eventually I made more maps for Armada 2 than anyone else, means 70+.
In my mind when you make a good multiplayer map, you have to keep the following in mind:
- Do you create a map, in order to make a good map or do you just want credits. Sad but true, most maps are just clones. Eventually 1 asteroid got moved a bit. Thats why there are 1000 wasup maps, that most of the time are the same.
- You need to know how the game is played online. Most maps dont keep the race inbalances in mind. For example if every ressource is far away Federation with its defiants dominates the game. If every player has two Class D and two Dilithium Moons Species has an huge advantage. If every Player has only a planet M and a Dil, Romulan has an huge advantage over most races.
- Which brings me to the next point. Don t care how a map looks, care how it plays. If it plays well and looks good at the same time its cool.
- Be creative, do something new, something different. Only edit existing stuff when you improve it, not just to change it.
- A starting position shouldnt give you an advantage.
- Should the map be a rush map or a teching map? The more aspects of the gameplay make sense on your map, the better it is.
- If the map is overloaded it might lag online. Once again care about gameplay not about how it looks.
Hey trip, how are you doing? :)
One thing that maps really need to move away from is the wassup style maps, because they simply aren't fun. The game begins and ends before you can do anything interesting, and there is only really one way of winning them. Namely, rushing. Armada's so boring to play online these days.
If you give a much smaller amount of resources at the start like a dil moon and a few class K planets spread out as I did in the map included in the Upgrade Project releases called A2Uffa.
That style of map strongly encourages spreading out by not giving you all the resources you need at the start location, so as a result battles are more about low intensity fights spread out across the map for resource points rather than one big bunker assault. Everybody I have got to play that map online has agreed its more fun that way.
Personally I take another route with map making. I prefer maps that are arranged somewhat realistically in terms of planets, solar bodies etc. You can still make it balanced, since system formation usually follows the pattern of small, rocky planetoids near the star (hotzone), followed by larger planets (biozone), then gas giants (far edge of the biozone and beginning of the coldzone) and then small icy rocky planetoids at the far edge (coldzone). Therefore with 2 players, or 2 teams, you can have the start positions set to the far ends of the system, with an incentive to try and take the resource rich planets in the biozone. Also, the central planets usually have more moons (look at jupiter) therefore its an even greater incentive, since there will be more dilithium moons towards the centre of the map compared to the edges.
One thing that maps really need to move away from is the wassup style maps, because they simply aren't fun. [/quote]
Busy with my clan and real life....
[quote=Freyr;4354914] One thing that maps really need to move away from is the wassup style maps, because they simply aren't fun.
At the end of the day wasup maps are a factor why armada 2s online community is small these days. Basically you can be very sucessful spamming one type of ship. In some cases you need a few turrets as well. Then you go and stop the enemy advanced or kill his ressources. But thats it.
You wont see interesting tactical combinations like Fusion cube and gemini effect (hehe) or diamond remodulation and computer takeover vs species...
And you wont see warbirds or sovereigns or much teching in general...
But we wont change that. The thing is wasup was the tournament map for gamespy tournaments, and now every "wannabe" and "me2" plays only wasup to feel superior. They dont think about it, they just want to be "Pro" which is kinda ironic if you play a game with armada 2s esports relevance.
Btw, Ill check out that "A2Uffa" map.
Squire James;4355294I prefer maps that are arranged somewhat realistically in terms of planets, solar bodies etc.
I'm of the same school of thought-- nothing annoys me more than a nebula that runs in a straight line intersecting at a perpendicular with another type of nebula.
Yes, I agree, playing style needs to be respected, but the "tic tac toe" types of maps in which everything is absolutely and hyper-precisely symmetrical are part of the reason I never got into playing online as much. For me A2 is as much about the challenge of thinking how to accomplish the victory as it is about fighting for it.
I think these are the types of maps Freyr is referring to, where perfect balance means static, setpiece tactics rather than asymmetrical warfare, sometimes mass rush, sometimes more guerrilla, sometimes diversionary, and most times small and vicious battles rather than massed fleet assault time after time. If I want to play like that, I'll do it against the AI. Or in a game of chess.
But SquireJames raises an all-too-valid point: the systems that A2 is fought over are conceptually still organically formed and chaotically dispersed. Sure, an appropriate balance needs to be struck, but as a player I'll walk away from a map that feels like a game map instead of like a star map.
Something my LAN group does is base A2 maps on actual maps. We have several Multi-player A2 maps based on maps of historical battles, such as Chickamauga, GA. These maps are very far from fair and not even close to symmetrical. Our Battle of Gazala map is deliberately designed to be as unfair as we can make it. I think to a lot of newer or beginning mappers, fair equates to giving each player maximum resources, neatly packaged right next to a start point. To me, balance does not mean that every player starts with a Class M planet. Player One may start in a very defensible area with very limited resources while Player Four has an embarrassment of riches but begins play smack in the middle of the map. Something else very few people consider when designing a map is the story behind it. The games or missions one plays the most have the best story elements. I have always believed a good story will make up to a large extent for bad graphics or poor object placement. It should not be a crutch or excuse however.
When I create maps (something I've not done in a LONG time) I make them completely random. No symetrical positions, just random placements of everything. I usually start with the starting positions (I always make eight player maps too), and again, even with the starting positions, it is random placements. I also like a lot of Asteroids and Nebula. I don't like wide open maps too much.
Don't forget, we are talking about multiplayer maps :P
It's hard to balance map that arent symmetrical and stuff. But if the positioning works out and seems balanced these maps are the most fun to play. :9
Well, as long as you place the same amount of moons, and the same amount of planets around a starting location, then I don't see a problem. ;) I just don't like symmetrical maps, it wouldn't be symmetrical if you went up to space you know. :P
Tycoon;4358311I just don't like symmetrical maps, it wouldn't be symmetrical if you went up to space you know. :P
Oh well, maybe SOMEWHERE in the universe it may be like that :D