[RA] The Official Map Pool - collaboration thread

Contributions, suggestions, discussion and feedback.

Discussion about the game and its default mods.
User avatar
SoScared
Posts: 1116
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:16 pm
Location: Oslo
Contact:

[RA] The Official Map Pool - collaboration thread

Post by SoScared » Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:28 pm

So recently, I've posted a couple of issues regarding in and outs in regards to the official map pool after the request of PChote (Sleipnir). But in for a penny, in for a pound, I've boldly thrown the entire collection of maps up in the air in hopes of further polishing and making the map pool more appealing overall.

First the in- and out issues:

The official map pool. Out with the old...
https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10708

The official map pool. ...in with the new.
https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10710

Pretty straight forward, these issues will likely determine what maps will be in and out with the next release. You should participate in the issue if you feel like it.

Then there's the rest of the map pool that likely stay put. OpenRA's map chooser and map pool plays a big part on the game's look and feel, especially for new players. It ought to stand out as playable, good looking and as fresh as possible:

The official map pool. Altering existing maps.
https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10718

Here is an issue that would benefit a lot from participation from the community at large. The more activity and reviews that follows the altered maps the more likely they will find their way into the official map pool for the next release. The devs are busy as hell working the client 24/7 so it's gonna be up to us if we want get additional work done here. You should consider to look into the map pool and the posted map list on Github and see what more that can be done with them - also contribute with your map versions for maps you believe needs some work.

At minimum I hope you at least would look over the maps listed below ('Completed maps seeking pull requests), review them and give some constructive feedback!



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Altered maps, submitted on Github seeking discussion/PR:

Dec.27.2015 - Singles (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/pull/10301
Dec.31.2015 - Keep off the Grass 2 (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/pull/10347
Jan.1.2016 - Man to Man (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/pull/10312
Feb.21.2016 - Encounter (6p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10798
Feb.25.2016 - Chokepoint (4p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10833
Mar.15.2016 - Sidestep (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10927
Mar.15.2016 - Forest Path (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10928

*I'll slowly be submitting new issues but starting with maps that are the most straightforward and has the less impact on the map style.
Last edited by SoScared on Tue Mar 15, 2016 3:17 pm, edited 15 times in total.

noobmapmaker
Posts: 1086
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:59 am

Post by noobmapmaker » Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:07 pm

Will take a look into the maps ASAP, nice work sofar!

* seeing that many others already help (and have more knowledge on what makes a map worthy to be official) I will not go through them. Will focus on signing up to the forums to tell about OpenRA as soon as 5Aces has finished the tournament announcement.
Last edited by noobmapmaker on Wed Feb 17, 2016 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Playlist with ALL games of the Dark Tournament Youtube.com/CorrodeCasts
Consider supporting OpenRA by setting a bounty or by donating for a server

Murto the Ray
Posts: 486
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 4:34 pm

Post by Murto the Ray » Wed Feb 17, 2016 4:07 pm

I agree that the map pool needs a rework, a lot of the maps aren't balanced or competitive which is something i believe OpenRA needs to promote.

My personal map extermination list would look like this:

