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BS1 Map Expansion - Welcome Center
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Another Level Map expanded for the MMORPG to its full extent (not only what we are allowed to see in the solo game). The much larger interior spaces and facilities include functions that should have been present ( to be an integral part of the City) and give the MMORPG players more to interact with.
Level 1 http://img339.imageshack.us/img339/5135/wc11.png (several floors above level 0)
Purple - Blocked doors and passages
Green - Continuations of a floor level (implied by a door or windows or blocked passage/door or stacked floors)
Orange - Additional space within given structural walls - possibly utility space (ie- sumps at lowest level)
Light Grey - Roof surfaces or catwalks/balconies
Red - Atlantic Express tracks, doors and airlocks
Yellow - Stairs and elevators (Sinclair Deluxe has additional stairs and service elevator added)
Black - Structural walls (reinforced concrete)
Dark Grey - bulk foundation concrete (built ontop/into seabed rock)
Blue - Water areas (water contacting exterior surface)
Brown - Seabed
First level of BS1 (besides the Lighthouse).
Usual level issues to fix :
- Initial view arriving shows building far to high above the seabed. There is no reason that foundations or the buildings have to be that tall (the brief game view is just to be impressive). That height would be reduced to bring lower floors much closer to seabed level where 'Street' structures and Atlantic Express tracks would run.
- Paper thin walls - corrected in a few places (zero thickness doesnt work structurally)
- Adjacent buildings are 1/2 size (their number of floors/windows would be reduced in MMORPG)
- Rocks up on the 6th floor outside windows (done for looks in the Solo game). Will have to use the 'ornamental rock' excuse again.
- One window looking out on a skybox, when the same area from a different viewpoint (window) there is a building at that location. In MMORPG every outside view will be of real buildings/seascape.
- Missing room from map - kitchen in Kashmir Club - added
- The same Skybox (background) picture is repeated twice (180 degrees apart) so it really only gives clues about the number of building in the general area, rather than exact placement.
look at :
Map orientation was determined from direction Bathysphere would have come from Lighthouse. The Lighthouse facing and Bathysphere's initial facing can be told by the moon which is to the right side of the entry door (and in a far northern latitude the moon will be closer to the horizon towards the South) - so that door and the Bathysphere inside face Notherly. The window closes so we cant see if the Bathysphere turns at all before emerging onto the seabed below and then down into the city buildings (it twists and turns a few times) apparently doing its final approach from the West.
There are buildings on the Welcome Center map that block many water approaches (but nothing says a Bathysphere cant tunnel thru a building). The whole side of the Transit building was open as we approached (the right side of the Bathysphere Station building is the only one clear/open). Looking at the Bathysphere map : ( )
the position of Welcome Center would be East of the Lighthouse (and we make an S curve path coming out of the Lighthouse's descent shaft, out of a wall of rock at edge of the City). So North is down on the maps for this level.
As mentioned elsewhere, some of those big signs on buildings are NOT necessarily indicating the signs position IS the named locations, but instead are advertisements placed in a high-traffic venue (example- "Fleet Hall" is across Rapture at Fort Frolic ).
"AD IDEM" (seen just above the portal the Bathysphere enters arriving at Welcome Center) - law : 'in agreement' or 'at a meeting of minds on a point'.
For a connected/transit Hub, the original Welcome Center didnt have alot of alternate paths linking it into the rest of Rapture. Being a reception/arrival area would only be the first function of it (upto 1952), and its connections should be many more than what we saw on the original game Level map. I added many more Metro Bathysphere routes. (even after immigration stopped, it was still a major city center and transportation hub). We can see a number of Viaducts connecting various buildings in the area (being the equivalent of sidewalks). I added more Viaduct portals to other nearby buildings in logical places. Various product/service showcases, orientation and institutional introduction offices are arrayed in this area, easily accessible to new immigrants.
Only 2 (Bathysphere) dock/holes in the Welcome Center Metro Station ??? With 8-10 people per full load (less if you pay extra for First-Class), that is not a great traffic capacity (even with a cycle time of once every couple of minutes) for a fairly busy section of the City. (This is more evidence requiring a transport system with greater capacity and with more reasonable fares -- the Trolley system I elaborate on elsewhere).
On this map there are now other Metro Bathysphere Stations located in the cluster of buildings (added within easy walking distance of each other). That one in Medical Pavillion is for Emergency Services, but since Fontaine/Atlas steers you to to it maybe all the others are wrecked or too well guarded.
Significant connections to Raptures Metro Trolley system (not shown) would be less expensive convenient transport for most/majority of Rapture's people. Welcome Center would most certainly also have had an Atlantic Express Station (also down near 'Street'/seabed level) and wold likewise be at the convergence of several AE routes (and important station).
The large waiting area at the Lighthouse-Route Bathysphere Station would be due to it being the primary disembarkation site for the majority of Rapture's immigrants. Numerous orientation services and tours would be offered to recently arrived people, as well as last minute/finalized paperwork/arrangements (official City offices). Ive added a connection to the indicated Hotel Monsenor that could be utilized by new immigrants, until they got their new residences arranged.
Added, a Neptunes Bounty Bathysphere Station (much more 'no frills' design for people going to an industrial/commercial district). Added Arcadia, Fort Frolic and Olympus Heights Bathysphere Route Stations linked into the 'Transit Hub'. Those routes also lead to other major Bathysphere hubs connecting to many other places in Rapture. New immigrants would have tours arranged for them to show them the sights and parts of the City they specificly would be interested in. The water shafts (part of the BAthysphere airlocks) that descend to some sideways opening below the lower map level can be seen going thru some of the buildings.
