Make the middle building more neutral, it uses the same textures and color scheme as red's side
I'll have a test in a few days. As said above, maybe you should consider changing either the theme or the name of the map.
Entered the map for testing Saturday 6 U.S. Server
This was actually a pretty good level. The hill was tough to defend if enemies got on it, which discouraged spawncamping the enemy team. A couple of things though:
Out of spawn the only path people seemed to take was the left path, partly because the other path was poorly defined but also because the right path exits directly onto an easily spammed ramp.
Good work so far!
Being as nice about this as possible, I'll say one thing: It's kind of bad that I could guess who this map was from before I looked it up...
THAT said, the map suffers from a couple bad issue that can very easily be solved: It's too open and the "bases" are bit confusing.
The first is very noticeable once a team caps the middle... Attacking uphill with very little in the way of cover is troublesome... A heavy with Natascha on top of the hill is murder. If he's accompanied by a pyro, demoman or soldier and a Medic, you're basically swimming against the tide.
This can easily be fixed by a semi liberal placement of some barriers on the way up. I'm thinking Hydro-style small metal barriers, as they seem like they'd fit the place (temporary barriers erected to defend the hill) and would provide some small level of cover.
The other issue is that the bases seem needlessly broken up. I admit I didn't go through it often enough, but that was mostly because when I did, I felt lost, and like there was no point taking the inside route over the exterior route. Simplifying the bases a bit and dropping some extra signs would help a lot.
Visually I like it... Bit of wood-overkill, but so is badlands and it looks nice. Just fix those gameplay issues IMO.
I retested it S.W.A.T.Y, and it felt almost the same. The "hill" once taken is quite easy to hold, mostly because it's really difficult to stay on the point itself. People can reach it quite easily but won't stay for long. And yes, the side route is almost never used.
So what I suggest would be either to provide more cover from the side, making this route a viable alternative, and to rework spawn exit to let people choose more casually between the possibilities. Now They have to make quite a turn and seems to don't use it fully.
Thanks for testing it. I have already made some changes it, I'll try to post some pics later.
So I have made some big gameplay changes to this map. I got this awesome idea from Sean and he told me I should have a whole second floor above the point to make the map unique so I did and it turned out great. The second floor above the point adds more fun to the map and people seemed to love it from the playtest that I did yesterday. I have lowered the tower above the point because it was way too tall before, and added some cover around it because it was kinda open before.
Next version will most likely be rc1.
Great map so far. The only minor complaint I have is that there needs to be some type of off set to the second floor. Perhaps open up the top windows, making the roof like Gpit B.
Adding a wooden plank like Gpit B in Valley couldn't hurt either.
Because the high ground is generally such an advantage it is wise not to reinforce such a position with health and ammo supplies unless it is close to a teams base (It keeps map positions balanced that way).
Allowing players health and ammo on the point in KoTH is generally OP for the defenders. Holding the point is supposed to be difficult/a challenge. Removing the ramps will give you more space on the objective which looks cramped as it is, people can hide in the corners which is a significant TF2 tactic. Corners are good for gameplay.
Lose the plank to increase visuals and firing line down onto the point, and get rid of the health and ammo. If you look at Fastlane you'll notice small health packs at the far end of either side of the central CP. As much as i despise this map, it has good item placement.
For reference on these types of structures look at Gravelpit's B, and Fastlane's central cap. You can get on the roofs but there are no items to support players. It's a health and ammo sacrifice for the height. If you watch/listen to the Valve commentary on gravelpit it will also discuss the advantages of height, item placement and objectives.
The balconies on the point are unnecassery, the point already recides on a fairly steep hill. You've basically created a fortress tower, with so much height and varied defencive oppotunities, not to mention the in house health/item drops.
I would remove the blaconies, but leave the doorway so soldiers/demo's can jump up from outside.
Oh, and in a personal taste, those wooden ramps to the central point look ugly. Look at the mini ramps/bridges in hydro, and the bridge outside the bases in badlands. It would look nicer like that.
It's a KOTH map...
WOAH, NO FREAKING WAY
and to think, here i was thinking it was plr.
A KOTH map and a 5CP have similar play styles for the mid cap in many cases.
I would try it without the ramps to start, as much as I'd like to get a height advantage of that as pyro or heavy, I believe that the ramps would crowd up the gameplay on the point too much.
Fastlane does have a medkit on the roof of that cap's building, but that medkit is a small and you do not have direct firing lines at the enemies on the point while at it. Plus, you are a prime target for snipers on it. I don't know about the second one, but since the medkit is in an enclosed space, I can imagine it could sway it too much to defense. But I have not played it
From a detailing aspect, some of the wood planks seem a bit too chaotic, but I am glad you don't have them uniform. The mid building still seems fairly red biased in a color scheme, but I don't know how you would change this. I notice it is a different shade but in the darkness of the blue base, it doesn't show up well.
Woops.. I was half asleep when i wrote that so i just didn't notice. It actually looks like a 5cp map, like so much.
Most of the stuff i mentioned still applies though. Edited post in question to apply more to KoTH related play.
In terms of a KoTH design it needs more interesting structures around the middle that revolve around the central building. Allowing players to shoot onto it. Right now they just split the map into 3 areas 5CP style.
Since RED's base is.. Red, and BLU's is blue, i always considered use of the white wood appropriate when building nuetral structures. Plus, 2fort's bridge is white wood (although it does have a red roof), and i'm pretty sure sawmill's building is whit/bage/creamy.
I'd say keep the plank but remove the ramps and items. The ramps look out of place in a wooden building and removes the major advantage that soldiers and demomen can receive when attacking or defending. The health and ammo, as grazr said, makes the position overpowered. Typically, you'll want to place items lower in order to have players judge their situation more rather than running for the easy pick-me-up.
It was pretty hard to get the team who capped the point off the second floor so I decided to get rid of all the cover around the second floor. Its much easier for a sniper to kill you now, I removed the health too, but I left a small ammo pack there just in case.
OMG, Im in love with this pic ^
The building looks ugly now. I suppose a little storytelling could go a long way there, but for now it seems like some guys decided to build a house with no walls. Again, I recommend removing the ramps and also the ammo pack.
i like how it looks now but i agree, the ramps and maybe ammo should be removed.
How would the players get to the second floor if I remove the ramps ?
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