Custom Map: Hard Art 9: Firebirds

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burguertime

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Reply #15 on: November 27, 2010, 04:29:27 pm
Just for curiosity, how many relays you build on the second island (the one by the third upgrade with elevation four)?

I built one in a odd (it took room for two buildings on that island) placement in order to link to two other islands with only one relay, but sometimes it got destroyed.

Don't make a slog just because. Be like Master Mapmaker SPIFFEN:
(...)Difficulty is subjective. (...)
SPIFFEN chooses to rate each map as trivial because they believe that the difficulty of the map depends on the capability of the player.
BAD RATING: MEASUREMENT OF MAP HARDNESS.
Quote from: DumbCreeperGamer
"Ugh, me no finish map, map too hard, ME RATE ONE.
oOga OoGa to you too.


burguertime

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Reply #16 on: November 27, 2010, 04:45:48 pm
Is there any reason the collector is there? switching places between collector and mortar gives you two little squares more coverage for energy building. It is very little, but hey, lets min-max

Don't make a slog just because. Be like Master Mapmaker SPIFFEN:
(...)Difficulty is subjective. (...)
SPIFFEN chooses to rate each map as trivial because they believe that the difficulty of the map depends on the capability of the player.
BAD RATING: MEASUREMENT OF MAP HARDNESS.
Quote from: DumbCreeperGamer
"Ugh, me no finish map, map too hard, ME RATE ONE.
oOga OoGa to you too.


UpperKEES

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Reply #17 on: November 27, 2010, 06:56:10 pm
Just for curiosity, how many relays you build on the second island (the one by the third upgrade with elevation four)?

(click to show/hide)

I built one in a odd (it took room for two buildings on that island) placement in order to link to two other islands with only one relay, but sometimes it got destroyed.

(click to show/hide)

Is there any reason the collector is there? switching places between collector and mortar gives you two little squares more coverage for energy building. It is very little, but hey, lets min-max

(click to show/hide)

This map is all about balancing:
- You need to expand fast enough to have enough space.
- You need weapons to be able to expand.
- You need space to generate energy.
- You need to expand slow enough to be able to defend the terrain you conquered.
- You need to cap emitters that become a threat.
- You need to let go of emitters that would only drain your energy.

Finding the right strategy (expansion speed) is the key to solving this map. Only when building your first mortar in parallel with another reactor you will experience some deficit, but I played the rest of the map without it. When you still have a deficit when capping emitters you'll most likely have a lot of trouble finishing.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2010, 11:00:14 pm by UpperKEES »

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Kamron3

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Reply #18 on: November 28, 2010, 12:34:49 am
With your help I got control of 4 islands, but at 15:00 it kicks my ass.



UpperKEES

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Reply #19 on: November 28, 2010, 11:34:45 am
With your help I got control of 4 islands

(click to show/hide)

(click to show/hide)

at 15:00 it kicks my ass.

(click to show/hide)

(click to show/hide)

(click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: December 13, 2010, 11:00:59 pm by UpperKEES »

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Kamron3

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Reply #20 on: November 28, 2010, 05:46:12 pm
Even with this help, I still can't make it past 18:00 without the second island getting overrun.



UpperKEES

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Reply #21 on: November 28, 2010, 06:20:13 pm
In that case you probably didn't expand fast enough to be able to isolate the center islands. This makes capping their emitters a lot harder.

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Kamron3

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Reply #22 on: November 29, 2010, 05:10:07 am
In that case you probably didn't expand fast enough to be able to isolate the center islands. This makes capping their emitters a lot harder.

Makes sense... I can't expand fast, it's just not me.. but I really want to finish the map! :'(



RichieRich

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Reply #23 on: November 29, 2010, 07:22:35 am
Kees, until you mentioned double time in relaiton to the puzzle map I didnt know it existed.  :P

I love it. Now I'm failing this in 9 minutes instead of 18  ;D

Much harder than the first one all right. Easy enough to get a position but need to be more aggressive with moving to close things down.

Good fun.



UpperKEES

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Reply #24 on: November 29, 2010, 08:22:16 am
Makes sense... I can't expand fast, it's just not me.. but I really want to finish the map! :'(

I admire your perseverance.

(click to show/hide)

And like I said in chat: don't use double speed all the time and/or pause a lot. This really helps! You may think it saves you time, but starting over and over will cost you more!

Kees, until you mentioned double time in relaiton to the puzzle map I didnt know it existed.  :P

I love it.

Yep, it can be convenient in certain cases, see here, but it can also make you play hasty and badly.

