Openness vs. Wasted Space?

Discussion in 'Mapping Questions & Discussion' started by KubeKing, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. KubeKing

    aa KubeKing Back home in Jupiter, things are getting harder

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    I've been looking into maps like pl_swiftwater, and I've noticed that many of the gameplay spaces it features are quite large, yet it obviously makes use of them well. When I design a map, I end up not adding 'enough' partially out of the fear that much of the map will turn into a wasted mess, and I feel that a Payload map I'm designing right now might become chokey.

    My question is, how can I design around and through TF2's emphasis on mobility while not ending up with an overscaled and unsatisfying experience?

    (BTW, I've posted screenshots for my Payload map in question here, if you're interested)

    Thanks,
    Kube :)

    P.S. Sorry for the broad question, but it's something I've been thinking about for a while, and I feel that now would be the time to ask.
     
  2. Tumbolisu

    aa Tumbolisu  I ⌄ I 

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    The only thing I can say with my 3 am tiredness is: People need space to fight. Depending on the class you want a different amounts of space in different directions. Soldier wants space above him, Spy wants stairs and corners, and so on. If something is supposed to be important to fight on, like controlpoints, make the space in a way that the classes that are meant to fight there will like it. And never make any class overpowered.
    I hope I somehow helped with this.
     
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  3. MrHatlf

    MrHatlf engineer main, majoring in exploiting

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    Make the area of gameplay just big enough on first release. Then slowly make it more cluttered, based on player feedback that is, but not to the point where it's a meatgrinder. If the map is enjoyable while being big and open on its alpha stages, then there is no need to make any changes to how big the area is.
     
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  4. Zed

    aa Zed Certified Most Crunk™

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    Scouts want routes where they can take advantage of their mobility to keep above their opponents. Clutter needs to be placed advantageously to support that, but areas still need to be open for them to function proficiently. Definitely take that into account.

    Maybe yours will end up being the first custom payload map I really super enjoy. (Other than Pier)
     
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    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
  5. Freyja

    aa Freyja ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Personally I always subscribed to the idea that if your map is properly scaled, there is no "wasted space." Even if there's some area off to the side that has little traffic and no real purpose, it's not wasted. Look at Badwater - the area behind second, with all the shipping containers rarely sees any play beyond people using the health pack back there. Yet, it can create some interesting fights, offer people a way to sneak around the majority of the battle...areas like that, even if they're not directly tied to the fighting can add a lot to the map.
     
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  6. saph

    saph L4: Comfortable Member

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    Most space isn't wasted, it will eventually have traffic for flanking, pushing, or defending. Making a TF2 map with the right scale is hard because the map DOES feel open, but it really isn't. Make sure there is always a short walk to a med or ammo kit (spread them evenly) because this can create side areas which can lead to fights. Have some areas a bit confined, but break them up with small lobby-like space where the point is. (Also, most of the "smaller" areas can usually fit the payload and two or three people side-to-side and still have room for easy movement.)

    Look at the roof by point 2 of Badwater Basin. Many soldiers (including me, often) will go on the roof to get the med kit or to push in a flank-like fashion. Half of the time, a soldier or two will be there fight the opposing RED while the cart is still at first point (and the gates are locked for BLU).

    The only changes I can see based off the pictures are:
    Screen 1: The garage on the right-hand side is a bit wide and open, maybe bring the walls in a bit, but have open windows. The front rock (behind the fence) provides a large amount of cover for BLU when the payload is first being pushed. I would lower the fence some (along with the rock).
    Screen 2: I would remove the ramp (right by point). I would also move the building (with the A sign on it) a bit back. (It is pretty close to the point. Also, I can't tell if that's a doorway or skybox error.)
    Screen 3: Maybe make the huts (on the left-hand side of the picture), more open. I would probably move them back a bit to create more space up there.
    Screen 4: There are a lot of places to check (for snipers), but based off of the other screenshots, BLU should be able to pick off a few of RED. Just keep this in mind if you do major sightline/geometry reworks.
    Screen 5: This is nicely done. I'd maybe move the track to closer to the screen shot (and have a smaller turn). One note: before decorating, I would make the ramp less steep and I'd make sure the seam of the two blocks doesn't go straight with the metal portion.
    Screen 6: This is a nice spot. I would lower it to almost ground-level (like the veranda outside of spawns of Harvest) because you have a lot of height advantage for RED at this point. Once again, the ramp seems too close to the track.

    Overall, this is a nice start. Not all aspects have to be involved heavily in a fight, but some flank routes are nice. I'm not the best, but these are my ideas. Edit and test, balancing the map the way you think it's fair. I can look in-game myself if you want me to make more accurate suggestions, after all, running around in a map CAN help a lot. If you want more information that is class-specific (in relation to the environment and space for movement), just reply or PM me. Good luck with this! It looks good so far.
     
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  7. saph

    saph L4: Comfortable Member

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    Sorry, I forgot to write about the main question you had. TF2 does like mobility, but each class has it's advantages. To make an area open, but not overscaled, break it up with height variation and buildings. Sometimes, open is an in-between of what feels cluttered and what feels like a tunnel. Badwater Basin's final point has a hard choke point, but it has balconies and a little height variation.
     
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  8. saph

    saph L4: Comfortable Member

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    Also, I noticed this earlier after I posted here. I added a section on soldiers. I might eventually post my breakdown for every class the way I play it or important concepts about the class. This might give you some information about how to build a map that suits the needs of every class, but is balanced. Go to: http://forums.tf2maps.net/showthread.php?t=22442
     
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  9. worMatty

    aa worMatty Repacking Evangelist

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    I think if you're going to do a payload map then you should have a variety of types of area, and not just have several large areas separated by corners. I think, where you narrow a passage down, you should increase the total number of passages in that area. Sort of like you are maintaining the surface area, or volume of an area, but instead are dividing it in to multiple smaller routes. The reason for that is to provide multiple channels for traffic to flow down, because you are narrowing the width.

    Overscaling just sounds like you have made an area, or the map too large or long. You'd know this if you played it as a heavy or pyro. It would take you a long time to get places, feel a bit dull and you might be picked off by snipers and stuff. Playtesting is the best way to determine a sense of scale, in my opinion.
     
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    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015
  10. UKCS-Alias

    aa UKCS-Alias Mann vs Machine... or... Mapper vs Meta?

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    Thats because the healthpack makes it usefull.

    However, there is a major push method possible there. When just behind the hill at cp1 you can go inside to the left. For engineers it can feature a strong sentry nest there. And with a teleporter you can suddenly make the container area an area of high traffic. This is why it has to be wide. This nest is mainly ment for overtaking the higher part near cp2.

    The healthpack there to me is more of a way to not make the area feel useless for the person that didnt know where he went. It at least will show him his effort isnt totaly useless.
     
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