Keep:
  • Forest Path
  • Ore Lord
  • Sidestep
  • Barracuda
  • East vs West
  • Equal opportunity
  • Mad Science
  • Tournament Island
  • Asymmetric Battle
  • Bombardment Islands
  • Cold Front
  • Doughnut
  • Haos Ridges
  • Snow Town
  • Great Sahara
  • Pressure
  • Engagement
  • Chaos Canyon
Alter:
  • Singles(As has already been done)
  • Doubles(As has already been done)
  • Keep Off The Grass 2(As has already been done)
  • Man to Man(As has already been done but move oil derricks to outer paths instead of middle)
  • Artic Triangle Affair(Make starting ore equidistant from spawns and make room for all player's MCVs in middle)
  • First Come, First Served(widen center passage to encourage larger armies)
  • Puddles Redux(take ore from near middle and place nearer starting positions)
  • Tabula Rasa(Make oil derrick valley entrance equal in size for both sides)
  • Vegetation(Widen gap between players and add small gap where walls join with the outer wall)
Get rid of:
  • Bloody Delta(Imbalanced, encourages turtling at the bridge chokepoint, player b's front is more spread than player a's)
  • Burlesca(Too small, encourages turtling)
  • Styrian Mountains(Imbalanced, would need to be completely reworked to be competitive)
  • Snowy Ridge(Encourages Turtling, arty biased)
  • Bad Neighbours, Calm Before the Storm, Chokepoint, Contact, Ghost Town, Pearly Wastelands(The same map but
    in different sizes and slight variants, should be replaces with a single well made map of the same design)
  • Island Hoppers(Islands and ore too little to sustain players)
  • Temperal(Ore Grossly imbalanced)
  • Poland Raid(Imbalanced in every way)
  • Encounter(Usually ends up in a stalemate which is resolved by a nuke or other tech powers)
  • Marooned II(Imbalanced ore distribution, very low eco)
  • Seaside 2 (Isnt very popular due to extremely low ore.)
  • Snowy Island(Imbalanced map)
  • Suffrage(Its a low eco 3v3 doubles, could do with being bigger, with more ore and passages)
  • Synergy(Game ends 5 minutes in with the initial base move)
  • A Path Beyond(Imbalanced)
  • All Connected(Stalemates & base pushing)
  • Blitzkrieg(Isnt played much, pretty chokey, stalemates often)
  • Breakpoint(Encourages base pushing and can end within 5 mins like synergy)
  • Regeneration Basin(Way too much ore, just becomes a spamfest)
  • Other large maps that havent been mentioned(Generally imbalanced or dont play out well)
Additions
  • What SoScared said
Im going to try and rebalance a few maps in the meantime, will post results.

noobmapmaker
Posts: 1086
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:59 am

Post by noobmapmaker » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:09 pm

Imo the maps do not all need to be perfectly balanced. Styrian Mountains for example probably is imbalanced as hell, but it's a good looking map that gives alot of variety in games.

I too think that a good set of balanced maps will be a big plus for OpenRA and may attract more competitive players. But let's not forget the large amateurplayerbase who's games do not get decide by small edges. It would be ashame if a lot of really fun maps would be deleted from the official mappool and we are stuck with only symmetrical tournamentmaps.
Playlist with ALL games of the Dark Tournament Youtube.com/CorrodeCasts
Consider supporting OpenRA by setting a bounty or by donating for a server

noobmapmaker
Posts: 1086
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:59 am

Post by noobmapmaker » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:32 pm

I see in the github another Tab is mentioned ("classic"). That would be a great addition imo. It would allow for a tab with Tournamentmaps and a Tab with official Fun maps and a Tab with personal maps.
Playlist with ALL games of the Dark Tournament Youtube.com/CorrodeCasts
Consider supporting OpenRA by setting a bounty or by donating for a server

winftw
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue May 05, 2015 10:24 am

Post by winftw » Wed Feb 17, 2016 7:20 pm

My #1 problem with the map pool is that its too small. Most of the maps totally suck, leaving me with only few I want to play. And theres hardly any 1v1 maps to start with. I don't usually bother finding and installing custom maps as I play on a bunch of different computers so I have to put up with what's bundled by default.

@Murto: I like some of your proposed removals. Such as suffrage and pearly wasteland. These 2 are good when played as 1v1.

How about setting a goal of say, finding 100 top quality maps?
Twenty 1v1 maps, twenty 2v2 maps, twenty 3v3 maps, twenty 4v4 maps, ten 5v5 maps and ten minigames.

OpenRA resource centre has more maps than anyone ever wants to play, obviously there are 100 release-quality maps to be found. Just need some vote.

noobmapmaker
Posts: 1086
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:59 am

Post by noobmapmaker » Wed Feb 17, 2016 7:35 pm

Another thing: lately I discovered that the ore/gold mines are actors like any other. This means that they can be "owned" by spawns.

If you create a map and you want it to be suited for 1v1 and 2v2 (and maybe even 3v3), you can let spawns own the ore/goldmines. This results in ore/goldmines not appearing when the spawn isn't filled by a player.

Hope I explained it clearly, but it's a small trick that allows mapmakers to make the oresupply suit the number of players.
Playlist with ALL games of the Dark Tournament Youtube.com/CorrodeCasts
Consider supporting OpenRA by setting a bounty or by donating for a server

User avatar
SoScared
Posts: 1116
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:16 pm
Location: Oslo
Contact:

Post by SoScared » Wed Feb 17, 2016 8:13 pm

noobmapmaker wrote: Imo the maps do not all need to be perfectly balanced. Styrian Mountains for example probably is imbalanced as hell, but it's a good looking map that gives alot of variety in games.

