Mapper's Block?

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by Akura, Aug 13, 2009.

  1. Akura

    Akura L1: Registered

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    Im pretty new to mapping, the only map ive ever made was the how-to from PC Gamer. My problem now is that i can't seem to come up with any ideas for maps! Is there anything i could try in order to get around this "Mapper's Block"?
     
  2. Vigilante212

    Vigilante212 L7: Fancy Member

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    What I did to come up with my map idea was google old mining buildings, and i used some of those for ideas.
     
  3. alecom

    alecom L8: Fancy Shmancy Member

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    I sleep on it, and awaken with fresh new ideas!
     
  4. shadowfax

    shadowfax L1: Registered

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    Get some paper and a pencil and just start doodling. I find this to be very helpful when I have "mappers block". Just sketching out overviews and various layouts. Eventually some themes start to come to mind and before you know it you have an idea strong enough to start making in hammer.

    Also, play some TF2 and while playing examine the map you are on. See what was done that makes it fun, see what kind of things haven't been done.
     
  5. Eternal

    Eternal L69: Deviant Member

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    I have tons of grandiose ideas myself, I find my mappers block tends to come with the details and such of the area. Try listening to some music, and most importantly play a variety of games (and read books! REEDIG IZ GUD FIR BRIAN). Also go look at some paintings or pictures of landscapes.
     
  6. Open Blade

    Open Blade L7: Fancy Member

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    Another thing you can do, which I do often but I'm not sure if other mappers do this, if you are having map blocks, don't try to think of the entire map, it can be overwhelming. Just try and think of the layout for a certain stage of your map or even just a small area such as a string of a few buildings. Once you start to lay those down, often things just come to you and you start putting more stuff down. I do end up changing things out from time to time but I find this way of mapping can at least get you working and out of the "I'm stuck" mode.
     
  7. Randdalf

    aa Randdalf

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    My tip is to not release anything you do, until your skills are such that the map is a) good and b) gets good feedback.
     
  8. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

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    Google Images, for detailing and themes. A piece of paper and top-down layout shots of other maps, for layout ideas.
     
  9. Beamos

    Beamos L2: Junior Member

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    I just start doing random stuff then tweak it into a usable product. Seems to work pretty well.
     
  10. StoneFrog

    StoneFrog L6: Sharp Member

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    Let me start by saying that you are not alone. Mapper's block is a very common problem, and it'll pass on its own.

    I have had a great deal of trouble with mapper's block. I have mapped for years but have never once gotten anything plast playable betas, either because I lose motivation and don't know how to continue or I get sidetracked by another project/game in its entirety. It's sad really, as all these failed attempts have given me a ton of experience - I just cannot pool my collective skills together and produce anything. You're lucky by comparison.

    All I can really say is to not try and force the ideas. Especially in a game like TF2 where we have limited art assets and there's so many geniuses on this forum, you can get demotivated very easily. Just sleep on it. Get a rough image in your head of a particularly interesting-looking control point design, or any section of a potential map. Build off of that. Lots of great maps existed only as rough layouts or ideas in their authors' heads for months before they started being made.

    Just go with the flow. And when you do start drawing a layout, stick to it. Do NOT change anything - because the first playable alpha of your map is just that, an alpha - it's for getting insight on your map's layout, and this is the time for you to play around with different things. Do not worry that your map may not be fun to play, or that the layout may be no good - just stick with it. You have to. I wish I could practice what I preached, but I can't.

    Good luck!
     
  11. Akura

    Akura L1: Registered

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    wow, i was not expecting such great feedback. Sleeping on it did help, ive come up with an idea for a cp map using a train station as inspiration.