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View Full Version : What makes a great MP map?


Hubris
06-30-2002, 12:54 AM
Figured I'd throw out some mapping philosophy here, ain't seen any of these threads here yet, just all technique. Though this is just as important. I've seen some technically brilliant maps that just pooped all over the gameplay. I'm curious as to peoples opinions.

For me, speaking about gameplay the third dimension in gameplay and good use of it is very important, in fact defining.

In CTF I'd argue that streets is a far superior map to Bespin, as though Bespin gives the illusion of being very three dimensional, Streets actually has 3d gameplay which Bespin lacks in, I'd say Garrison is superior to temple for the same reason, that there are multiple planes of engagement and many degrees therein.

In CTF I've also found that multiple paths of engagement that cross over is very important as well, Streets has it in buttloads as most of the map is open, Bespin does it well too, Temple has far too defined of engagement paths, where once you commit to an approach, there isn't another variance from that for hundreds of feet.

FFAs there's only two factors in my opinion, which break down to one principal: centralized combat. I positively loathe the FFAs that have weapons and ammo/bacta/shields spread out all over the map, encouraging one on one fights. The whole idea, to me, of an FFA is furballs and dealing with having four people around you who all wanna kill you. Having things spread out also seems to encourage camping of power weapons on opposite ends of the map, which again, makes for poor gameplay.

Duels... to be honest, I've found the best duel maps are square (Squarish in design, not necessarily a four walled room. :p) complemented by a single large obstacle, or several smaller obstacles. Seems like the more complex folks get with duel maps, the more it takes away from the central focus, the duel itself.

What are people's opinions?

Wes Marrakesh
06-30-2002, 01:09 AM
Hmmm....
I agree on you in CTF although fewer, more defined routes make the make more challenging and require more teamplay, while Streets easily lets one or two people slip of and bag the flag.

In FFA, the weapons need to be spread out, because what would happen if the rocket launcher was in the center of the biggest fur-ball area? It would turn into king-of-the-rocket launcher, and Jedi master does king-of-the-item much better. Spread weapons and larger maps allow more people, in essence encouraging bigger furballs.

I agree with you on duels.
'Nuff said.

Hubris
06-30-2002, 01:15 AM
Originally posted by Wes Marrakesh
Hmmm....
I agree on you in CTF although fewer, more defined routes make the make more challenging and require more teamplay, while Streets easily lets one or two people slip of and bag the flag.

In FFA, the weapons need to be spread out, because what would happen if the rocket launcher was in the center of the biggest fur-ball area? It would turn into king-of-the-rocket launcher, and Jedi master does king-of-the-item much better. Spread weapons and larger maps allow more people, in essence encouraging bigger furballs.

I agree with you on duels.
'Nuff said.

Heh, I actually like FFAs like that, like FFA_Yavin, I've seen a few polls on favorite maps, and Yavin seems to always be at the top of the list I think the centralized rocket launcher has to do with that. It makes for fast and furious gameplay, and no one is ever the king of the rocket launcher, I mean you get three shots, six if you get lucky and get an ammo spawn. :p

Emon
06-30-2002, 02:21 AM
For a FFA map, I'd have to say good flow is everything. Linear maps for any MP, especially FFA, are a nightmare. There should be at least 2 ways in and out of each main area. A level should flow well according to how you want it to. Perhaps slower flow for sabers, faster for guns. Take the Morpheus level for JK. It's many jump pads give it a very unique flow. You have to constantly keep moving, otherwise you're dead.

Also, lighting is important. Sure, very dark and moody atmospheres may be awesome for SP, but in MP, you gotta be able to see what you're fragging!

Item placement is also important. Poor item placement can be sparse or too much. Too much would be like having the repeater and 10 ammo packs for it in one area. Not enough would be having the rocket launcher with no other ammo (I'd say 2-3 packs for this, since ammo is only 3 per pickup). Also, items shouldn't be just on shelves or in single rooms. That's more fitted for SP, IMO, like having a weapon cache or a recharge station of some sort. Author's shouldn't be discouraged to leave shield and health power ups laying up and down hallways. For the completed map, you shouldn't be running out of ammo very fast, you shouldn't have to hunt for items but they shouldn't always be under your feet.

winner_rex
06-30-2002, 12:47 PM
My 2 cents:
As you may or may not know, I made the Naboo Courtyard map.
At JO maps.com, many people just look at the screenshots and rate it based on looks. While this may not seem fair, it makes sense. Lightsabers look cool anywhere, but the cooler the surroundings, the better the experience.
In equation form:

Cool looking + Catwalks= instant success.

I personally have yet to thoroughly find a server running my map, much less really play it on a server, but somehow it got a ~9.5 at JOmaps. Like I said, if it looks cool, they will like it.

ioshee
03-18-2003, 11:43 AM
I agree about making ffa maps being non-linear. If you have a map that is only used for saber challenge with other humans in a civilized manner then dead end rooms are fine. But for any decent bot support you have to have good clean ways for the bots to keep moving if nobody is in the room. It looks silly if a bot just walks into a dead end room, does a circle and then backtracks down the hall it entered by.

In ctf I like the idea of defenders being nervous about where the enemy is coming from. To me that means having a lot of routes to the flag. I love asymmetrical ctf maps too. It seems harder for a mapper to make two sides of a map different and yet equal, but it seems so cool when the map is not just a mirror image with color markers for you to tell where you are.

I agree about duel maps too. The focus should be on the duel, and obstacles make if even more fun (especially when you can wall walk on them:D)

This is a cool idea for a thread. I hope it gets more posts (but donít make it stick because I always skip over those.)

shukrallah
03-18-2003, 08:25 PM
i think it all depends on what u like, i like outdoor dark gloomy maps, sadly u can t put rain in MP but i also like high tech, imperial type maps, with lots of detail......

with free for all, maybe it shouldnt be so big, if all your going to do is duel, then all u need is one or two big rooms...... like the jedicouncle gc map, its a nice map, but people mostly only use the room with the stairs, the other rooms are just there, they are used from time to time, but not as much as the 1st room, but this map is popular.......but i guess it depends on who u are playing with.....