News | Forum | People | FAQ | Links | Search | Register | Log in
Thought 2 - The Increasing Purposelessness Of Mapping.
Perhaps not of that much relevance to this particular forum but still perhaps of interest. Probably applies more to SP than DM (think on that?)

Is custom mapping becoming increasingly pointless as games progress? Why - because game mapping is generally getting more spectacular, more impressive, more specifically themed and better executing those themes. In short game mapping and the associated technology could be leaving custom mapping behind. After all what`s the point in creating - or, more importantly, playing - a custom map for a game that`s already full of great maps.

For example, take Quake. Good in-game maps at the time, but it was and still is a piece of piss to make vastly better maps even quite soon after the game`s release (and that`s bearing in mind how new true 3D mapping was in those days). No doubt the game`s open-ended themes helped.

On the other hand, take, say, RTCW. Some bloody great maps with fairly specific styles. It seems to me it would be pretty hard to beat those maps at their own game. Unless one is to create entirely new themes (again, harder than before due to increased quality demands), it would seem quite purposeless to create something that`s unlikely to be better than what`s already there.

This is, I think, an increasing trend with games too. Personally, a lot of older (or cruder, e.g. DKT) games have given me much mapping inspiration (yes, JUST inspiration), while newer games have often have such good maps, I can`t think of anything worth adding that they aren`t already doing.

First | Previous | Next | Last
Oh Well 
i"m referring to wazats post (if multiple just go figure which one i mean). he says that it wont be a one man job no more.

he"s got a good point. prolly will be more difficult to start off. but now most of us (you) often use each others textures or do joint maps and stuff so i think all is not lost.

on the subject of the official maps being worse than "aftermarket" stuff, well isnt that so with all things. like getting your new pc and bolting a better fan. developers have limited time and there are maybe 25 employed compared to 6 zillion vondurs, ztn, speedy <add your name here> etc.

now, the problem is when you are a newbie and try to compete with BIG stuff like nehahra or anything from the likes of neil manke or whoever you particularly rate. 
but it pales in comparison to the replay value of a good deathmatch

You should take a visit to the Speed Demos Archive:

i think they may view things slightly differently to you. ;)

In short, in my opinion, neither SP or DM is "inherently" more replayable than the other. It simply depends on which gameplay style (as they are radically different, really), you prefer. 
SP lifespan is neccessarily limited. Just like a book or a movie, when you've been through it once you know how it ends. That's never been a restriction on authors or moviemakers of course :P And people do re-read something simply for the pleasure of a classic, like LotR or Dune.
But that does bode well for custom SP because, especially given that custom material is free, it can feed the players' hunger for more of the same experience without the fore-knowledge of how it turns out. Sort of like a TV spinoff series if I may continue the analogy. No? Oh, suit yourself. 
I Think I'll Start Using Some Different Icons 
6 zillion vondurs

that sounds like the title for a map... 
Understood. But the fact remains that SP is a different animal than DM. In SP, different rules (such as speedrunning) must be created to enjoy the same map. In deathmatch, those differences are automatic as your opponent changes and adapts to you, and you to him.

Multiplayer is walking variety, while sp requires flavoring after the first bite. 
The reason that newer games don't have maps better than the original game is not that the newer games are used to their full potential, but instead it is because the mapping community is so divided. Look; how many maps were released for FAKK2, eh? Or Serious Sam? Or NOLF1/2? JK2? Elite Force? Now compare with Quake/Quake 3/Unreal/HL. See the difference? There are or were perhaps tens of thousands of mappers for those combined games, but perhaps only a few hundred for FAKK2, SS1/2, NOLF1/2, JK2, and Elite Force. With so few mappers, it's no surprise that there was no notable release. All the mappers go for the big games where they can congregate with fellow mappers and where people will play their maps.

The only exception perhaps is Jedi Knight 2 or perhaps Serious Sam 2; you might be able to find some maps here that surpass those in the original game since neither shipped with astounding maps. And considering the pure horror value of most of the Jedi Knight 2 maps, it would not take much for a map to surpass it in both visuals and gameplay.

Also, see metlslime's post. Custom mappers have lots of time and can polish it until it's perfect, which is why we're not seeing custom mapper quality stuff even from companies that hire custom mappers. 
That Rtcw Map Set 
I talked about before shamb, that is a good example of maps (well after the first intro one anyway) that are on par with the game`s more decent maps.

Check out the screenshots to get an idea : 
Lol Kell 
bad example... 
Re: Kell 
Let me get this straight:
so what is being said is that in the future mappers will no longer create the art work, but rather in a sense, simply arrange it? 
What Do You Do Nowadays.... 
...with textures and entities? 
I dont think so, apart from level 1, IMHO the rest is actually pretty good even if tef didnt react very well to criticism.