I too think that a good set of balanced maps will be a big plus for OpenRA and may attract more competitive players. But let's not forget the large amateurplayerbase who's games do not get decide by small edges. It would be ashame if a lot of really fun maps would be deleted from the official mappool and we are stuck with only symmetrical tournamentmaps.
Agreed. We should allow for some natural looking maps. We need to put a clear wedge in between competetive symmetry maps and natural looking maps for casual play. Let's try to get rid of the in-betweens.

Bloody Delta, Temperal, Caffeinated are examples of maps that are obviously unbalanced but look ok, and should be treated/altered as such.
Last edited by SoScared on Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
SoScared
Posts: 1116
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:16 pm
Location: Oslo
Contact:

Post by SoScared » Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:24 pm

Murto the Ray wrote: Alter:
  • Singles(As has already been done)
  • Doubles(As has already been done)
  • Keep Off The Grass 2(As has already been done)
  • Man to Man(As has already been done but move oil derricks to outer paths instead of middle)
  • Artic Triangle Affair(Make starting ore equidistant from spawns and make room for all player's MCVs in middle)
  • First Come, First Served(widen center passage to encourage larger armies)
  • Puddles Redux(take ore from near middle and place nearer starting positions)
  • Tabula Rasa(Make oil derrick valley entrance equal in size for both sides)
  • Vegetation(Widen gap between players and add small gap where walls join with the outer wall)
Great suggestions in there! Btw Man to Man has been altered, I provided the wrong link in the list: Man to Man reworked. I'll integrate your list to the issue Wednesday/Thursday.

At some point, we'll start taking the github rework list and create a seperate github issues for each map, a few at a time. Might be some work but it's more likely to get the changes through with a final review/discussion focused single maps than unloading the whole batch for review.

If and when all of this has been done (crossing fingers before next release) the official map pool's standard will go through the roof and will help to bring forth new great maps from map makers. The official map pool should then be in constant competition with custom maps to ensure its' health and encourage creativity.

Mo
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:40 pm

Post by Mo » Wed Feb 17, 2016 11:29 pm

What about this map by Raymondo?
It's quite fun.

http://resource.openra.net/maps/8564

noobmapmaker
Posts: 1086
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:59 am

Post by noobmapmaker » Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:04 pm

Can anyone sum up what a map needs to be truly fit for competition?

- Exact symmetry*
- Equal acces to resources
- ?

* well... 100% symmetry is hard and boring, but how symmetrical does it needs to be make it suited for tournaments?
Playlist with ALL games of the Dark Tournament Youtube.com/CorrodeCasts
Consider supporting OpenRA by setting a bounty or by donating for a server

Murto the Ray
Posts: 486
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 4:34 pm

Post by Murto the Ray » Thu Feb 18, 2016 3:05 pm

A good map should have at least 1 expansion area IMO. There should also be a mix of large and small passages for large armies and small forces.

klaas
Posts: 208
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2013 9:38 am

Post by klaas » Fri Feb 19, 2016 8:29 am

Although I agree with Murto on how to make a good competitive map, we should not forget that many new players like to have a map with a single entry to their base, and enough ore around their primary, so they can easily defend their base. It may not result in the most interesting games, but many casual players prefer this. Hence the popularity of maps like "doubles" and "great divide".

A part of the maps in the official map pool should cater to this group, and provide an easy to defend base with plenty of ore. We just need to make sure these maps don't contain to many choke points, so the pathfinder stays happy and the game doesn't start lagging.

User avatar
SoScared
Posts: 1116
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:16 pm
Location: Oslo
Contact:

Post by SoScared » Sat Feb 20, 2016 2:11 am

Mo wrote: What about this map by Raymondo?
It's quite fun.

http://resource.openra.net/maps/8564
Really liking it. Could be a contender. If possible try get some more replays posted of this map.
Last edited by SoScared on Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
SoScared
Posts: 1116
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:16 pm
Location: Oslo
Contact:

Post by SoScared » Sun Feb 21, 2016 12:43 pm

4 maps currently moving towards pull requests:

Keep off the Grass 2: https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/pull/10347
Singles (2p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/pull/10301
Encounter (6p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10798
Chokepoint (4p): https://github.com/OpenRA/OpenRA/issues/10833

*I'll slowly be submitting new issues but starting with maps that are the most straightforward and has the less impact on the map style.
Last edited by SoScared on Sun Feb 28, 2016 8:47 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Post Reply