SNOWLODGE

A Team Fortress 2 map set in a group of picturesque ski lodges.

Snowlodge is an attack/defend “capture point” map made for the game Team Fortress 2. Two teams, RED and BLU, are tasked with controlling the two capture points on the map. RED initially owns both points, and must defend them from BLU, who is the attacking team trying to capture them. If BLU captures both before the time limit runs out, they win – if RED manages to run the clock down before BLU can capture, then RED will win.
 
 
Snowlodge was initially conceived as a challenge project undertaken for TF2Maps.net’s semi-annual 72-hour mapping contest. My goal was to challenge myself with creating a fully detailed, fleshed out map with interesting setpieces and gameplay elements in the 72 hours allotted. Before the contest started, I gathered some reference images of various American and European ski lodges, and compiled sketches of what I planned the map to look like. During the course of the 72 hours, I planned out a strict work schedule, and finished in time with a map that was fully detailed, playable, and enough to win second place in the contest overall. The map has since received numerous polish updates, but the bulk of it was indeed created within the 72 hour deadline.
 
 
The design theory of Snowlodge revolved heavily around positive and negative space. I wanted to create viually stunning lodges, full of dense wooden architecture and cozy interiors – so, in order to keep the map from becoming visually noisy, I elected to keep the outdoors areas surrounding the lodges as sparse as possible. As a result, players’ eyes are drawn to the buildings while the serene surroundings create a feeling of isolation in a snowy tundra. The contrast between a warm, fire-lit interior and starkly cold, snowy exterior is very important to the visual design of this map. The progression of the “approach” areas being outside in the cold, and the “capture point” areas being inside one of the lodges each, provides a good visual indication for what type of gameplay will happen where.
 
 
Color balance was incredibly important to me when designing this map. The oranges and browns of the indoors areas were created to contrast with the icy blues and whites of the light outside. The large, wooden exteriors of the buildings clearly indicate which direction players should travel in order to reach the next area.

Roles

Level Design
Environment Art
Concept, Production, and Management
Team Control and Quality Assurance
Publiciser, Marketeer, and PR Management

Programs Used

Source Engine
Hammer Level Editor
Photoshop
Inkscape (vector editor)
Specific Texture Editors
Internet Forums

Showcase video made by Amando “7hrone” Gasca