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Age of Wonders 2 Heaven » Forums » AoW2/SM Competitions, Tournaments & Wizard's Ladder » TNS: 2010 1v1 Mapmaking Tournament - Sign up here!
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Topic Subject:TNS: 2010 1v1 Mapmaking Tournament - Sign up here!
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Swolte
AOWH/AOW2H Seraph
posted 02-01-10 10:48 PM EDT (US)         
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to TNS (Tournament News Station), for all news regarding the 1v1 mapmaking tournament. Please check in here regularly, as we will have feature interviews on mapmaking with contestants and judges once in a while!

As is tradition, all submitted maps have a reasonable chance to be used for the 2010 1v1 PBEM-tournament, and the winning map is ensured participation.

So, what are you waiting for? Read the rules and conditions, and sign up!

*** THE CHALLENGE ***

The assignment is simple.
Make the best 1v1 tournament map in the world.

Conditions (read carefully!).

The map needs to be...
- the only map you submit to this tournament.
- of a SMALL SIZE only.
- playable as 1 vs 1.
- original, so do not use existing maps.
- made by you, and you alone, using the upatch-1.4.
- in English.
- open to criticism and (sometimes heavy...)
- open for the development of special tournament version. These are revisions meant to improve playability and balance, as the map may be used for an upcoming 1-v-1 pbem tournament.
- made as a tournament map. This means, for example, as balanced as you can! Both *human* playable Wizard should have an approximately equal chance of winning.
- available for the public (once submitted).

For the rest, everything is up to you! You can have underground or not, as many events (but be careful...) and story as you like, a million custom heroes/Wizards, AI Wizards or not, etc, etc...

For good examples of tournament maps, I would highly take a look at the mappack for the 2009 PBEM tournament.

*** THE WINNER ***
Now, why would you want to win this?

#1 - the winner will win a special Age of Wonders/HG drinking cup!
#2 - the winning map is guaranteed to be used in the prestigious 1v1 singles PBEM-tournament final, starting in the summer of 2010. In addition, the winning map may also be used in the first rounds of subsequent PBEM tournaments.
#3 - you can proudly wear the title '1v1 Mapmaking Champion 2010' in your signature! Forever...

NOTE: After the judging, the second and third ranked maps are also guaranteed to be used in the tournament. Remaining maps may also be used, but have no guarantees.

*** REGISTERING ***

Please sign up for this tournament by expressing your interest in this thread and posting your email (This way we can send reminders for the deadline). You can sign up anytime before the deadline to submit the map (see below).

List of contestants: 13
- Swolte
- Enginerd
- LordDuck
- PawelS
- nyarlathotep
- KillKenny
- Albaron
- The AM
- Bluebaby
- Puncturebox
- Charx
- Unsellord
- iBobs


*** SUBMISSION AND TIMELINE ***

DEADLINE TO SUBMIT COMPLETED MAP: MARCH 25th

Please submit the following to: chowguy@heavengames dot com

1) The Map
Please send the .ahm file (doesn't need to be zipped). I recommend NOT to put your name in the map so that judges have no idea who the mapmaker is and be (unconsciously) influenced.

2) -- OPTIONAL -- Statement of Testing and GI-Events -- OPTIONAL --
This is an honor-statement in a text file where you can explain how you have tested the map for balance purposes (no need to submit one if you aren't testing) as well as describe important game influencing events.

- Playtesting (balance): Playing for more than 12 ingame days counts as one testing session. You can indicate how many times you have tested and in what fashion
It's up to each judges' discretion how much value they attach to these statements for their score on 'Balance'.
- GI Events: Game influencing (GI) events are events that influence actual gameplay (Events other than for atmosphere and story). You are advised to indicate the most crucial ones, and in your mapmaking of a tournament map, to keep them to a minimum.

See example below in the FAQ!!

*** THE JUDGING ***

- Who will judge?

