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CTF map making challenge
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Duaneski

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Duaneski

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  Batteries wrote:
  Duaneski wrote:I will provide this list here shortly.


Two weeks, right?


Yep. We remain on schedule
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Jeffph79

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Jeffph79

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I am officially declaring myself the winnet deal with it
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Jeffph79

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Jeffph79

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[link://1,57168,Aeschylus v2,0,2]
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wookieontheweb

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wookieontheweb

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You can be the winnet I'm not sure what one of those is

i would claim to be the winner but I've forgotten what this challenge was about! Is anyone here an archaeologist?

Android 9. Samsung Galaxy A50
Batteries

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Batteries

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  wookieontheweb wrote:You can be the winnet I'm not sure what one of those is

i would claim to be the winner but I've forgotten what this challenge was about! Is anyone here an archaeologist?


I think it had something to do with creating a map for Crazy Train Fans. Those Ozzy buffs are really demanding of their Uniwar maps.
The Impaler

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The Impaler

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OP does not deliver. Lol I was late but at least i finished mine xD

Member of the balance team
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Highest Score: 2685
Highest Rank: #4
Current Rank: N/A
Highest Championship Ranking: 4th
Highest Tournament Ranking: 4th
Current Record: 131W, 14D, 4L
Winner of Duaneski's mapmaker challenge
Winner of Angkor's 2v2 Grand mapmaking challenge
Winner of Lkasr's 3-Minute Tournament
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Duaneski

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Duaneski

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https://youtu.be/zZSfTvDBKJA

This is the link to Episode 2: including the winners of the CTF Challenge and a QUICK breakdown of each map.

I'll be posting the write ups for each map here shortly.
OmegaD

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OmegaD

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lol nicely done 'Ski.
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Duaneski

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Duaneski

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Rewards sent today. Included an extra 100uc each to the winners for their exceptional patience

Below is the more in-depth writeups for each map. I did not include pictures here, for time constraint reasons. The map name is included, or you can check out the YouTube video of course.

I apologize for the formatting. Unfortunately lose the formatting going from Word to iOS.

Zardecil – Chasmic (Races: ALL)

20/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
3/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
2/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

36/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
11/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
15/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
13/20 (Timeliness)
8/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
5/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 74/100
Notes: This map’s overall score took quite a beating over the Race Balance and Unit Build variety. I’d like to start by explaining this – in my opinion at any rate: the center Flag is surrounded by chasms. Underlings can zip right across there in one turn. It’s gonna take Saps and Titans 2 turns to traverse for a cap there. Those Chasms pose a particular problem for both Saps and Titans as well since they don’t have the Swarmer as a base unit, and can’t rely on GL to stop the capture attacking to a base from a Chasm. They’re forced into building Mantisse/Fuze on a low credit map. Summed up, I believe Khral have a HUGE advantage here. I gave this map some props for being dynamic, as I think the main stage has the potential to be truly fun in a SVT / SVS / TVT war. The roads at the side should even come into play in those conflicts.
The map has a clean, classic look. Aesthetically this IS my favorite map from this competition. However, I wish that Zardecil had limited this map to SvT, or used mountains in the middle versus chasms. As released, I feel this score is appropriate.



Smash664 – A Cats Ass (Races: ALL)

30/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
8/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
7/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

40/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
15/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
15/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
15/20 (Timeliness)
7/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
8/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 90/100
Notes: Aesthetically, the map looks pleasing. The central core has a unique aesthetic, and I felt Smash664 made excellent use of the better aesthetic features of this tileset.
One thing that jumped out to me was the use of cities to ramp up income. CTF doesn’t allow neutral bases for this. I liked that Smash had this approach. The map is very dynamic with the split bases. This along with the need to build infantry to occupy your cities, varied attack vectors, as well as the central Neutral base is exactly what I had in mind when I started this contest… (6 months ago ). The scale of the map is noticeable – it’s quite big. A potential balance issue seems to be the size of the map potentially favoring Speeder/Marauder overall. In particular - Khral may be challenged to cover the middle neutral base. Despite this, this looks like a fun, dynamic CTF map, that with some balancing playtesting has the potential to be a truly excellent CTF map.


