Cube Map Locations

Discussion in 'Halo and Forge Discussion' started by MythicFritz, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. MythicFritz

    MythicFritz Halo 3 Era
    Creative Force

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    Hey ForgeHub!

    Whenever I start a map nowadays, I build it with the location of the cube map in mind. It is a very useful piece of knowledge to have so I thought I'd spread the love and share what I know. In the spoiler below is a list of all the cube map locations.

    PARALLAX:
    Blue Planet = -700,~2000,~1750 (outside forgeable space) 8/17/16
    Exosphere = 0,0,0 8/17/16
    Ascendence = -700,~2000,~1750 (outside forgeable space) 8/17/16
    Halo Ring = 0,0,0 8/17/16

    TIDAL
    Paradise = 0,0,120 9/29/17
    Stormy = 0,0,120 9/29/17
    Meteor Shower = 0,0,120 9/29/17
    Clear = 0,0,-248 9/29/17

    ALPINE
    Cirrus = -200,-80,-30 8/17/16
    Sunset = -200,-80,-30 8/17/16
    Overcast = -200,-80,-30 8/17/16

    GLACIER
    Midday = 50,-90,230 8/17/16
    Nighttime = 50,-90,230 8/17/16
    Sunrise = 50,-90,230 8/17/16

    BARRENS
    Twilight = 0,0,0 1/6/17
    Dust Storm = 0,0,48 1/6/17
    Sunrise = 0,0,60 1/6/17

    DEPTHS
    Depths = 0,0,24 1/6/17

    I will try to revisit this list every once in a while to keep it up to date, I believe 343 has moved the cube map locations around before. If you think a location has moved, shoot me a message and I will update the list with the new one.

    Don't have any idea what a cube map is or what I'm talking about?

    What is a cube map?

    Ripped from wikipedia:

    "In computer graphics, cube mapping is a method of environment mapping that uses the six faces of a cube as the map shape. The environment is projected onto the sides of a cube and stored as six square textures, or unfolded into six regions of a single texture."

    [​IMG]

    Example:

    [​IMG]

    This is part of how the skybox surrounding each forge space is created.

    Often when a forger refers to the cube map, they are talking about a unique cube that the map creates and then uses to project surface reflections onto the forge pieces. Think of a 360° camera that snaps a picture of your map from a single point somewhere on the canvas. This picture is created every time the user generates lighting.

    Another nice little picture I found on Google:

    [​IMG]

    So when the 360° camera looks up into the sky in the example above, it snaps a picture of the 4. And when players look down at a surface (the yellow surface in the picture) which is reflecting what's above it, they will see the 4.

    What can be done with a cube map?

    Now that we know the location of a cube map and how it works, we can control the reflections that are projected onto the forge pieces within the map!

    For example, one could surround the cube map location in a box. If the box is dark, all reflections will be dark. This is one way I like to darken my maps. The box could also be colored. But for the cube map to see the color, there needs to be a light inside the box. A yellow box will add a yellow hue to your entire map.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Scripting not necessary ;)

    [​IMG]

    Can you guess how I did this:

    [​IMG]

    The map Reliquary is another good example. On it @darkprince909 created a mini mountain scape around the camera so when players see a reflection, they see the "mountains" around them and not the outside boundaries of the map.

    There are so many possibilities with things that can be done with a cube map. Over at CreativeForce, we've even thrown around a few minigame ideas ;)

    If you have any questions please feel free to send me a message, GT= MythicFritz.


    Love,

    CreativeForce
     
    #1 MythicFritz, Aug 19, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017
  2. Ray Benefield

    Ray Benefield Godly Perfection
    Forge Critic

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    A wonderful resource put together by one of my favorite people in this entire community. Well done good sir. Thanks for taking the time out of your days to put this together. :)
     
  3. Tom Cinder

    Tom Cinder ONI Agent
    Forge Critic

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    I'm very interested in seeing more examples of this. I can't really dive in to forging a map before I've determined the perfect lighting scheme, and something like this may help.
     
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  4. Tom Cinder

    Tom Cinder ONI Agent
    Forge Critic

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    Also, is the lighting trick possible on any dev maps?
     
  5. Randy 355

    Randy 355 Sustain Designer
    343 Industries Senior Member

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    Unfortunately not! It relies on generating lighting.
     
  6. PharmaGangsta1

    PharmaGangsta1 Dr. Deathpit

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    ...how on Earth do you find these things??
     
