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Old 12-10-2011, 10:38 AM   #1
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Default Fun to play vs Fun to make

Wc3 modding is almost a decade old trade now but some mapmakers still don't grasp some basics.

Have you ever wondered why such high-quality maps like AotZ or DoE are never played while shitty games like
Horde vs Alliance or X Hero Siege get hosted every day?

How come noob mapmakers with almost no coding skills nor art talent beat the best of us?

Sure you can say that you don't make your game for the average bnet player,
but that sounds like an excuse of a defeated side.

First and biggest error that almost all mapmakers make is that they think their game will be appreciated
simply because of how complicated and hard to make their game was.

The truth is that those ultra "engines and systems" you created for your map will impress only other mapmakers.
The average player does not even realize the difference between default wc3 spells and custom ones.

We have pushed the limits of wc3 engine too many times simply because it was fun to do so,
and in the process we have forgotten that fun to make is not the same as fun to play.
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Old 12-10-2011, 12:57 PM   #2
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I agree that there is a limit to where complexity becomes overwhelming to the point where the game becomes near impossile to learn for a first time player. However, I find that most well made wc3 maps do not fall into the too complex category.

You quoted DoE, although the Condition system looks complicated. What it actually does is it generalises the number possible effects that you can get debuffed with. In essence, its actually easier to pick up and less complicated than any other AOS, since you do not need to know the exact details of all the characters in the game. Since theres only 5 possible debuffs you can suffer.
If anything, DoE doesnt get any more popular because to the average net player, any AOS = another DoTA clone.

Personally I think the popularity of a map is largely how easy it is on first timers. X Hero Siege is popular since its very very very hard to lose the initial part of the game and the general strat is just to chop down everything that appears.
Hence anyone can pick it up and not fail horribly until the mass 4 race assault appears which is like deep into the game.
Making a first impression does help.

Ive also noticed that if the map is based on some RL subject, the players will generally be more willing to play. I mean the sheer number of Anime/Lotr/Movie/Book inspired stuff proves that to some degree.

In the end its who you as the mapmaker are marketing your product to. If you know that you have a dedicated niche community thats willing to play your map, then creating a broken crappy map isnt to your best intrest.
If youre trying to create the next great Bnet hit then, making an overwhlemingly complex game with unheard of objectives isnt to your best intrest.
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:19 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kino
If anything, DoE doesnt get any more popular because to the average net player, any AOS = another DoTA clone.

Horde vs Alliance is an AOS.
It has a ton of bad tooltips, tons of imbalance issues and bugs and desyncs are a common thing. (I personally desynced 3 out of 10 games)
People play this crap every day.

It's secret?
1. bad tooltips don't matter because all spells are modified game defaults with default wc3 icons. No need to learn anything new.

2. Small number of very simple item recipes.
If you are a str hero you go for str item recipe.
If you are int hero you go for int item recipe....

3. one-on-one Hero arena to make it more interesting and different enough from dota.
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:41 PM   #4
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Point taken.

However you mentioned "tons of imbalance issues and bugs and desyncs".
If so, I dont see how its fun to anyone.

Quote:
It's secret?
1. bad tooltips don't matter because all spells are modified game defaults with default wc3 icons. No need to learn anything new.

2. Small number of very simple item recipes.
If you are a str hero you go for str item recipe.
If you are int hero you go for int item recipe....


I think that proves that ease of learning is still the greatest seeling point in any map.
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Old 12-10-2011, 04:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kino
If so, I dont see how its fun to anyone.
It is simple, it is AOS and it not dota.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kino
I think that proves that ease of learning is still the greatest seeling point in any map.
Most definitely.
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Old 12-10-2011, 05:59 PM   #6
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If anything, people play those kinds of maps because they have a small portion of heroes that completely mutilate every other hero and/or obstacle in their path. The map is only "fun" to the person who's playing them.

Many maps suffer horribly from "Quadratic Warriors, Linear Wizards" Syndrome or vice versa. Melee heroes suck in the beginning because they can't beat the damage of caster heroes, but that quickly turns around when a string of melee attacks deal more damage than the amount of time it takes for a spell to even cast. Not to mention all of those maps that spam proc passives. One map that I remember playing and thank god don't remember the name of had an item that gave melee heroes a 2% chance to activate 10 different abilities. Overkill, much?