wookieontheweb – Frog Legs race CTF final (Races: ALL)

16/40 (Balance)
10/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
5/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
1/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

37/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
7/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
20/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
8/20 (Timeliness)
8/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
0/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 66/100
Notes: Somewhat obscured in the image, the neutral base is above the cities at the top, under the word “threat.” This is one of the few maps that I actually playtested. (Months ago). This map has a very unique feel to it, and honestly it’s a very thoughtful, particular scenario. Look closely at the map and notice the alternating colors on opposing sides. Players capture their mid-harbors, and then ‘race’ for the top mid harbor with their amphibians. Meanwhile, players can attempt to intervene in that race with land units.
Despite the fun, interesting concept, I didn’t get the feeling that this map would hold up particularly well in high level play. The close proximity of the harbors, along with the reefs strongly benefits the player who gets to strike first. Additionally, and perhaps most damningly, there isn’t a great deal of thought that a player can put into their builds. It felt to me like: amphibian, fastest land units, and go.
Again, my impression of this map is that it’s a lot of fun. If you haven’t played it, I highly recommend one go at it. That said, this contest is for a ‘ranked CTF’ map, and I feel that this map misses the mark on that goal.



Batteries – It’s a map where you fight (Races: SvS)

29/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
13/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
1/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

30/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
5/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
15/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
10/20 (Timeliness)
5/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
5/10 (Not a “race”)
0/0
0/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 69/100
Notes: The only map to restrict races within the competition. I was really excited to review this map, as I think that’s something that could help to balance out a CTF map. I was sad to see Battery and Fuze preloaded into the map. The mission statement at the start of this post was for this contest to provide a ‘ranked 1v1 map’ – so those units sorta torpedo that possibility. I knocked off some points under Unit Build Variety as a result of this, but otherwise the rankings don’t reflect that, since I didn’t explicity mention this elsewhere in my post.
As it stands - I don’t disapprove of the overall approach here, but between the SvS limitation coupled with the ‘on top of’ each other feel, I don’t expect much variety in builds. I think there’s clearly optimal builds and approaches, and since you’re mirroring races, I get the feeling that this map is gonna live and die with RNG and maybe player error.
On the plus side, I do believe both players have a chance to win. And, I would expect the matches on this map to move along briskly, and I don’t think either player would feel ‘cheated’ at the end of the slugfest. The map title is 100% appropriate. You load into this map, and you start punching the other player. The aesthetics of the map are pleasing, with the tileset being well suited to the abundance of aquatic areas.




Jeff79 – Aeschylus v2 (Races: ALL)

31/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
10/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
6/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

38/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
15/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
13/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
17/20 (Timeliness)
7/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
10/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 91/100
Notes: Jeff fairly took the initiative a while back and declared himself the winner. I’m excited to see what he brought to the table, to see how he stacks up! -- I’ll head back here after my review. You wait here, friend. .. OKAY, I am back. The first thing I did after looking at the map was go ahead and assign the full 15 points for “Dynamic.” The next thing that I did was smile to myself. There isn’t going to be an easy win on this map, for any race. There are MANY tactical options on this map. There are 4 attack vectors for each player, and there are 4 separate objectives. (3 cities and the neutral base). In the current iteration of CTF, any base capture causes the game to end. As a result, this map appears to me as a sudden death, tactical dream.
Now, I don’t think it’s perfect. I worry about Titans on this map. The terrain is very obstructed (a Jeff79 staple ). It’s very amphibian-centric in the naval areas, with a plethora of swamps and reefs. I do believe this could pose a potential problem for titans. As well as the challenges of getting mechas onto mountains / cities. I'm unsure how the 200 credits/turn will impact particular matchups, but I think this is also to Titans detriment.
That said, it’s still an excellent map. Titans shouldn’t be totally hapless here. The map is aesthetically quite pleasing - if not a little "busy". I particularly approve of the Ocean tile as a crowning jewel at the top. This is certainly one of the best maps submitted, and I would expect that with minimal balance testing, this map could enter the ranked pool and/or find its way into a tournament.


