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Using GtkRadiant to make Basic Terrain

kat · 1 · 12425

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Offline kat

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Because the QeRadiant editor for Doom 3 and Quake 4 is no good for creating terrain meshes similar to what can be done with Quake 3's GTKRadiant it means using a 3D app to model the terrain. If you 're not confident about doing this then here's a 'quick' way to create a reasonably good terrain from brushwork converted to an editable model object. The following assumes you want to create a mesh for editing rather than just convert some brushwork to a model for use 'as is'.
  • Using any of the previous editors, GTKRadiant 1.4 for example, build yourself a tri-souped terrain mesh in the same way you would do normally for any Quake 3 powered game.
  • Texture the whole thing in common/caulk (caulk).
  • If you used the inbuilt or an external app to create the actual mesh you need to make sure the brushwork is 'ungrouped'; each brush of the tri-souped mesh has to be an individual object. Select the object, right click select 'ungroup entity'.
  • Save the map file as normal.
  • Open the Doom 3 or Quake 4 editor and 'open' or 'load' the map.
  • The console will 'parse' the brushwork and convert it as it loads.
  • Once loaded it'll most likely be 'black', it'll be untextured ('black' in the same as the black/blue 'notexture' editor texture GTKRadiant uses) so you need to cover everything in caulk again.
  • Once done, export the brushwork from the Doom 3 or Quake 4 editor to the OBJ model format using 'menu : Selection>export>export to...'
  • Open or import the OBJ model into a 3D app and get ready for a few steps to make a usable model;
  • 'Clean' the waste from the model - every face of the brushwork object will have been exported so you need to delete the unwanted faces. This may take a while on larger meshes.
  • Once clean, add a material and texture.
  • UVWmap the model (or vice versa, UVW then add the material).
  • If you did any extra work make sure the model is converted to triangular polygons (the mesh shouldn't have any 'quads' present').
  • Export the mesh to either ASE or LWO.
  • Save or move to your project folder.
  • Write a Material file and change edit any texture references in the ASE *BITMAP line.
  • Open Doom 3 or Quake 4 Radiant and load in your model. If all goes well you should see a textured object appear.
  • Box the map in caulk (or something to stop the map leaking) add a player_start, compile and marvel at your handiwork!
If you would rather not do any modelling you can create a terrain using GTKRadiant as per above and once you get it how you want, BSP the file and then convert the map to an ASE using Q3map2's -convert switch (BSP option). This will give you a functional ASE model that you can drop 'as is' into D3 or Q4 after you've edited any material references in the file.

For more info on prepping models for Doom 3, Quake 4 et al see the tutorials list on the right.

By the way...

You can use this method to build and then export for further modeling work anything you want; it's not restricted to 'terrain' as is the example above. So map objects and modeled fittings for maps can easily be created from an initial brushwork object exported from the editor.