions or sequence before you can actually finish it.

There are 12 official entries and 1 bonus entry for you to play.

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Total Downloads: 1,22915th September 2018
19 Comments and 7 recommendations, most say "Play It Later"

Cenodrome: The Lost Sub-Basement of TWHL Tower

for Half-Life

Cenodrome is a small standalone map made in the mold of the TWHL Tower maps. Put together by regulars at The Whole Half-Life site, TWHL Tower was a collaborative mapping project where each mapper constructed a small floor of the tower, and each floor was joined to others by a stairway. Cenodrome is the long lost sub-basement of that tower.

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Total Downloads: 7093rd September 2018
12 Comments and 5 recommendations, most say "Play It Later"