Now I'm failing this in 9 minutes instead of 18  ;D

Heheh! :D

(click to show/hide)

Much harder than the first one all right. Easy enough to get a position but need to be more aggressive with moving to close things down.

Yep, that's what I tried. I first made it as tight as possible for myself to finish. The emitter increases occurred after 8, 14 (+6) and 18 (+4) minutes. Then I was afraid not many people would be able to finish and I don't like posting almost impossible maps, so I changed the increases to occur after 9, 15 (+6) and 18 (+3) minutes. These few extra minutes make a world of a difference!

Unfortunately (for me) Kapoios showed me in chat yesterday that because of the above it's possible to complete the map just before 15 minutes by using the strategy I was trying to prevent: a speed run with mortars (and some drone support). This proves how hard it is to create a map that's still reasonably doable, but can't be pwned (because I consider a time below 18 minutes faster than intended). I guess I shouldn't have tried to please everyone at the same time.... :-\

Oh well, definitely time for a completely new series! 8)

Good fun.

Thanks! :)
« Last Edit: December 13, 2010, 11:02:37 pm by UpperKEES »

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Miss Melissa

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Reply #25 on: November 29, 2010, 01:19:13 pm
yep.. quite the battle.. horrible time, but hey at least i finished. good times great map. thanks.



UpperKEES

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Reply #26 on: November 29, 2010, 02:12:16 pm
yep.. quite the battle.. horrible time, but hey at least i finished. good times great map. thanks.

Hey, great to see you back here! :)

Yep, this map changed a bit since you played The Artist, so you may have noticed that.

On the other hand it almost seems as if this one is still easier for you than your own map! Or are you just trying to beat all of us on that one? ;)

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Kapoios

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Reply #27 on: November 29, 2010, 03:37:56 pm
First of all, great map, KEES. It certainly is an extremely hard battle. And a very pretty picture! It gave me a few days of a style of gameplay, a long, hard, non-trivial battle that I had never been exposed to before. It is a gem of its style combining all sorts of gameplay elements, most important being using smart locations for weapons. Efficient energy use, albeit very important in the map, comes second to putting your weapons at good places, and I really like that.

My experience with it had its ups and downs. My first reaction (except the initial "hey, this is very pretty") was that I was irritated by the colouring of the various elements that wouldn't let me understand what's going on with just looking. Luckily, this doesn't go to extremes. At least you can tell which one is higher of two adjacent locations. Mind you, I have some colour vision deficiencies, which is partially to blame.

I lost a few times at the 18 point mark because I didn't realise I needed the firing frequency upgrade to maintain Kapping the emitters. Even if it's because of a player error wasting 18 minutes of hard work naturally builds up frustration. Having saved games would have significantly reduced my "downs" for this map. Looking forward to CW2! It is only thanks to UpperKEES in chat, pushing me in various ways, that I didn't abandon this map early and I'm thankful for that. Following his hints made the gameplay much tidier and I was much happier when I played those 18 minutes again and I started enjoying myself.

My turning point with the map was when I realised that your mortars are "controlling" up to 4 deep pools of creeper. An extra mortar on the same or a different island that targets pools already targeted by other mortars is almost no help. This might have been obvious to most people, but when it dawned on me that this is the case, I understood the map much better and was able to devise my own strategy. (I hope this isn't too spoilery, or I'll be glad to remove it.)

Unfortunately (for me) Kapoios showed me in chat yesterday that because of the above it's possible to complete the map just before 15 minutes by using the strategy I was trying to prevent: a speed run with mortars (and some drone support). This proves how hard it is to create a map that's still reasonably doable, but can't be pwned (because I consider a time below 18 minutes faster than intended). I guess I shouldn't have tried to please everyone at the same time.... :-\

I'm not sure my strategy is what you were trying to prevent. Reducing the time milestones to 8-14 would not make my strategy impossible. You would have to reduce the times so much that it would also make the intended solution impossible. My drone is only used once to "conquer" the bottom right island which turns out to be very tricky and I use blasters to control some of the pools.

You mention "pwning" of the map, but you shouldn't be so hard on yourself. The map remains interesting and hard even with my strategy. It's extremely hard to design a map that only allows a certain solution, especially when it is a long one, where things become chaotic and unpredictable.

I played your earlier map a bit, The Artist, of which this one is a remake. It turns out that my strategy doesn't work so well there, though I only tried once. Massive improvements, by the way. Both in the gameplay and the aesthetics.

Thanks very much, KEES, for this map!



