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Memfis

What's up with all these thin, barely supported 3D floors?

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Who are the architects responsible for this madness? Would you dare to step on platforms like this in real life? Where are they even coming from? Is this the default 3D floor setting in Doom Builder or something? Shouldn't suspended platforms be thicker and have more supporting structures? They just look so unsafe.

 

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4 minutes ago, Memfis said:

Who are the architects responsible for this madness?

Wizards, obviously. They use magic to suspend these floors so they don't collapse the moment someone steps on them.

 

To discuss actual map architecture, I feel it's strange to have floors suspended without thick supports every 192 units, so I always give them huge columns to hold them up every so often.

Unless the floors are in Hell, then anything goes.

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Posted (edited)

But our sense of aesthetics in architecture is very much based on practicality. These thin unsupported platforms simply aren't appealing. You look at them and imagine how they break under a single mancubus' weight. If the whole level has a surreal look it makes sense to come up with structures that defy physics, but when most of the map tries to look believable these unstable 3D floors seriously damage the atmosphere. I think maybe people feel that 3D floors are just not comfortable enough to work with to worry about things like this? I never tried using them so I'm not sure what the process is like.

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Honestly I think most people just don't realize, I know I've never noticed. Now that you bring it up though this phenomenon is pretty similar to the more noticeable vanilla equivalents. Crushers from the sky, infinitely thin skylights, doors that retract into the sky, etc. Now that I think about it making things intersect bizarrely with the sky is the only way you can really fuck up like this. I guess not having true 3d almost acts as a safety net grounding the architecture in some level of structural stability.

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When Oblige supported 3D floors, I seem to remember them always being unnaturally thin.

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They were often 16 units high.

Example:

wiNofr4.png

I don't think they were unnaturally thin, but they were a little too long much of the time, as can be seen in this image, because this, to me, doesn't look like it should hold.

An easy way to test this, though, would be to get Oblige 6.20 and generate some maps with 3D floors in it and see the results.

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1 hour ago, Plusw said:

Honestly I think most people just don't realize, I know I've never noticed. Now that you bring it up though this phenomenon is pretty similar to the more noticeable vanilla equivalents. Crushers from the sky, infinitely thin skylights, doors that retract into the sky, etc.

Yet people complain all the time about poorly made such-and-such level is because "there goes another door into the sky" and so on.

 

No one seems to complain about the bodies and body parts suspended on chains from thin air in the wads, though. Or maybe they do and I just never noticed.

 

The bottom line is, perhaps it's only a matter of time before thin, unsupported 3D floors that look unstable become as complained about as the sky vanilla equivalents. Vanilla has been around for nearly 25 years. 3D floors have been around a much shorter time. Give the crowds time to sharpen their pitchforks and gather up their torches, but they'll probably eventually come.

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3d floors are made using a control sector who's floor and ceiling heights determine the 3d ceiling/floor, so no, there is no default height for them; that's just a common aesthetic people use.

 

Also, as stated by others here: don't try to make Doom make sense. Doom's general design lends itself best to abstract environments rather than realistic ones, both for gameplay reasons and aesthetics.

 

That all said, I would agree with the notion that 16x tall 3d floors are a bit over-common and could use some extra detailing to not make them look like standard "platforms."

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At least in my shot, those thin floors are held up by the brown pillars.

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In the first (Quakeish) shot, I have no problem believing that the floors could hold if they were adequately supported.  They appear to be made of, or at least reinforced with, metal and they look to be about 8 or 16 units thick.  Doomguy as an adult male human is 56 units all, so those floors have to be several inches thick at least.  Given the number and spacing of columns, that doesn't strike me as being too thin for a metal walkway that can support itself as well as pedestrian traffic.  The stairs are iffy, but maybe they're cantilevered from the wall?

 

The second and third shots, yeah, I'll give you those.  Problem is both less support and the wrong sorts of apparent materials-- I don't think you want to be building a thin catwalk out of stones or bricks, especially not without any metal framework.

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The first one looks fine to me. You'd shit your pants walking on scaffolding if you think that's too thin! I agree with the concept though, it's much more aesthetically pleasing when supports are present and semi-regular and a suitable texture is used (I'd be pretty reluctant to walk across a long, precarious stretch of 8px thick crate tops)

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Your first example shows metal platforms; so no problem here, the entire reason metal is used in architecture is because of its structural strength.

 

9i7p6Ts.jpg

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The second example made out of brick is more acceptable as a nitpick, bricks would need a support underneath -- a thin metal platform, for example.

 

The third is example is somewhere in between. Large slabs of rock can be used to make thin bridges, but for verisimilitude it could use support pillars where it's connected to the bridges.

plI7GN8.jpg

Yes this curvy bridge is actually made out of stone slabs, though it's supported by metallic struts and cables.

NcYqU2R.jpg

This stone slab bridge, on the other hand, doesn't use any fanciful technology.