And IMHO not *all* the levels in RTCW were that crash hot anyway, there were some pretty average ones in there too. So compared to them and the above average stuff, I think tefs set holds up. 
Re: Nb 
my point wasn#t to argue it. just noting a similarity. 
Err, Yes 
nitin pretty much beat me to it, but I'll say it anyway.

I was not impressed with RtCW as a whole, let alone with the maps. Perhaps the reason people are not inspired to make great maps for it is not because everything good was already done, but instead because there was nothing good to make from it.

Personally, I found RtCW very uninspiring. There wasn't much worth doing with the given textures and themes, and what was worth doing was done in the game. Plus, the monsters were in three distinct categories that would not go well together in a single map, which further limited the gameplay situations that were possible. This was of course all brought up at the time the game was released, but if the game had shipped with decent monsters then I would have been tempted to make a map for it. I'd do it even if the theme had been done before, cause the gameplay is the most important factor, right? 
Ho hum. Am I the only person who thought RTCW was the bollocks instead of just bollocks?? For playing, not mapping, that is. Sure the gameplay style was fairly old school but the graphics, settings, maps, variety, cut-scenes, and general atmosphere....well I liked them =).

But yes maybe to a certain extent (gives ground grudgingly here) the lack of mapping inspiration was more due to game specificity rather than game map quality (although I have few complaints with the latter). 
I remembered what I was saying about this...

Reasons why DM mapping has more potential than SP mapping in games with great in-game maps already:

1. Easier to make a good DM map than a good SP map (assuming you have a clue about DM gameplay). Not least because they are generally smaller, simpler, and don`t use monsters.

2. Because people play DM levels time after time there`s likely to be more interest as they`ll get old quicker (in theory at least).

3. I`m sure there`s something else I`ll mention later...

Yes of course I`m aware that games increasingly have complex teamplay modes or no MP modes at all... 
Yes of course I`m aware that games increasingly have complex teamplay modes or no MP modes at all...

Or no SP at all. 
Dm Vs Sp 
2. Because people play DM levels time after time theres likely to be more interest as theyll get old quicker (in theory at least).

Uhm.... sp maps get old quicker. A good dm map never gets old wich is one of the major reasons many custom mappers are frustrated because its so hopeless to get their maps played online. 
its because ass-holes still play dm4 or whatever. no offence to id but some people have no imagination... 
dm4, q2dm1, de_dust, q3dm17

I think I can say with a great degree of certainty that these four maps account for more playercount/matches than all the custom maps for their respective games combined.

Sad, isn't it? 
I think you`re missing the point I`m making. I`m guessing that most SP players play the game SP maps and move on. They don`t play them enough to get bored with them. While DM players don`t play the DM maps and move on, they play them time after time. Thus they can get bored playing them, thus there is more potential for DM maps being needed.

Basically I`m theorising more demand for DM maps given the way DM is played (over and over again) compared to SP (usually once). It doesn`t necessarily work like this in practise as DM players seem to have a very high boredom threshold... 
I've experienced recently how most mappers seem to only want to play Aerowalk or Ultrav. Great maps or not, playing these two maps over and over is no different than playing solely dm4 and dm6.

Also, I think Shambler is probably right about the masses of people. I think the custom map people are probably almost the exact opposite, though. At least I am. I crave new Q1SP adventures, but only play the same DM maps over and over again. To be honest, though, I do like to try lots of different DM maps; especially since there are so many great ones out there. But I usually go back to a few perfect or nearly perfect maps just because they're fun. 
Mapping As We Know It Has Changed Forever... 
in the good old days, it was natural that a "mapper" creates both geometry and gameplay. Nowadays (in up & coming commercial games), those tasks are entirely seperated, you have people making gameplay and _placing_ geometry, but they rely on a vast army or artists to supply them with cool geometry.

You, as a hobbyist, don't have that army, so you have no chance whatsoever to make anything remotely competitive. Your only chance is to do only the gameplay side and rely on geometry that came with the game. But this results in levels that, while maybe fun, just feel exactly like some levels in the game. So in short your opportunity for being creative is decimated.

So what do you do? some choices:
- you stop mapping, and do something more worthwhile, like coding ;)
- you are happy to just do entity and geometry placement
- you are happy to map for ancient engines

the 4th option some of you may think of, which sound like "collect a team of skilled artists on the net to create stuff for you" is not an option, if you think it is, you are incredibly naive (or incredibly lucky to be part of the 1 out of 1000000 teams that actually gets something done). 
but what if you dont have ten people in the team, but just 2 or 3? that would drastically up your chances. 
First | Previous | Next | Last
You must be logged in to post in this thread.
Website copyright © 2002-2023 John Fitzgibbons. All posts are copyright their respective authors.