TheImpaler – The Dual Passage v2 (Races: ALL)

39/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
14/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
10/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

36/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
7/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
12/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
13/20 (Timeliness)
8/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
5/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 93/100
Notes: first impression: This map is different from the other maps, and I like it.
After reviewing the map, I like it a lot. I love how Khral swarmers will play so effectively in the city playground to the south. Meanwhile, maybe the north is a little more challenging for the Khral overall - but far from hopeless. The high-ish credit count I think plays into the map's archetype well. Players have freedom to buy the units they want, and should be able to map credible advances towards the Flag early, and often. Unit diversity and multiple build options are the #1 strength of this map.
The map looks pleasing. The snow tileset isn't always the most exciting, but then city tiles and Blues of the water splashed across the map give this overall a clean, classic look.
The two areas of conflict are well conceived and balanced. However, I don't find the map to be astonishingly dynamic. That is my biggest gripe, certainly. Overall, this map is excellent, and I am not convinced that it would need any additional balancing to enter the Ranked pool.

OmegaD – Maelstrom (Races: ALL)

30/40 (Balance)
14/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
9/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
7/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

30/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
8/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
12/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
17/20 (Timeliness)
10/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
7/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 82/100
Notes: This is one of the maps that I play tested back in the fall. I was concerned this map would play like a race, but left the play test feeling comfortable that it didn't. I remember enjoying the play test a lot, feeling the map allowed for tactical creativity. 

"Solid B" pretty well sums up this map in my estimation. It isn't the flashiest map. I don't find it to be very pretty to look at. I don't think it has that "classic" feel to it. But getting to those Flags tales planning, and thought. You've gotta balance your own capture attempt against stopping your opponents. In a lot of ways, this map is a "race," but since it forces some tough tactical decisions on the players, I didn't deduct heavily there.
I do think the middle is maybe too heavily congested, restricting builds somewhat. I consider that to be the maps biggest weakness. It is almost a necessity given the scale of the map, but I think the result is more of a 'scenario' than what I was truly hoping to see. All in all, it's a good map though. And if you're looking for a snappy CTF match you'll enjoy this one.


copeab - MadDash2 (Races: ALL)

35/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
15/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
5/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

26/40 (Enjoyability)
6/10 (Buildups)
5/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
15/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
12/20 (Timeliness)
10/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
2/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 78/100
Notes: For the uninitiated, this is the quintessential original CTF map. I remember that copeab made this map VERY early on after the CTF mode was released. In a lot of ways, it has stood the test of time. I have some particular gripes with it, but I think there's a lot to like here, too. 

Let's start out with what I didn't like: this map is either a race or a buildup. You're consistently getting one or the other, depending on matchup. If that's your thing, you'll LOVE this map. (Along those lines, this map is snappy - matches definitely aren't gonna last too long!). Personally, I don't love buildups, and I don't like races. So, this is a swing and a miss for me. The map is not very dynamic in nature.
I also knocked some points off for unit build variety. There are some options, but with the 'race' aspect players have some choices pre-made for them (assuming they don't want to lose round 3-4). Mid-late game the tactical options can open up SOMEWHAT, but then you're limited by terrain/scale of the map. It's a tough balance.
What I like: the "classic" feel this map has. It's clean, smooth, and there aren't any tricks or surprises. Having played this one a few times, and talked to others who play it, I do believe it's well balanced. This is not a small accomplishment, and I believe answers the question of why this map has been around so long. For a lot of people, this is an exceptional CTF map. It isn't my cup of tea, and I know this isn't news to copeab. :p
Prime Carrot – CTF Map, sHROOMS eDITION (Races: ALL)

26/40 (Balance)
10/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
9/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
7/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