TO BE CONFIRMED:
- Arnout (Your Triumph Studios main scenario design/balance developer)
- Timelord (Your Cherub, winner of 2009 1v1 mapmaking tournament, former WL-champion)
- Costa (Your 2009 PBEM champion)
- The Groll (Your expert mapmaker)

- How will the maps be judged?
Chowguy will send the maps on to the judges who will only get the titles of the maps. They do NOT know who made those maps.
The maps will be judged on these three characteristics at face value.

Balance
This design basically and PURELY answers the question: "would you take a challenge playing either Wizard?"
- Are there any unfair advantages for one Wizard?
- Does one side have more opportunity to exploit game mechanics than the other? (e.g., seduce, control animal, etc...)
Note that a map doesn't need to be symmetrical in order to be balanced. You can be quite creative here.


Playability
This design determines whether a map is fun to play AND suits a tournament. Is there something unique/creative in the (strategic) design of the map that makes the gameplay stand out? Is it too predictable, or unpredictable? Is it easy to see what the game-influencing events are doing? Would it take too long to finish, or too fast? To what extent does winning depend on human x human play (as opposed to against AI)? Etc...

Atmosphere
This design determines how the map feels to play: the setting. Can you relate to the Wizard/Heroes? How creative is the landscape and special areas? Are there events or special signs that add to the atmosphere? A story?

*** FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ***

Feel free to ask any questions in this thread and I will put them up here with the answers.

What does a statement of testing look like?
A statement of testing should give a judge a quick impression.

This is an example:
---------------------------------
STATEMENT OF TESTING/ EVENTS
Map: The Depths.

BALANCE TESTING
Map playtested against myself (5 sessions)
Map playtested with friend (1 sessions)
Map playtested by testers (1 sessions)

(Provide links if there were actual threads)

Relevant comments: Big Archon main starting city does not allow building of Saints.

GI EVENTS
All events were play tested!

Important game influencing events:
- When Queen Ellessil captures the Wand of Earth item, and brings it to the temple of Gaia, the Goblin main underground area will collapse (change terrain: dirt/rock).
- A mighty hero will appear for King Gobbo upon killing the rogue elven hero called Skitzy.

----------------------------------

Isn't the statement of testing flawed and unfair?
The main purpose of this statement is to motivate people to actually test their maps. It is also a way to appreciate those mapmakers who do test!

However, the judges can now also take this into account at their discretion. It will simply be unrealistic time-wise to judge balance on the basis of playing the map once as a judge. There is a lot an experienced eye can see. Keep in mind that if, for example, the map has a lot of events, and is quite asymmetrical, a judge may put more value on the presence of such a statement than when the map is quite straightforward and doesn't need much testing.

However, it is an honor statement and people can indeed lie, and exaggerate. Not to mention that the amount of testing doesn't mean the map is actually balanced better. Please bear in mind that the judges will be (made) aware of this as well.

As for events, these are sometimes not obvious to people and pointing Game influencing events out may make for a better assessment of the balance.

No points are subtracted from NOT having such a statement.

Will the scores of my map be made public?
The idea is that we will only make public a top 5 ranking of maps without scores. Average scores (from all 4 judges per map) are available upon request after the judging. We will not make the names of the judges known.

Can I still change my map after the mapmaking tournament for the pbem tournament?
YES! If your map will be chosen for the upcoming pbem tournament you will receive feedback to make it even better. If you don't have time to fix things, the tournament organizers will make a tournament version of your map and use this.

Can my map get disqualified?
Yes, your risk disqualification if your map does not adhere to any of the conditions listed at the top. Ultimately, the judges decide what to do in such situations.

Why ONLY small maps? I have too many cool ideas and they don't fit!
Sorry, this particular mapmaking tournament is specifically designed for an upcoming 1v1 pbem tournament. FFA mapmaking tournaments allowing for larger sizes will certainly follow in the future.
Allowing medium maps would take too long to finish, even though these can be more interesting. Another reason is that its a very manageable size for our overambitious, and beginner mapmakers. A short but intense time to mapmake is usually best and keeps things fun!

