Mapping Task Force

Dataworm

Well-Known Member
Gameserver Admin
22 Feb 2015
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Hi everyone,

I finally want to start a group of people who can take care of improving the existing maps.
The issue is that we have nowadays quite a lot of bad maps (bad = not well suited for the server right now). Most of these maps are bad balanced in favor of the humans, in some cases the zombies almost never win a single round. For a fairly challenged and more interesting gameplay we want to modify the maps so that we can enjoy those maps even more.

To do this we need some people who are willing to help. Most of all we need people with some mapping knowledge but we need also people who investigate what needs to be done and how it could be done. I already have a few people at hand so that we should be able to start right away but the more the better. If we run out of tasks at some point, we can still look into testing/adding/creating new maps. But for now I would rather ensure that we get some 'high quality maps' before just having a bunch of badly suited maps.

How would such a process look like and what are the required tasks in detail? In short we have an iterative process consisting of these steps:

  • Identify unbalanced maps/spots
  • Figure out possible solutions to improve these spots
  • Prioritize/distribute/organize tasks
  • Perform map changes
  • Test/Observe if things have improved
  • Repeat if there is further need for improvement

Identifying and observing changes in map balance will also be one of my tasks, my bot already provides some helpful data. But it also needs additional observations to figure out why a map is unbalanced. So we have to find op-spots or spots where humans survive very often because it is too hard to reach for zombies and similar issues.
Here on the forum we collect such observations for each map and we can also discuss about potential fixes. The forum is public so everyone can join in and try to help out.
Our mappers will attempt to perform the suggested modifications (or try out some stuff by themselves). They are free to select what they would like to work on.
Nevertheless we should try to keep things structured. We should try to prioritize tasks in respect to how urgent a bug should be fixed, how bad a map is balanced or how easy it appears to make a modification. That can help the mappers to work on tasks first that bring us the biggest value. But it can still become chaotic if we have many maps with many bad spots and several solutions for each spot and also many mappers to work on tasks... So we should try to keep things organized. We should have a managed list of known issues so that reported things dont get lost or forgotten. We dont need a big team for this but 2-3 people could be nice.

As mentioned above anyone can report map issues here and thereby help us. But if you really wanna get involved on a regular base, please message me or answer in this thread. This can help us to coordinate tasks or we might invite you for map tests etc.

Feel free to post here if you have any other ideas, suggestions or other remarks.

See you around fattiez!
 

Molsted

Well-Known Member
Mapper
13 Dec 2020
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I would go all in to help with it. I like the idea, that we would have a broad amount of people to decide the changes. Maybe we could have multible maps released with a new event for the server? SPA and admins what do you say?
 
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Paw

Ex-Admin
Ex Admin
Donator
I think the admin team handles this pretty well already. If there is any issues with maps you could just report them to the mapper (if they are still around) or to the admin team. Some maps have issues that can't be fixed and is just why they are that way I think, but i could be wrong. I don't really like the thought/idea of messing around too much with the maps in the way it could affect gameplay either as I think most maps work great the way they are at the moment and I'm afraid it could ruin the maps more for players / make them less fun etc.
 

Molsted

Well-Known Member
Mapper
13 Dec 2020
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23
As i understand it, the consensus amongst SPA is that maps are in general finished, when they are published. Disregarding time and effort, i don´t agree with this approach. An example of a map on the server that has been updated is Janno´s Pyramid-map. This map already worked great, was well tested and liked. But dispite this it still had some parts of the map that felt dead/unused or not apealing. These are the type of problems that are not likely to become apparent, when testing, unless the testing would take place over a way longer time, than whats realistic for something you dont get paid or a have time for. Janno has now, half a year later, released an update and its amazing and has in my opinion brought a lot more life to it.

I get the worry regarding fixing something that is not broken, but changes can be made carefully and even revised. Thats why i really like the idea of having a team, thats gonna look at it properly together.
 