33/40 (Enjoyability)
10/10 (Buildups)
10/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
13/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
16/20 (Timeliness)
9/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
7/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 80/100
Notes: First impression: "I don't know about this." Let's take a closer look, and see what pops out.
Unforgiving I think would be the theme for this map. 250 starting credits, 150 a turn thereafter. Brutal stuff, especially in a 'first cap wins' scenario. I have to applaud Carrot for the overall layout. He manages to provide areas for many different unit types to shine. The central base is easily accessible, but by that same virtue likely difficult to capture very early on. This map toes that line dangerously.
For having chosen the Mars tileset, AND including bridges, this map actually looks very nice. For using Mars I actually added an extra point there above my initial review.
Honestly, I don't have much else to say about this map. I get the feeling that it *could* be fine balance wise. But without having played it, those sparse credits and lack of a more dynamic layout just make me feel like this is a "B" map.

angkor (the artist formerly known as Angkor) – 006 EXPLORATION (Races: ALL)

36/40 (Balance)
15/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
12/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
9/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

30/40 (Enjoyability)
7/10 (Buildups)
10/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
13/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)
17/20 (Timeliness)
8/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
9/10 (Not a “race”)
5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 88/100
Notes: This is one of the last two maps I’m reviewing, and I know it’s a contender for the top spot. An in depth review left me with mixed feelings, and an overall sense that this map could be so much more.

I appreciate the scale of the map. It isn’t huge, but it’s big enough that players won’t feel cramped. The map also looks quite nice. It’s got clean, smooth lines, and the blues on the edges and in the center make this map look sort of like a jewel. It’s pleasing to look at.

Angkor opted for the ‘easily accessible’ Flag, which is certainly fine by me. Any race has a mere 2 turns to middle with infantry, and there is barely a unit in the game that can’t impact a possible capture attempt there. It’s a solid design, with the chasms ensuring that units built up front won’t immediately be pummeled. Angkor also made use of the ramping income via cities – which I certainly appreciate. The central harbors I think are a very unique piece of this map. Capturing one of those could provide a spectular boost to a player, and I think it provides a very interesting tactical dynamic to this map.

Speaking of dynamics, you’ll notice I knocked 5 points off in that category. Unfortunately, to get to one of those side bases would require a very spectacular effort by one of the involved combatants. I can’t see it happening. I feel that this was a missed opportunity – if one of those bases had been moved up a hex, maybe towards the edge as well, then all of a sudden you’d have 3 points of engagement instead of just one point of engagement. This, and the potential for long build-ups, were my only issues with this map, and the only thing keeping this map from contention with the top overall spot. Despite this, I do feel this map is ranked-ready, and would not have players walking away feeling cheated by their time on the map.


J016 – CTF in the war 7 (Races: ALL)

26/40 (Balance)
12/15 (Access to bases/cities/ AND favorable terrain based upon possible player/race combos)
7/15 (Race Balance, P1/P2 Balance)
7/10 (Unit Build variety [Map requires specific units for success])

32/40 (Enjoyability)
7/10 (Buildups)
13/15 (Map is “Dynamic”)
12/15 (Theme / Aesthetics)

15/20 (Timeliness)
7/10 (Expected rounds for game – shooting for 12-25)
6/10 (Not a “race”)

5/0
5/0 (All Races allowed)
TOTAL: 79/100

Notes: My last review. Let me say – I really wanted to love this map. I tried to come up with some reasons to justify the flaws that I saw. But in the end, I’ve gotta call a duck a duck.

So, what did I see that I didn’t love? Pretty simple – the scale of the map is huge, the credits/turn is very low, and the center base is much easier for Sapiens to access than the other two races. (Marauder / Marine should really dominate the rush to the center). Speeders would do fine there as well, and so would underlings.. But bringing along swarmers and mechas could be painful. I think there’s some real balance concerns, in part due to the low credit counts, but also just generally due to the layout of the map.

I like the attempt at making a dynamic map. There are many possible attack vectors here. Problem is, again, with such low credits players essentially HAVE to focus on the middle. For a very long time before there’d be enough left to try to make a move at a side base.

The map looks very nice, making nice use of the harbors and blues of the original tile set. It isn’t my favorite map, but it certainly doesn’t invoke any wretching. I think, if you land the right matchup (SvS, TvT, maybe TvS) on this map, you could certainly have a good time playing this as a longer-length unranked game. But I think to have contended for a win in this challenge, it would’ve needed changes to the layout, credits, and maybe scale.
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