The other thing: The Luck Factor. The average gamer loves this stuff because they aren't technically working for the great effect that these usually give (to which they shouldn't). It gets abused to where it pisses me off, like in the above example.

We live in a time where people are increasing falling in love with Instant Gratification; You don't work for the reward, the rewards come to you. And if they don't get it, their reason isn't "I failed and need to do better next time." It's "I didn't succeed because you (in our case, the map maker) won't let me." They are very different philosophies going in the same direction.

The ease of learning does count. I'd rather play a game that started easy and then starts handing your ass to you (*cough* Persona 2 *cough*), but as Kino already said, it depends on the audience you're targeting. I like those kinds of games, but a lot of others don't. Likewise, I don't like AoSes because people want to win and stack the teams. Since I'm usually the outsider, I get forced on the losing side. If I play with friends, I usually win.

But... Seriously now. I am playing a game where I know I'm going to win? Where is the sense in that if the only purpose is to win? There's no reward for an hour of needless work. It works with the anti-thesis. I am going to play a game where I know I will lose? There's no reward for an hour of work and then knowing that it will amount to nothing. It's labor that isn't necessary and thus a waste of time. Perhaps the only thing losing does is boost the horrendous ego of the sore winner. However, I still receive nothing. What's the point in that?

EDIT: Oh. I need to add that I find making a map a lot more fun than playing them. >_>
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Old 12-11-2011, 06:09 AM   #7
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I think Ignitedstar just hit the spot with this one. To me, the average player on bnet seems to just want INSTANT ACTION, no wait, no long learning, etc. They want to be able to feel godlike with their heroes/units and destroy everything else (aka other players) to feel that they're better than everyone else, their hero is the champion, etc. Of course, it really depends on each and every person's specific tastes in a map but for the most part that seems to be what the majority is looking for. If a lot of things are dying at once (favourably by one hero) and there's little actual thinking or strategy involved, it's probably a game for the masses.

I don't necessarily think that the more complex games that were fun to make are not fun to play, but again, it depends on the audience. I'm sure a lot of people would consider some complex game to be fun while others don't. It doesn't really seem like an excuse of a defeated side; in my opinion, it is pretty evident given the games that are (or were, I haven't been on bnet in quite a bit. I'm sure it hasn't changed much) on bnet.
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Old 12-12-2011, 02:00 PM   #8
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You can't blame everything on players.
To me mapmakers are more to blame.

If you are for example running a game company and you make your games interesting to yourself and 3 of your closest friends then you die really fast.

Now you can say that most games today are crap but there is always that one percent of games that are both simple to understand and challenging to play.
(Blizzard makes millions with that kind of games. )

That fact is that most mapmakers do not have the skill to make a "hit".
There is nothing bad with that btw, some companies spend millions of dollars and they still fail at it just like most of us.
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Old 12-12-2011, 02:34 PM   #9
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I think you're setting a false dichotomy here. Do you think the authors of the more popular maps did not have fun making them?
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Old 12-12-2011, 03:39 PM   #10
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That was not my point at all.
I am not even sure I have a point, just random thoughts...
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Old 12-12-2011, 07:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cohadar
You can't blame everything on players.
To me mapmakers are more to blame.
I wasn't trying to blame everything on the players; I just thought that we were only talking about players. I can blame mapmakers for a lot of things. Let's start with one for now: Aeons of Strife was the first map to become a popular map and gave the titular name AoS. What are most map makers playing? Follow the leader.

Not even that; a lot of beginning mapmakers always say, "I have an idea for an AoS/RPG--" they need stop right there. They do not have the skills to make those kinds of maps, which require a lot of planning and a lot of work. And then, you see the same people going around recruiting people to buy into a vision they're not even sure they know much about. This goes straight into what it means to be a game designer. Game designers have a hand in everything and know how to do a little bit of everything (you need to understand the tools in order to know what's possible, after all), but here's a person with almost no experience, has done no research, and has no plan. This person wants to make a map with just a single idea? Game Design doesn't work like that.