The Kashmir Restaurant we are shown on the Solo game level map is only a small part of the whole establishment (too small for the way the Novel describes it or for it to play its part in the Kashmir Incident). Ive designated those existing (BS1 Map) areas as a 'Lounge' and 'Club', and have made connections to the now incorporated larger Kashmir's establishment floorplan (we saw used in the Multi-Player map).
Those central 'Elevators' (big open atrium) also go down to the 'Street' level (not shown), where there are large 'transit hubs' for the Metro Trolley system and to Welcome Center's original MK1 and Mk2 Atlantic Express Stations (the original, post-abandonment, was converted to a Submarine Dock, and the Mk2 AE became an all Freight operation). This Elevator atrium section has 5 stories (seems like there should be more, but this area has fairly high ceilings and the usual thick structural floors needed to reinforce the building's walls).
Added, a Transit Mall, a set of shops for the 'Transit Hub', which would be various things like newsstands, coffee shop, sandwich/pizza/hotdog place, bar, etc... A second Mall level including Kashmir's Eat-n-Dash for the upscale commuters. Added, a convenient Elevator in the Transit Hub connects the levels and extends down to the Trolley/Atlantic Express level to facilitate the inevitable passenger transfers between the various transportation systems.
The Fort Frolic Bathysphere Station now indicates it is decorated with Sander Cohen 'Art' (the original stuff, not the plaster covered corpses) and has a viewing Balcony that commuters could sit down and enjoy their coffee/sandwiches. Various advertisements and announcements for Fleet Hall and other Cohen show venues would be located here. Actually, each of the Route Stations had some special decorations related to its destination.
Parts of adjacent buildings in the Medical Pavilion (next level map set) can be seen. The Security Airlock leading to Medical Pavillion was shifted a little to prevent the buildings of that complex from directly colliding/overlapping spatially with those on this Welcome Center level map (and even then there is still a shared wall with part of the main 'Kashmir' building in Welcome Center).
Those Securis Doors are not really as 'secure' as they would need to be. Ditto for the glass Viaducts that are supposed to keep out 280 psi (pounds per square inch) water pressure, which seemed to be so easily sliced into by a piece of aluminum airplane fuselage drifting down thru water. Seriously they would have engineered much better than that, or failures would have destroyed Rapture long ago.
A Bathysphere's hull is at least an inch thick steel (to handle water pressure at Rapture's depth). That Splicer who tried to cut it open when you first arrive wasn't quite insane enough to keep trying despite it being impossible. Activating the Door Emergency Open switch on the outside might have been more productive (but then you (the Player) would then probably be dead before the story really began. It might have been even more scary for that to have happened, but with the Security Flybot showing up to 'save the day').
The Rapture Book (Novel) mentions repairs to the cable system for lowering the Bathysphere down from the Lighthouse and I have previously decided in my design that most Rapture Bathyspheres (actually defined as a cable driven system, versus a Submarine/'Bathyscaph' which are self powered and free-floating) work on drag-cables for their ordinary propulsion between stations(like 'Cable-Cars'). A cable is much more reliable than a self piloting vehicle (especially for something that is to be used as public transit - particularly by the more affluent folk) -- the system is actually a double cable for added reliability. The discrepency between the arrival animation (invisible cable) and the Novel would be resolved.
In the Welcome Center cluster of buildings, there is the Rapture Tower Hotel, which is the tallest building in Rapture. It is 40 stories tall, taller than Prometheus Tower which seems as high because its base rests at a higher seabed elevation). The Rapture Tower Hotel is a large cylindrical building (which should have been a more common design in Rapture due to their structural advantages, as well as Art Deco often incorporating curves as part of its style). This building would have a significant number of commercial office suites as well as the Hotel and Apartments. One hopes the elevators didnt have any transdimensional issues.
The Top of the Rapture Tower Hotel is within 100 feet of the surface of the Ocean, but on the 'downstream' side of the highpoints of Mount Ryan (the undersea volcanoe Rapture is built on) so is not imperilled by Icebergs coming down thru the Denmark Strait. At the top, there was a Tourist attraction of a tethered observation chamber which floated up and broke the surface so that the paying passengers could see the sky.
Note - Many of the building seen in the skybox window views are a distortion (done for effect in the game) and are usually at least half the presented height, in floors.
A large Jet Postal installation is in the Welcome Center. It is needed for the many Businesses and serves cross-connections ( a huge web) of the pneumo mail system, to other parts of Rapture. This Station includes one of the 'Storing and Forwarding' systems useful to the many busy people, who could have their mail forwarded to them in any part of the City. ( http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/3256/pneumo.png )
As mentioned, numerous immigrant 'Welcome' facilities existed in this building cluster, filling many of the floors and buildings adjacent to the path we traverse. New Immigrants have many things that need to be arranged, with their entire lives being transplanted into Rapture. With the bulk of 40000 people being brought in over a span of about 4 years, that would be about 200 per week (likely in bunches of that size, simultaneously from individual ships). Moving them and their possessions and setting up their new lives would require alot of work. When immigration largely ceased, other commercial operations would move in to 'The Welcome Center'into repurposed space in the still well-connected, up-scale locale.
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The Welcome Center is just one of many clusters of buildings in Rapture, and you might think 'How did all that possibly get built ? ".
Consider - Ryans surface empire constructed large industrial (including underwater) projects, and he had recently made advances in construction automation. Most of Rapture is built out of mass produced Concrete, and large building sections were prefabricated with industrial efficiency. Finally, most of Welcome Center (and the other City areas we visit) are rather Squat buildings, only a few stories high (despite all those wonderous views of tall building we see thru the windows).