UpperKEES

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Reply #28 on: November 29, 2010, 05:35:55 pm
First of all, great map, KEES. It certainly is an extremely hard battle. And a very pretty picture! It gave me a few days of a style of gameplay, a long, hard, non-trivial battle that I had never been exposed to before. It is a gem of its style combining all sorts of gameplay elements, most important being using smart locations for weapons. Efficient energy use, albeit very important in the map, comes second to putting your weapons at good places, and I really like that.

Thanks Kap! :)

My experience with it had its ups and downs. My first reaction (except the initial "hey, this is very pretty") was that I was irritated by the colouring of the various elements that wouldn't let me understand what's going on with just looking. Luckily, this doesn't go to extremes. At least you can tell which one is higher of two adjacent locations. Mind you, I have some colour vision deficiencies, which is partially to blame.

Yeah, good that you tell me. I would never had thought of that. Most of the time when I played this map it was just the question: is this island above or below creeper level? The elevation actualyy didn't matter that much. Only when you and Kam (Gaara) started playing and mentioned this in chat I realized that some people might actually try to build on the lower elevations until they gained some experience with this map. My future maps won't be using such abundant colors, so you should be okay. It's just that colors and art go hand in hand, so this series couldn't be grey.

I lost a few times at the 18 point mark because I didn't realise I needed the firing frequency upgrade to maintain Kapping the emitters. Even if it's because of a player error wasting 18 minutes of hard work naturally builds up frustration. Having saved games would have significantly reduced my "downs" for this map. Looking forward to CW2! It is only thanks to UpperKEES in chat, pushing me in various ways, that I didn't abandon this map early and I'm thankful for that. Following his hints made the gameplay much tidier and I was much happier when I played those 18 minutes again and I started enjoying myself.

Glad to hear that, but you're right: I've wished for that save functionality myself many times in the past!

My turning point with the map was when I realised that your mortars are "controlling" up to 4 deep pools of creeper. An extra mortar on the same or a different island that targets pools already targeted by other mortars is almost no help. This might have been obvious to most people, but when it dawned on me that this is the case, I understood the map much better and was able to devise my own strategy. (I hope this isn't too spoilery, or I'll be glad to remove it.)

No, that fine. The Artist was especially designed for the use of mortars, because blasters are much better on most maps. They only turned out to be too effective and I still haven't solved that completely obviously. That's okay though, as it still turns out to be rather hard for most people.

I'm not sure my strategy is what you were trying to prevent. Reducing the time milestones to 8-14 would not make my strategy impossible. You would have to reduce the times so much that it would also make the intended solution impossible. My drone is only used once to "conquer" the bottom right island which turns out to be very tricky and I use blasters to control some of the pools.

Well, I was trying to force to use of mortars instead of many blasters, but in such a way that you would still need to cap the emitters on the way to the totems. A nice balance between the two. This would require you to build on the lower elevations as well, but only after isolating them first.

You mention "pwning" of the map, but you shouldn't be so hard on yourself. The map remains interesting and hard even with my strategy. It's extremely hard to design a map that only allows a certain solution, especially when it is a long one, where things become chaotic and unpredictable.

Yep, that's actually what I like: not being able to overview all possibilities from the start and applying the one and only solution. I still think I should have increased the emitters earlier, but maybe only you and me would have finished it, so I'm happy the way it is now.

I played your earlier map a bit, The Artist, of which this one is a remake. It turns out that my strategy doesn't work so well there, though I only tried once. Massive improvements, by the way. Both in the gameplay and the aesthetics.

Didn't work? Oh weird. I guess those 3 extra upgrades do make a difference then.

Thanks very much, KEES, for this map!

Thank you for playing! (Especially considering you're not that fond of long fights....)

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RichieRich

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Reply #29 on: November 29, 2010, 06:25:18 pm


Kees, until you mentioned double time in relaiton to the puzzle map I didnt know it existed.  :P

I love it.

Yep, it can be convenient in certain cases, see here, but it can also make you play hasty and badly.



So true about the sloppy play. I found it was very useful in trying different starts here to find the route that suited me best. I was basically 2/3 finished at 30 mins - all the energy and the bottom half of the map closed down and should have stopped the double time as I really wasted loads just faffing around instead of concentrating.

Will go back and do it again properly.

But notwithstanding the potential for sloppyness, I think the double time is perfect for restarting your maps where the start is usually tough and the increasing intensities pretty much guarantees failure if you try to push it. You know, that horrible place where suddenly the deficit goes up and you start going backwards. Restarting a map after failing a good bit into it can be a bit daunting and this makes it easier.