Will my map be played blind?
('Blind' means that the players will not look at the map in the editor before the tournament starts).

No. In the case where knowledge can have influence on the outcome of the game, it is tricky, especially with the eye on the upcoming tournament. We cannot realize people playing the map blind for several reasons. First of all, there is no way we can really ensure that people don't know the map. Second, the judges will also want to play in the subsequent tournament. Third, maps may be played simultaneously in rounds so that earlier logs may betray crucial secrets to others. Fourth, the mapmakers themselves may be participating in the tournament.

Can I use SEM?
Yes. SEM stands for 'Standard Editor Mod' which is a tool designed by JamieJME. It is not a mod in the traditional sense, but it can aid in applying cool tricks to existing maps.
Check it out here


Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

[This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 03-24-2010 @ 08:31 PM).]

AuthorReplies:
LordDuck
Member
posted 02-13-10 05:47 AM EDT (US)     1 / 158       
Sing me up!

My maps:
  • Mountain of the Gods A small map for 2 or 3 players. Current rating(5): 4.5/5
  • Crusades against a Nightmare A small map for 2 players. Current rating(1): 3.6/5
  • The Great Unknown An extra large map for seven players and one strong Ai. Current rating(2): 4.2/5
  • PawelS
    Member
    posted 02-13-10 08:57 AM EDT (US)     2 / 158       
    I'm in!

    I have 3 questions:

    1. Does the map have to be exactly the same size as the standard Small maps? I made a tool that can create custom-sized maps, and I'd prefer my map to have a bit different aspect ratio (width to height), while maintaining approximately the same area as normal Small maps.

    2. Can I use tricks that can be only done by hex-editing (for example: making a city with a Stone Wall but without Siege Workshop, or making a hero or item with Healing II or a paralyzing ranged attack)?

    3. Do I have to write all the map text alone? I mean that someone would help me with writing things like the wizard/hero descriptions and the map description, but of course all the map design would be done by me.

    A proud member of the Unofficial Patch team.
    Creator of the AoW1 Mod.

    [This message has been edited by PawelS (edited 02-13-2010 @ 09:07 AM).]

    LonesomeWolf
    Member
    posted 02-13-10 10:27 AM EDT (US)     3 / 158       
    I'm completely new to tournaments but sign me up anyway!
    Swolte
    AOWH/AOW2H Seraph
    posted 02-13-10 10:55 AM EDT (US)     4 / 158       
    Challenging questions!
    1. Does the map have to be exactly the same size as the standard Small maps? I made a tool that can create custom-sized maps, and I'd prefer my map to have a bit different aspect ratio (width to height), while maintaining approximately the same area as normal Small maps.
    No, the maps need to be standard small size.

    (Send me an email in terms of a more exact proposal and we can review again if this is really crucial. I can also explain in more detail).
    2. Can I use tricks that can be only done by hex-editing (for example: making a city with a Stone Wall but without Siege Workshop, or making a hero or item with Healing II or a paralyzing ranged attack)?
    Yes, as long as no mod or special installations (other than v14!) are required to play the map.
    3. Do I have to write all the map text alone? I mean that someone would help me with writing things like the wizard/hero descriptions and the map description, but of course all the map design would be done by me.
    Thank you for this question as it is largely unaddressed in the rules. It is a tricky one!

    I guess it depends:

    NO. The person plays an essential part in the atmosphere. In your case, the writer would play an essential part in the storyline and the content/humor of the descriptions specifically written for this map's atmosphere. For example, I can't ask King David to think of a storyline for my map and have him write it too, along with some signs, events and hero descriptions adding to scores for the map atmosphere.

    YES. The person plays a purely supportive/elaborative role. In this case, the writer helps you mostly with phrasing, grammar, and spelling. In the same vein, it is allowed to have people play test the map and give feedback on your map's balance, or have people look over your map for advise on playability, etc... people are encouraged to do so!
    So, one way would be for you to write the hero description, and have someone else help to improve your writing.

