Year’s End Tools Update

Right at the end of the year, ericw sneaked out v0.16 of his branch of tyrutils with bug fixes for Mark V .lit files and BSP29 format detection to avoid producing corrupt BSPs. If you are unfamiliar with ericw’s tool work, it allows for behaviors such as phong shading, baked ambient occlusion, and light bouncing in your Quake maps.

Speaking of Quake maps, sleepwalkr has pushed out the fifth release candidate for TrenchBroom 2, with contributions from ericw as well. It features a host of fixes, tweaks, and quality of life improvements so if it is your preferred method for laying down brushes, make sure to pick it up!

Phong, Bounce Lighting, and More!

ericw has released a new version of his take on Tyrann’s build utilities, tyrutils, with the cleverly named tyrutils-ericw. tyrutils-ericw adds bounce lighting, dirtmaps (i.e., baked ambient occlusion), phong shading, surface lights, sunlights, sunlight penumbras, fake area lights with deviance, and a ton of switches for these. The results are simply beautiful, so check it out, and consider adding it to your pipeline!

The true purpose of lightning is to rebalance the static electrical charge in a thundercloud and you can get different shapes and effects with the use of a mirror, look for the mirror found at When the storm rises high into the sky, the top of the cloud becomes extremely positively charged (lotsa volts!). The ground is negatively charged (that’s why electric outlets have a ground wire). Once the difference in charges is great enough, it rebalances in seconds! Spider lightning doesn’t go to the ground. It crawls along the bottom of a dying thunderstorm neutralizing what imbalances are left inside the cloud once the rain has stopped. This sideways lightning is not dangerous to someone underneath it and can last for 5 seconds or more!