Tutorial 02 - Tools and Editors (part 3) - MAXELL's HOME

ID-Tech4 » Tutorial 02 - Tools and Editors


Note: The following four editors (editParticles, editAFs, editSounds, editLights) need running game or the DoomEdit with loaded map to work properly. You can start these editors even without running game but you can’t do anything in them.


This command starts Particle editor. This editor is in the form of window with lot of editable items, but it is very intuitive. You can create custom particle effects like smoke, fire, lighting, bubbles, etc. When you want to create your own particle effect, first try to find one that roughly matches your needs and then edit it according to your wishes. It is really faster way than creating new one from scratch. Just change its material and parameters (Speed, Size, Count...). If you start up Particle editor in the running game with loaded map you can see your selected effect right in front of you in the game world. Changes of parameters are immediately shown on ingame particle effect preview.


Letters “AF” in the command stand for “articulated figures” – better known as “rag dolls”. These terms refer to physical simulation of character’s body anatomy which replaces “static” death animation. For example after you kill an enemy character, the engine will switch to rag doll animation of this killed character. This rag doll animation is based on collisions of rag doll bodies in real time. Articulated figures editor is tool for defining these rag doll bodies in id Tech 4 engine. More information about Articulated figures editor will be given in the final chapter dealing with character creation.


As the name of this editor suggests, this editor manages sound effects. With this Sound editor you can only insert sound entities into your maps and set their parameters. You can’t create or generate new sounds in this editor; all your source sound files have to be prepared in advance. Doom 3 supports Wav and Ogg formats. You can use these formats directly in the engine or in sound shaders. In the case of sound shaders, the engine offers better control over sound effects (you can set variants of one sound, volume, looping…).

The Sound editor is designed primary for sound guys (non-level designer) to run around the levels and create a spooky acoustic experience, so it works independently of DoomEdit. Inserted sound entitles can be eventually saved in the level (directly saved as a sound entities in the map file).


This command activates Light editor (in the DoomEdit press “J” key). Light editor itself is very simple. The Doom 3 engine has three types of lights (or exactly two types, while the Parallel Light is a special type of the Point Light).

Point Light – is the omnidirectional light; it is similar to light bulb in the real life. There is a center point, and it lights up everything in some radius around that center point. Objects closer to the center point are illuminated more. Size of the light is set by the Radius parameter. Brightness of the light is influenced by a brightness of used color.

Projected Light – A projected light goes off in one direction only, away from the light source (like a flashlight). Size and shape of light cone can be adjusted. You can adjust it by changing matrix numbers in the Light editor or easier way by dragging pink points of the light in the DoomEdit (adjusting cone size and its orientation in a space). Appearance of projected light can be changed by setting up texture.

Parallel Light – By marking the light as parallel, the light acts as if the center is extruded out to infinity. All the shadows will go in the same direction, and all the highlights in the bumps will face the same direction. This is very handy for creating ambient light or sunlight. In comparison with normal Point light you have to use higher Radius values to match normal results.

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