Andrew Weldon



Personal Work

You'll Shoot Your Eye Out

Former Raven colleague and frequent collaborator Matthew Breit and I re-united at LightBox Interactive in 2009. With restored co-worker status came the return of daily lunch discussions of all the side projects we wanted to do but would never find time to finish.

One such project for Matt was building a Quake III level inspired by Peter Gric's Realignment. Rather than tediously build the "disintegrating cubes" look by hand, he had developed a Python script to generate cubes in Maya, then export back to Radiant. Matt's original plans called for stripping the walls off one of Bal's old Quake III DM maps and treating it as an art-only portfolio piece—until I volunteered to design a new and fully-playable layout to go with it.

I began piecing together the layout in what little spare time I could find April 2010. Over the span of a few months we went back and forth on the design, settling on a monolithic concrete structure ripe for cubing. With the layout mostly done, Matt shifted his focus to finishing the CubeSpew script and began cubing the layout. That's when disaster struck. The level was so large and the cubes so dense that Quake III's renderer couldn't keep up; we'd either have to strip the layout down significantly or build a new and smaller layout from scratch.

We decided to set the original layout aside for possible later use—it still lives on my hard drive as kfs3dm2—and I started work on a new, slimmer design. Much like Q4DM10, I anchored the design to a central jump pad, this time arcing players through a hole in a central tower looming over the level. The new layout still retains a three-tiered structure from the original, but in this iteration relies more on short jump pads instead of long, size-bloating, and difficult-to-cube ramps. The new size played excellently in a 3-player playtest, and Matt started cubing once more.

In final form, the level still hits some occasional low-performance spikes due to the density of cubes; despite hardware advances, Quake III's renderer doesn't handle "throw a bajillion triangles at each core" batching in quite the way new video cards prefer. Still, by way of Matt's cubes, textures, and lighting, this is without a doubt the most visually striking level I've ever worked on and it also stands as one of my stronger pure DM layouts.

Matt released an updated version of this level in March 2012 in which he updated the CubeSpew script to generate variable-resolution lightmap scaling on faces (for better-defined shadows) and hooked up an AAS file for basic bot navigation. While the standard Quake III bots don't handle the numerous ledges and jumps well, it does make the level playable offline for those looking to take it for a spin.

In 2019, the Quake 3 map archive site LvL included You'll Shoot Your Eye Out in their ..::LvL Q3A - 20 Years 20th anniversary map pack, featuring a curated set of 22 of the top levels on the site. LvL's separate review1 of the map describes it as belonging to a family of levels that, "pushes the idea of Q3 level editing beyond everything else that has been released to date."

For more on this level, including technical cube details, visit

1 Incidentally, the two other maps referenced in this review are by Simon "sock" O'Callaghan, who Matt and I both worked with for a time on Wolfenstein (2009) at Raven Software. Small world!

Quake 3

February 2012

Level Design

Andrew Weldon, Matthew Breit


Matthew Breit