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hardcore_gamer

Do you really need that many textures for a level?

How many textures does a single level really need?   

33 members have voted

  1. 1. ?

    • Lots, otherwise it will look dull
      2
    • Just some, nobody will care as long as it's not literally the same wall over and over
      24
    • Very few. Layouting/level design matters the most anyway
      7


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This might just be me but whenever I make a map for any game I typically use only a tiny portion of the total number of textures that that can be used. I just don't see any reason to use a dozen different wall textures, a dozen different floor or ceiling textures, a dozen different etc. It just seems pointless to me. I also can't help but laugh at how modern triple A games brag about how many art assets are in their games and yet they look bland and generic anyway because everything is just grey or brown.

 

How many textures do you think are actually needed for a level to look good?

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It varies.The bigger the map the more textures should and will be used but some also like to keep it simple :)

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I generally like sticking to one or two texture themes for the sake of consistency. And if I do use a texture pack, i.e. cc4, I certainly won't be combining it with any other packs. Lately, I've been enjoying mapping with just stock textures. There is a lot of really cool stuff you can still do with basic Doom 2 resources, as seen in wads like Going Down or Hellbound.

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From experience I'd say that for a small\medium-sized classic style map you need around 12 textures and 8 flats. The rest can be slightly different variations, key marks, switches, teleports, lifts, and all that technical stuff. With a smaller selection you will probably have to sacrifice some potentially neat ideas. Flats tend to be more versatile so the number is lower for them.

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Hmm... where's the option for "just some, I won't care as long as it's not the same wall over and over"? Because I'm sure somebody would care.

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Very few. You could just use brownhug and fireblu as textures for all I care. As long as the map plays good. 

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Posted (edited)

Most times, just some.
Currently I'm making a cave map which have visual style of Spirit World. I've added only necessary extra textures - new door, a fence, spooky big face texture which can be good on scrolling walls, also 256-wide rock texture (useful on huge cave areas)

If I've chosen different theme, probably I will need to add many new textures.

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This is not something I think about. If I'm making a computer room, I don't think "I can't have any computers in here because I've gone past my allotted texture use limit". The design and purpose of each room, corridor or sector is what dictates what texture will get used. That and nothing else.

 

For other people who want to practice their art skills they might choose those textures so they get used. Not all artwork is done with a specific purpose in mind. Sometimes artwork is done just for the fun of it. But, since I don't yet do my own artwork I don't feel the need to try every texture. It just comes down to what is required to get the effect you want (or as close to it).

 

So, if this poll had a 4th option, I would have voted for it:

  • 4: It's not about the textures. It's about the design.

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After finishing Icarus (since many levels used few textures) I've come to realize that (obviously) the most important aspect of the map is the layout and how it plays out. More textures and contrast might help in setting up the atmosphere and mood for sure, but at the end of the day if it looks good but plays like trash it's pointless.

 

So for me it's going to be option 3 (would've picked the second option but the phrasing killed it).

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I think it's a good thing to consider. Setting yourself a simple limit is a good way to enforce some coherence in texturing. Especially beginners would benefit from it a lot as they tend to go wild with colors.

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i don't always find virtue in a spartan approach to texturing. even the most functional building exteriors in real life have cladding, drainage and layers of material... almost anything manmade is going to be decorated to a certain extent, from an ancient castle (there are a LOT of doom castle maps which use a single texture but they can be plain and rely an awful lot on shadowing, whereas an inhabited castle would have pennons and tapestry plus incredible amounts of variation in its rock make-up, not to mention a thriving community inside its walls that couldn't possibly be made out of the same darkened Hexen texture) to the corridors of a submarine... even brutalist concrete silos and blocks of flats are gonna be grafitti'd and delapidated, show the signs of stubborn human decoration. imo the more texture busyness happening in a level the more alive it feels, especially if the textures clash because inhabitants clash with designers every day there is.

 

i guess abstract environments like ribbiks's whaley maps can get away with a cut down presentation when the shapes and lighting are vivid enough to take over but hardly anyone maps like that

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50 Shades of Graytall is proof that you don't need a lot of textures.

 

Or perhaps it's proof that you do need them.

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