    If people want help, do remember that it is OK to add story-lines etc... after the judging, when the map is released! But for judging purposes, it is more fair to have one player be primarily responsible for the different skills of mapmaking: balance, playability, and atmosphere. We definitely don't want collaborative projects competing with singles.

    I admit that there are no clear cut rules for what is supportive and essential, but keep the above in mind when deciding what to do. When in doubt, feel free to email me.


    Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
    My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
    Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
    My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
    Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

    [This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 02-13-2010 @ 11:03 AM).]

    Enginerd
    HG Angel
    posted 02-13-10 12:57 PM EDT (US)     5 / 158       
    Cool... if no one else signs up I'm guarenteed of making the top 5. Most excellent

    This will be my very first AoWSM map that I have created from scratch. Guess it was time for me to stop judging and tweaking other people's maps and actually produce something

    And it will be most excellent!!!
    Swolte
    AOWH/AOW2H Seraph
    posted 02-13-10 01:12 PM EDT (US)     6 / 158       
    Haha, I have already started... both starting positions are completed. Still debating the degree I want the map to be symmetrical or not...


    Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
    My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
    Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
    My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
    Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
    nyarlathotep
    Member
    posted 02-13-10 03:31 PM EDT (US)     7 / 158       
    I'm in!!!

    Edit: D'oh! Another run-in with juggernauts of mapmaking...This time Swolte & Enginerd...

    Anyhow, lets see if this pupil can outshine the masters. (Damn, I must be delusional)

    Now I must choose which idea to take...choices,choices, choices...

    Proud mapmaker for the UPatch team
    One gas to rule them all, One gas to find them
    One gas to bring them all and with the Spice we bind them
    Creator of the following maps: RenaissanceEarth, RoadToHell, YeOfLittleFaith, FrostbiteDelirium, Stormy Seas
    Co-creator for: CityDwellers
    together with TravisII

    [This message has been edited by nyarlathotep (edited 02-13-2010 @ 03:46 PM).]

    Swolte
    AOWH/AOW2H Seraph
    posted 02-13-10 08:17 PM EDT (US)     8 / 158       
    Great to see you back, Nyarlathotep. Maybe we'll be able to use your map again!

    Psst, Enginerd is hardly someone you need to worry about. He has never even submitted a map!


    Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
    My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
    Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
    My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
    Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008

    [This message has been edited by Swolte (edited 02-13-2010 @ 08:17 PM).]

    nyarlathotep
    Member
    posted 02-13-10 08:44 PM EDT (US)     9 / 158       
    Yeah, but he knows at least how to perfectly balance out a map.

    Still, You'll all be bafled by my pure genious conception!

    Proud mapmaker for the UPatch team
    One gas to rule them all, One gas to find them
    One gas to bring them all and with the Spice we bind them
    Creator of the following maps: RenaissanceEarth, RoadToHell, YeOfLittleFaith, FrostbiteDelirium, Stormy Seas
    Co-creator for: CityDwellers
    together with TravisII
    Enginerd
    HG Angel
    posted 02-14-10 00:26 AM EDT (US)     10 / 158       
    *rofl* With all the issues and debates from the last few maps in the tourney, you think I know how to balance a map

    Well... glad you think so

    Your praise is most appreciated!

