Scout’s… BSP Format?

A few of you might remember how RMQ introduced a “new” BSP format last year, BSP2. The point of that was to allow for larger and more detailed maps than vanilla Quake does. Unfortunately, we couldn’t go all the way and also introduce things like patch meshes, detail brushes and so forth, mainly because the map format (the pre-compile output of the map editor) wasn’t to be touched. This was in large part down to compatibility with Worldcraft.

That was then. On “Scout’s team”, no one uses Worldcraft…

I’ve been ogling the Quake 3 BSP format for a while now – specifically the variant used by the brilliant game War§ow. That would be FBSP, which is basically q3bsp + light styles. Vanilla Quake 3, you know, doesn’t support flickering lights. This does.

Long story short, Spike got FBSP working in FTEQW, blinking lights and all, while I got my maps converted to Q3 format and set up Radiant for use of Q3 shaders and Q3map2 for compiling. These screenshots show the result.

Have you ever seen a vanilla Quake lightmap? Take it from me, it ain’t pretty. Have you ever thought about what ambient occlusion would look like in Quake? Q3map2 can do it. It also does radiosity, light emitting shaders (sky!), pretty water and a number of other things. Not to mention detail brush support and smooth curves. It also sports some features that can only be described as “porn for designers”, such as the ability to export/import parts of your map to/from Blender and use that for mapping as well.

We didn’t get it to load the textures yet – that’s why you see the checkerboard pattern instead of walls and floor. But man, look at the pretty lights. I’m seriously excited. Even styled and switchable coloured lights work. Also, these screenshots are straight from the engine, without any postprocessing (I usually brighten them a lot), so this is what the lighting looks like in the game.

For those interested, it’s possible to convert Quake maps to Q3 format via old versions of QERadiant. This will leave the entities intact. As for textures, it’s possible to use straight TGA files and utilize shader scripts only where necessary (sky, water etc). As far as the Radiant setup is concerned, I started with the Darkplaces gamepack and modified the config file as well as the default build menu script to create QFusion format (ie FBSP) maps and things like that. Determined people will figure it out.

In other news, Scout’s Journey is, again, to be hosted at the Helping Phriendly Box, the game incubator known as icculus.org, as soon as I can get my shit together my SVN dump transferred.

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5 responses to “Scout’s… BSP Format?

  • Spiney

    Get these textured!

  • Chip

    Offtopic question. How do you configure NetRadiant to work with Darkplaces with q3bsp support, WITHOUT having Quake 3 installed?

    • kneedeepinthedoomed

      I don’t have Quake 3 installed, actually.

      Install the Darkplaces gamepack and modify it to your liking. Configure the engine path as usual, and also set Netradiant up to work with your mod, if any. It will load textures from the textures/ folder, and shaders from the scripts/ folder. Be sure to list all shaders used in a file called shaderlist.txt, also in scripts/. You can see shaders working if a white frame appears around the texture in the texture browser. That’s all, the rest is done by q3map2. Be mindful of the different .map format though.

      Using the Darkplaces gamepack as a base is just for convenience, since it is already set to use Q3 map format and q3map2 for compiling. Once we figure out how to load the textures/shaders, I’ll write a guide.

  • Chip

    OK, got it. I already know about shaderlist.txt. I used to use QuArK, but I can’t use it without having Quake 3 installed. I’ll do the installation tomorrow.

  • kneedeepinthedoomed

    One more thing; I had to rename my misc_model entities because with q3map2, misc_model is for baking models into the actual BSP, pretty much, which won’t work with formats q3map2 doesn’t understand.

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