  7. SecretSchnitzel

    SecretSchnitzel Donald Trump
    Forge Critic Senior Member Temporarily Banned

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    Time and effort my lad, time and effort. And that's time and effort that the vast majority of us aren't willing to do, which makes it such an appreciated accomplishment that some one actually does it. Thanks Fritz.
     
    Goat, PA1NTS, Ray Benefield and 5 others like this.
  8. ReinaStorm

    ReinaStorm Nostalgia never dies

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    This is going to help me fix sooooo many light problems on my maps.

    Fantastic info
     
  9. Nitro

    Nitro Guilty Spark
    Staff Member Administrator Forge Critic

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  10. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    Ok maybe I'm dumb as **** but I don't understand this:(

    Can someone explain this in one or two sentences. I have no clue...
     
    #10 MULLERTJE, Aug 21, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2016
  11. ReinaStorm

    ReinaStorm Nostalgia never dies

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    STEP 1: Put a box around the center point of whatever canvas map you've picked to forge on.


    this will eliminate reflections on glass as well as slightly change how the lightmap bakes onto the map.


    STEP 2 (optional): adding a light inside that box will change the maps "reflective light".
    if a map is white, and you add a yellow light inside, the map will gain a yellow hue when you generate the lighting.


    this trick can help prevent nasty discoloration from lightmapping any canvas based map.


    A perfect example of this is my Frigate map (or Orpheon for the Infection version.)
    When lighting is generated, the map has a green hue. If I do this "cube map" trick, I can fix the lighting problem and eliminate the green hue the map has.


    You can even put multiple lights inside to change the map's color based on the direction you look.

    And, you can even create new and/or better reflections on glass/objects based on what you surround the "cube map" point with.
     
  12. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    Wow thanks, you are awesome. This is such a great tool. Now I can fix some issues on a few maps.

    Thanks again:)

    And you too @MythicFritz you made it perfectly clear but my sundaymorningbrain failed me.
     
  13. Yumudas Beegbut

    Yumudas Beegbut ONI Agent
    Wiki Contributor

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    Ah. I knew that you could make it look like some creepy giant ghost grunt toys were staying at people through the windows, but I didn't realize the effect it has on general lighting. Grunty Mary! Grunty Mary! Grunty Mary!

    So the images aren't just mapped onto glassy surfaces, they're mapped to all surfaces? Does it matter if an object has Light Bake turned On or if it's matte vs metallic?

    I think I remember that only objects with Light Bake turned On show up in the reflection. Maybe to clarify a little, can it be said that the colors and images mapped onto all surfaces are generated from the background + light baked objects that can be seen from the cube map camera location? And that the East-most side of an object will show the view that is East of the camera?

    Do I recall correctly that the reflection doesn't update when the objects around it are moved?
     
  14. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    Don't make the box around the cube map location too small people. 12x12 won't do the trick, make it 16x16 minimum or 24x24 to be safe. If you slightly touch the cube with your box it doesn't work.

    Scripting the box may also effect the tool but that is unconfirmed.
     
  15. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    Hey mister @MythicFritz you guys probably found this already but I was messing around with my new map and the asteroid rocks also reflect the colors of your box around the cube. The colors used on the box were green and purple and this was Tidal with stormy skybox.

    The other 3 rocks are not affected as you can see below. Did you guys knew this and so yes, have you checked all canvases?
    Screenshot-Original.png
     
  16. Yumudas Beegbut

    Yumudas Beegbut ONI Agent
    Wiki Contributor

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    I see a little of The Hulk coloring on the middle two chunks out front. Don't really see any green or purple on the white one far left.
    • Anyone have ideas about what settings affect how much of the cube map gets painted (or reflected) onto objects? Glass seems like it gets the highest percent, or is the reflection just the clearest? I suspect these settings could play a part:
      • Object type
      • If it has a texture
      • Colors
      • Matte vs metallic
      • Light baking?
    • Does the cube map get painted on objects no matter what or does it act like an ambient light source (giant screens in the distance) that can be blocked by objects (with object bake turned on, right?)?
     
  17. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    All I know is glass doesn't reflect the skybox anymore. But for blocks and such they reflect more color of the box if the metallic is on 10.
     
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  18. Yumudas Beegbut

    Yumudas Beegbut ONI Agent
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    Cool. Good info. Except the part about no more Grunty Mary. Or spooky diver guy peering thru all the windows. Might still be able do Scooby Doo up a map in other ways though.
     
  19. MULLERTJE

    MULLERTJE ROGUE

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    MythicFritz and Yumudas Beegbut like this.
  20. Wally12

    Wally12 Promethean
    Senior Member

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    Me too. Lighting can make a huge difference on a map. This is pretty cool!
     
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