Dataworm

Well-Known Member
Gameserver Admin
22 Feb 2015
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Some of these admins who already fixes map would actually be part of that team. But so far fixes were usually done for very big issues and quite rarely. But there are still maps that are completely unbalanced as well as several op spots around. So the whole idea is rather about doing what is already done occasionally, just with some more structure and an hopefully bigger team.

Maps were usually published when they were acceptable, nowadays it is sometimes also enough that maps are just popular (16_chambers for example). That doesn't mean that they are that good or finished, they are usually just the way as they were usually provided by some mapper in the internet. And how good a map fits to the server depends a lot on the settings. zombie servers can be quite different (knockback, hp, respawn, number of players) and that also affects the balance.

The idea is not to rush ahead and entirely change the existing maps. As mentioned it would be an iterative approach. And my intention is not to have a new version of a map every week. When we tried to improve a map we will give it some time to observe the changes unless it is obvious that things don't work out as intended. ;-)
 

Melisa

Queen
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Special Admin
EliteHunterz Clan Member
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Zombie Escape Admin
Tech Team
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23 May 2014
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I think this idea could be something good. We need more activity on the servers wether it has to do with ingame updates or map updates. Any activity shows our players that we are dedicated into improving our servers for their best experiense.


I get the worry regarding fixing something that is not broken, but changes can be made carefully and even revised. Thats why i really like the idea of having a team, thats gonna look at it properly together.
I strongly agree with what is written above, changes can be made carefully and even revised. I think that this team is a step forward for our servers to continue staying alive. We have to see this from a broader perspective rather than just "the players wont like it".

Honestly, we don't really know what the players will like or not like if one of the "new/fixed" maps were to be added.
We may get some negative feedback, but we may also get some positive feedback, and with that we can work even better cuz that will help to tell us what our playerbase wants.

I am glad to see this activity from our members, keep up the good work guys, it's appreciated! =)
 
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SOUR

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27 Oct 2010
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If I told you, I'd have to kill you.
If you need help editing maps/fixing maps dont be shy to send me a message, usually pretty easy to edit maps.
 
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easy

Dances With Zombiez
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I am always looking for map makers to fix maps.

I agree to Paw that the regular maps shouldnt be changed too much - but small fixes here and there are needed from time to time. I got some changes in mind already...
 
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SOUR

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If I told you, I'd have to kill you.
Just a quick thing tho..The Original map makers might not like that you edit their maps, always try to get in touch with them first.
 
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klim348

New Member
5 Sep 2021
4
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1
Hey , i've talking to Bear recently about getting into your mapping team , My name is Klim , I'm 19 y.o source level designer , currently working with redragen project cs go cybersport organisation ( making maps for tournaments etc) , have like 3k hours in hammer of total , can make my own textures , models and some great map layouts ( workshop https://steamcommunity.com/profiles/76561199200432743/myworkshopfiles/) i'm looking forward to edit some of your eh maps and make my own and become a part of your team.
 

Dataworm

Well-Known Member
Gameserver Admin
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With a 25 days old account your 3k hammer experience must come from another account I guess :-D
 

klim348

New Member
5 Sep 2021
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1
With a 25 days old account your 3k hammer experience must come from another account I guess :-D
i have like 3 accs , one of them was stolen with 10 maps in a workshop , second was banned , same as main , you can check my "source knowledge", if you doubt in any way, also i have a project in a develop right now, so would be great to get some feedback from you.
 

Dataworm

Well-Known Member
Gameserver Admin
22 Feb 2015
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If you wanna make a new map, then I suggest that you can also create a new thread where you can provide info about the current state and ask for more feedback.
 

Dataworm

Well-Known Member
Gameserver Admin
22 Feb 2015
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I can make a note on my list but there is no real 'mapping team' at the moment. All communication is done within this forum at the moment. As a mapper you can pick some open task if available and if nobody should do so, I will ask those people on my list if they are willing to handle an open task.
But I should indeed try to report some more problematic spots so that you mappers have something to work on. ;-)