Moving on to Other Things

I’ve gone back and forth over the years about whether or not I had time to develop this campaign to completion. My job is pretty time intensive and I no longer have enough free time to finish development of this campaign. At this time, I’m suspending development of this campaign and moving on to other less time-intensive hobbies.

While I have to move onto other things, I’ll leave the campaign online at the former L4D Maps Site so people can continue to enjoy it (now Game Maps):

I wish I had the stamina to continue, but I did get a few releases of the campaign out for people to enjoy. It’s been a fun ride. I’ve appreciated all the comments, reviews, feedback, and support I’ve received over the years. It’s been a wild ride from the first alpha I put out to the third map that shall remain uncompleted.

Thank you again for all your support.

Map 3 progress

Development has been moving along. Here’s a few screenshots showing progress on Map 3. I haven’t been able to move as quickly as I’d like on this map, but it is beginning to come together. Here’s some screenshots for you to enjoy:

2013-02-12_00001 2013-02-12_00002

re3_streets_030074 re3_streets_030075 re3_streets_030073 re3_streets_030071

More content soon!

Addressing some FAQs

I’m aware people discuss the work I’ve done and are sometimes displeased. I get that the fans of Resident Evil series are passionate because they want me to get it right. However, I’m not going to be able to please everyone with the choices I make and that’s something I accept. I do welcome the discussion though.

I’ve wanted to build this campaign since before there was even a Left 4 Dead series. It dates all the way back to Dark Forces II where I built a small version of the RPD in JED. I wanted to take a few minutes to address some questions I’ve had since my return:

Where did you go and why did you come back?

When the Kotaku article came out, I wasn’t anywhere near ready to deal with the consequences of having that level of visibility. For months, I had constant stream of communication about what people wanted to see, what they thought of me, and my work (good or bad).

I had my supporters (and I appreciate each and every one of you), but I also had many critics. I welcome criticism because it helps me improve. However, I had significant number of people who just commented to take me down a peg. I recall one particular comment that still resonates with me from a youtube comment: “This looks BAD!”.  After a while I just felt completely burned out.I needed to take some time off from this hobby and disconnect from the community that I thought despised me and my work.

I was planning to walk away entirely until I had a conversation last September with some close friends in Los Angeles who do a lot of creative and highly visible work. We talked about our experiences with the community and how there are always people there who want to take you down a peg, but that didn’t stop them from continuing to do what they loved. I told them about my experiences with the campaign and they ultimately convinced me to go on.

The other portion that finally put me over the edge were all the supporters I have. I owed it to you to deliver some content after all this time and believing in this even when I went silent.

It took you three years to put out two maps?

I realize it’s a long time. It could have taken a lot less if I had stuck with it but I chose to take time off and got busy with work.

It’s my hope that people enjoy what I have put out so far. It may not seem like it, but it’s come a long way from the beginning. The first version of the first map was a far cry from what it is now.

Why are you building this on your own?

The true reason is I can’t stick to deadlines for a hobby. It’s not fair of me to expect others to either. If I were part of a mod team, I’d have to adhere to their deadlines and would fail to meet them. That’s not fair to anyone.

While it’s true that I’m the only one building the maps, the stuff in them doesn’t come from just me. I have numerous people who have volunteered textures and models. I have them to thank for improving the work and really taking it to the next level.

I think you’re an arrogant guy and I don’t like you. You’re not the only one who can do this stuff.

I’m really sorry I came across that way and I think we’ve gotten off on entirely the wrong foot. I don’t consider myself to be an expert. I’m building this campaign because it’s something I wanted to see done and have for a very long time, but I don’t think this series belongs to me by any means. Anyone who accuses me of that hasn’t taken the time to get to know me and doesn’t understand what this is really about: I’m doing it simply because I want to see it done.

Some people have interpreted my comments in a different way than they were intended and for that I’m sorry for not being clear. I love both Left 4 Dead and Resident Evil. It just seemed to make sense to finally put them together.At the same time, I can’t get along with everyone, but I’m certainly a reasonable guy.

You know RPD in the third game is really blocked off right?

I’m aware. I also think it’s a lot of lost potential if I stuck to that. So yeah, I broke away from continuity, but you get more content out of it. It’s also the first cut. I may have the survivors be the ones to block everything off. There’s possibilities there. Hopefully you see them.

I will break continuity sometimes to keep it interesting. Map 3 should return players to a more familiar path.

Why don’t you let anyone comment on your blog?

It’s not because I don’t like to talk to people and hear from them. It’s because there’s too many spam bots that register and start posting adds and junk in the comments section. If you want to get a hold of me, visit the campaign page. I try to respond to everyone who has a question.

Progress on Map 3

Thank you for the feedback and continued support. I’m still in shock about how many people have enjoyed playing the current release and want more. Here’s a new video showing progress on Map #3. Keep in mind this is an alpha map and subject to a lot of change as it’s under serious construction.

Evolution of Alpha into Beta

Several years ago (2009), I released an alpha map called re3streetsa for left 4 dead 1. At the time, I was relatively new to mapping. The reviews were quite negative. While it may have left some scars, it also pushed me to do better. I wiped the slate clean and started fresh on an improved version which is no part of version 1.1. Here’s a series of screenshots that show the differences between the alpha map and the current release.

Thank you for making version 1.1 a success!

re3_streets_020057The kind words and great feedback I’ve gotten when I unexpectedly released version 1.1 of this campaign have been overwhelming. It’s hard to think that I almost gave up this hobby entirely. The devoted fans who believe in me and continued to do so when I disappeared will not be forgotten.

Since it’s release on Sunday afternoon, Last Escape has been downloaded from 3,655 times. I can tell you that I am very humbled and proud to be a part of the Left 4 Dead modding community. Each and every one of you keep this thing moving forward. Thank you for supporting me.

Release 1.1 is live!

Download Link
Alternate Download

Known bugs:
-The second map doesn’t terminate upon completion correctly. To exit, you must quit the map. Working on a solution.
-Misc navigation/bot problems.
-Geometry rendering errors on some wall details.

Campaign Status

TLDR version: I’ll be releasing a version of the campaign on this stie on Sunday.

I’ll be honest, I pretty much slipped off the radar in the L4D world over the past year. I haven’t been on Steam to chat, I haven’t even playing a single full round of L4D in months. I needed to get away for a bit and do some other things. Almost every single day, I get some form of communication asking about the status of this mod. For a long time I just went silent, disconnecting myself from everyone. This game me some time to reflect. I realized I made two errors:

1. Trying to please everyone with feature adds.

2. Trying to do everything myself (with the exception of the kind people who volunteered materials and models). I did it all: sound creation, map construction, event planning, bug testing, etc.

I became overwhelmed and needed a break. However, in my absence, I got a lot of messages from people who wanted to see this completed or at least the progress I’ve made over the past few years. I owe it to people to deliver. This evening, I’m compiling map 2 and looking it over for any seriously breaking bugs. I need to test the VPK on another computer I own to ensure everything sounds right and looks right. Stay tuned here, I’ll have a link soon and a new video.

New L4D2 Video

Waiting on Valve

Hi Folks- It’s been a long time with no update. I have taken a break from mapping for a while but am ready to get back to work here. However, a recent update to the l4d authoring tools had broken something very important: model viewer. I can still work on the map but can’t directly see the models I’m adding which is a huge problem. I’m waiting on valve to come up with a fix for this. If it isn’t soon I may have no choice but to port over to L4D2 as those tools are working fine. I’ll make the decision relatively soon as I’m taking a week off from work in March to work on this. Stay tuned.