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It sounds silly but those shots are so inspirational :0

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Posted (edited)

I have to agree with you, last two shots are amazing. i might try to replicate them in my next map

( if i ever release my current project )

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10 hours ago, jerrysheppy said:

In the first (Quakeish) shot, I have no problem believing that the floors could hold if they were adequately supported.  They appear to be made of, or at least reinforced with, metal and they look to be about 8 or 16 units thick.  Doomguy as an adult male human is 56 units all, so those floors have to be several inches thick at least.  Given the number and spacing of columns, that doesn't strike me as being too thin for a metal walkway that can support itself as well as pedestrian traffic.  The stairs are iffy, but maybe they're cantilevered from the wall?

 

The second and third shots, yeah, I'll give you those.  Problem is both less support and the wrong sorts of apparent materials-- I don't think you want to be building a thin catwalk out of stones or bricks, especially not without any metal framework.

According to the Doom metrics, 10 vertical units is ~1 foot, so 8 to 16 units thick would equate to ~10-20 inches thick. That's a rather thick slab of metal, which would have a great deal of mechanical strength (as @Gez rightly stated also).

 

This assumes that the metal doesn't get hot, because metal tends to experience rather extreme plastic deformation when it gets hot enough. Stone and timber construction don't do this in the same way. So, you may want to rethink your thin metal walkway inside the flaming pit in your Hell map, if you're aiming for plausible realism.

 

Another thing that Gez pointed out (both implicitly and explicitly) is that for any sort of extended span, you will need cross-bracing. You wouldn't put a 6 inch sheet of steel across a 20 foot gap and expect it to hold weight without deforming. But if you put trusses or cross-braces underneath, you can easily cover longer spans between supports with relatively thin platforms. Think about the floors in your house or banquet halls on the upper floors of hotels. You don't have pillars and walls everywhere, but you can still have large rooms. The reasons is because of trusses and cross-bracing.

 

In the case of the platforms in Doom, for the sake of suspension of disbelief, if the cross-bracing isn't visible, it could be embedded inside the material, with what you see just being an outer covering (like a coating of lightweight concrete on building girders for steel construction).

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1 hour ago, Pegleg said:

This assumes that the metal doesn't get hot, because metal tends to experience rather extreme plastic deformation when it gets hot enough. Stone and timber construction don't do this in the same way. So, you may want to rethink your thin metal walkway inside the flaming pit in your Hell map, if you're aiming for plausible realism.

If we're going for realism here, then we also have to account for convection, which would incinerate our player long before the metal started warping.

Compare the melting point of iron (1,538 degrees C) to the melting point of average rock (around 1,200 degrees C), so our iron bridge would continue to exist in solid form above a magma pit, though it wouldn't be very strong, not that this is relevant because no one in reality could actually walk across it.

Basically, rock melts, metal warps (then melts), and timber catches fire.

 

But this is Doom, a game in which demons from Hell attack human bases on Phobos and Deimos and are defeated by one man with some perfectly ordinary (and a couple not-so-ordinary) weapons. It has completely solid liquids and teleportation and a planet that somehow gets completely crushed in a matter of days by the demons.

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31 minutes ago, Aquila Chrysaetos said:

If we're going for realism here, then we also have to account for convection, which would incinerate our player long before the metal started warping.

If we're talking about convection, then have fun trying to explain the Ice Grotto.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Gez said:

Yes this curvy bridge is actually made out of stone slabs, though it's supported by metallic struts and cables.

NcYqU2R.jpg

This stone slab bridge, on the other hand, doesn't use any fanciful technology.

 

I obviously didn't have a problem with the material of the stone bridge (for the reasons you state) but I did want to point out that, judging from the textures, this particular stone bridge seems to be made of small stones fitted together.  Like paving stones, except without any roadbed under them.  Which, without any substantial (probably metal) support under them, are going to be far less effective at bridging a gap than solid slabs will be.  Even with mortar between them. :D

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Don't confuse superficial weathering on the outside with a proof of masonry. This particular bridge (the Postbridge Clapper, in the Dartmoor region of the UK) has been standing since at least the year 1380; if it were made as you said it wouldn't have lasted for six centuries and counting.

 

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Gez said:

Don't confuse superficial weathering on the outside with a proof of masonry. This particular bridge (the Postbridge Clapper, in the Dartmoor region of the UK) has been standing since at least the year 1380; if it were made as you said it wouldn't have lasted for six centuries and counting.

 

 

Sorry, that was very poorly worded on my part.  When I said "this particular stone bridge" I meant the particular one in Memfis's screenshot, not in your real-life example.  In my mind the use of the word "textures" would make that clear, though in hindsight I suppose real-life objects obviously have 'textures' too, just not in the computer-graphics sense.

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Something just occurred to me. People are so used to 16-unit thick mid-texture bridges that they make 3D floors also 16 units thick. I guess that 16-uinit-thick bridges are a Doom tradition.

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How about you use a grate texture as your 3D floor and then make it have zero sector height. People walk on those in video games all the time. By the way those 3D floors in those screenshots look pretty supported to me. I have seen less support in real life. What about those floating platforms that we see so often? How do they get their support from bubble gum and large spinning fans underneath?

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