My map is a good and a bad example. It took me seven years to: Learn JASS and vJASS; half of those were dedicated to planning what exactly it was that I wanted in my map, and now it's only been for the last two years or so that I've actually started to make it. It's a long process, but I did it this way because any other map I made was when I was just another beginner-- I wanted to make stuff and I had absolutely no skill to make those things. When I first started, I didn't know what I wanted. I was running blind. Who wants to join a project where the project leader isn't sure of the vision they need to tell the others whom are helping them? When you work with a company and you're a modeler, programmer, or anything, you're still getting paid for that job. Us, as mapmakers-- 99% of the time, we get nothing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cohadar
If you are for example running a game company and you make your games interesting to yourself and 3 of your closest friends then you die really fast.
You wouldn't even be able to get a business loan with that kind of mindset. Banks would laugh in your face.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cohadar
Now you can say that most games today are crap but there is always that one percent of games that are both simple to understand and challenging to play.
(Blizzard makes millions with that kind of games. )
Yeah, I'm pretty sure I don't need to bring up Sturgeon's Law again. >_>

Quote:
Originally Posted by cohadar
That fact is that most mapmakers do not have the skill to make a "hit".
There is nothing bad with that btw, some companies spend millions of dollars and they still fail at it just like most of us.
Not gonna complain; the same goes with well... anything. Media or otherwise.
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Old 12-12-2011, 08:15 PM   #12
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Ah I think I finally realize where I was going with all this.

We burned out creating large maps when we had no business doing that, but all out suffering was not in vain.

Now we are at the top of our skills and have all the tools we could wish for.
We are capable of doing stuff in 3 days that took us 3 months before.

Raise Raise my friends, our time of glory has finally come.
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Old 12-14-2011, 08:09 PM   #13
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People still spend enough time here to have an argument

That's strange

Also, the majority of people are stupid. They need to be lead and ordered, they crave being commanded. This leads them to do as they are told by anyone with the balls to do it, which then affords bullies and cowards (those who use accidental power and the "authority" of fear to dominate, as opposed to lead, others). This then confuses people about the nature of power and authority, convincing them that to be powerful (and thus safe and secure) is to take advantage of accidental strength (for example, the strength built in to an imbalanced character) as opposed to strength earned and forged.
Naturally, the man who takes the most responsibility for the group (and possesses the earned and forged strengths of discipline, knowledge, experience and wisdom) is the man who the majority of people will defer to. This man will always take full responsibility for his group and makes the hard decisions and bears the weight of sorrow and hard work (for example: Rick of The Walking Dead). This understanding is confused in the minds of most followers so they think of the "leader" as the man who takes the least responsibility and has the most power from any source, especially if the power is false and not unique to the powerful (owning and using a gun, for example). The most powerful person is also the least afraid and doesn't need to prove that he is worthy of the group, something most people are terrified of doing and (thanks to the bullies and parasites of society) completely incapable of. As with all aspects of our instinct, mind, culture, society and life, this is reflected in the gaming industry. The majority of humans want this "I can do anything and face no negative consequences and will always be accepted because I'M the one doing the accepting" feeling and don't seem to understand that the power isn't theirs and they are feeding on someone else strength, a misunderstanding born out of their "follower, do as massa says" mindset (good and natural but in this case confused and abused by social parasites).

Overall, this need for imbalanced and easy peasy games comes from a confusion of instinct and fear of loss. The reason crappy games are so popular is that players are mostly crappy people, living in a greed stained sea of fear and lust for control and power.

Last edited by holyadvocate : 12-14-2011 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 12-16-2011, 01:11 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holyadvocate
Also, the majority of people are stupid.
People claiming that majority is stupid are just mediocre ones deluding themselves to be better than their peers, this is due to their lack of knowledge of basic mathematics or they would realize that majority of people are in the mean, that is mediocre.

And once more, blaiming everything on players is just an excuse for mapmakers.
Remember, first step towards enlightenment is admission of ignorance.
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Old 12-17-2011, 04:08 AM   #15
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dude, this is holy you are talking to
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