How to get into mapping?

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Oct 15, 2018
I have made a few spawn rooms and stuff, but I don't really know how to really get the hang of map making, and am not good at thinking of map ideas, so where should I start?

Jun 17, 2010
I started by just having an idea in my head. I learned out things by just looking existing maps ingame and in hammer. Nowdays you have videos on youtube and elsewhere and even maps decompiled ready to begin with to see how maps are done and what is the purpose of each brush with different texture and whatnot. Valve developer community site is also usefull source of information.

It takes time and lots of patience to learn out things. I still learn new things from hammer at times. So maybe watch a lot of videos on basics how to get started first, then see where you are.


L3: Member
Jul 21, 2016
I remember a quote by some smart guy who said more or less, "Creativity won't always come to you, you have to chase it with a bat". Comparing my first map to the content I make now, they all came from an idea I got from movies, images, my city, music, video games, or books. I respect everyone (from an artist pov) who releases a map because not everyone has the discipline to even get that far. Best advice I can give is get inspired by your surroundings and build upon those ideas. Fill your map with sections tied to your locale, the layout often comes from that. Look up tutorials, TF2 must be the best place to start Source mapping because of all the resources and dedicated sites like tf2maps to help you.


L1: Registered
Jun 6, 2017
The only thing I can really say is take an idea, and run with it. Run as far as you can with it and see where it takes you.
For example, my most recent work came from me asking myself "What if a TF2 map took place on a boat?"
...and I just chipped into the idea until it became a fully fledged map.
Now obviously, it will take a while to make a fully playable map, but once you get your ideas from paper to game and having it look good, that is the most satisfying feeling you can possibly get.