    (rats... now I'm not guarenteed a top 5 finish... oh no and not only is it my very first SM map, my only other map I submitted was for AoW1 and it was a single player one.... I feel I'm in way over my head... but it will be fun)

    So... How many other Rookie Mapmakers out there going to give it a try????
    KillKenny
    Member
    posted 02-14-10 07:22 PM EDT (US)     11 / 158       
    Count me in as well
    Albaron
    Member
    posted 02-16-10 03:50 AM EDT (US)     12 / 158       
    I'll give it a try, so count me in. Hope I can make it in time...
    The A M
    Member
    posted 02-18-10 06:57 AM EDT (US)     13 / 158       
    I can be the bottom holder.
    Bluebaby
    Member
    posted 02-18-10 08:22 AM EDT (US)     14 / 158       
    Count me in to fill the list! Although I must say that March 25th is narrow. You should rather make it 27Th or 28th! - Why on earth haven't you started earlier?
    Enginerd
    HG Angel
    posted 02-19-10 09:02 PM EDT (US)     15 / 158       
    I'm so glad to see that I'm going to have a top 10 map. This is most excellent

    And no pressure guys but I just sent my map out to my most excellent playtesters.... Still lots of time for me to start completely over after I get their feedback
    Puncturebox
    Member
    posted 02-22-10 04:36 AM EDT (US)     16 / 158       
    Count me in though im new and have only presented one map, im game to see how i fare.
    nyarlathotep
    Member
    posted 02-22-10 01:02 PM EDT (US)     17 / 158       
    Just finished the painting & event slinging, now comes the long and arduous playtesting and updating period...

    Good luck to everybody!

    Proud mapmaker for the UPatch team
    One gas to rule them all, One gas to find them
    One gas to bring them all and with the Spice we bind them
    Creator of the following maps: RenaissanceEarth, RoadToHell, YeOfLittleFaith, FrostbiteDelirium, Stormy Seas
    Co-creator for: CityDwellers
    together with TravisII
    Charx
    Member
    posted 02-24-10 06:28 AM EDT (US)     18 / 158       
    I will also give it a try. But i am not sure if i can finish a map until end of march... we will see.
    Dreaming
    Member
    posted 02-24-10 01:10 PM EDT (US)     19 / 158       
    Oh, dear me. Itīs so tempting... But having so little time.

    .......

    Oh what the hell! Sign me in. Even though I have a snowballs chance in hell.
    The A M
    Member
    posted 02-25-10 10:36 AM EDT (US)     20 / 158       
    I have possible name figured out. It's all about map name.
    LonesomeWolf
    Member
    posted 02-25-10 03:40 PM EDT (US)     21 / 158       
    I'm sorry but you'll have to count me out I'm too tied up and there's no way I could finish or even test a map properly until end of march ...

    And I had such a good idea! But anyways, good luck to everybody else!
    Swolte
    AOWH/AOW2H Seraph
    posted 03-04-10 11:09 AM EDT (US)     22 / 158       
    Have a good strategic design idea, and map is 20% done, however, no story to fit it, yet!


    Get the unofficial Patch v1.4. here!
    My best AoW-Sm map: Drums of Death (This is the multiplayer version; for single player, or AI use different version)
    Other proud AoW-sm maps: The Key of Kharzul, The Fight for Light, Waikiti Island, Goldrush Mountains
    My proud AoW2 maps:The River Arne
    Coordinator of the v1.4 and v1.5 patchteams, Seraph of AoWHeaven, PBEM Singles Champion 2008
    nyarlathotep
    Member
    posted 03-04-10 12:11 PM EDT (US)     23 / 158       
    Well, I'm still stuck in the playtest phase, and me having recently switched from loner to lover doesn't improve the evolution of my map...

    Proud mapmaker for the UPatch team
    One gas to rule them all, One gas to find them
    One gas to bring them all and with the Spice we bind them
    Creator of the following maps: RenaissanceEarth, RoadToHell, YeOfLittleFaith, FrostbiteDelirium, Stormy Seas
    Co-creator for: CityDwellers
    together with TravisII
    Puncturebox
    Member
    posted 03-05-10 00:35 AM EDT (US)     24 / 158       
    Well i figure im done :P another very small kb map lol, ill learn to paint and process like you guys one day

    for now though, i cant wait for all the maps to come to light.
    Unsellord
    Member
    posted 03-07-10 04:27 AM EDT (US)     25 / 158       
    Put me on the list plz.
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