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Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

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Quartz

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Posts: 843

Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2010 12:14 am

Location: Commie California

Post Tue Feb 28, 2017 6:22 pm

Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

I'm making a list, checking it twice. Gonna find out what's good and what's a novelty.

Soooo I noticed even after sifting through and deleting some of my crappier maps, my Pleaides database still has a good 72 maps (and counting) associated with my username. Frankly, that's enough to give anyone a headache, and I'd rather save people the trouble.

The objective of this list is to sort out what's a novelty, what's a good map, and what's a great map -- "the good, the okay, and the novelty" -- yes, I'll spare you the bad maps -- Additionally, I'll list the gametype and suggest how many players it's good for. Of course, some of these details are subjective -- what I might consider a great map, another might consider garbage! I am perfectly open to discussing such things. I like being critiqued, and I don't want to waste peoples' time with a dysfunctional list.

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Bitmatch
==========================

The Good
Bar Fight -- FFA Bitmatch -- 3-6 players
Did My Time -- FFA Bitmatch -- 3-5 players

The Okay
Intermissive -- FFA Bitmatch -- 2-3 players
Silicosis -- FFA Bitmatch -- 3-6 players
Nuts and Bolts -- FFA Bitmatch -- 3-6 players +levelgen
Levelgen simply provides a dodgy, moving health item in the center.
Cure for the Itch -- FFA Bitmatch -- 3-6 players

The Novelty
Search and Destroy -- 2-Team Bitmatch -- 4-12 players
Each player gets one life. A server admin must reset the map once a team wins, but it's pretty functional and makes for some very competitive, play-it-safe Bitfighter.
Ampitheatre of Death -- FFA Bitmatch -- 2-5 players
Knock people out of the small arena for them to die horribly. Trouble is dying horribly is -1 point, so reaching the time limit with the least-negative score is basically the only way to win.
Ampitheatre of Despair -- FFA Bitmatch -- 2-5 players
Knock people out of the small arena for them to be irrevocably trapped, lending themselves to an easy kill. Full disclosure, this map is a total rip-off of a similar Invader Alex map.

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Capture the Flag
==========================

The Good
Pixel Stream -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-8 players

The Okay
CTF-Compass -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-6 players
To Maze or Not to Maze -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-8 players
So Close Yet So Far -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-8 players

The Novelty
Snow Castles -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-8 players +levelgen
My attempt to end the Castles cancer I started with a definitive map. Unfortunately, sam686's blizzard levelgen broke, and the map is no longer fun or interesting, nor will it be until it is fixed. For those unfamiliar, the point of "Castles" maps is to use the Engineer module A LOT.
Easter Egg Hunt -- 2-Team CTF -- 4-8 players
There are hostile flags for either team to capture littered about the arena, but each team can of course still steal the other team's flag either for scoring purposes or to block them from scoring.

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Core
==========================

The Good
Progressive -- 2-Team Core -- 4-8 players
Launchpad McQuack -- 3-Team Core -- 6-9 players

The Okay
Inca -- 2-Team Core -- 4-8 players +levelgen
The levelgen simply opens up a teleporter shortcut once the attackers have progressed to the final core.
Tarnished Sentry -- 2-Team Core -- 6-10 players
Team Colosseum -- 2-Team Core -- 4-10 players
Edited from an original Zap! map.

The Novelty
SUPER NEON CHESS VERSION 9001 -- 2-Team Core -- 4-8 players +levelgen
It's a parody of an over decade-old map and a total eyesore. People have taken it seriously because the lineitem art is actually decent, but don't let that fool you -- this is rather intentionally a completely awful map. The levelgen periodically provides a series of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone quotes.

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Hold the Flag
==========================

The Good
Maya -- 2-Team HTF -- 2-6 players

The Okay
Firefight -- 3-Team HTF -- 6-9 players
Around the Bend -- 2-Team HTF -- 6-10 players
WATERMELONS EVERYWHERE! -- 2-Team HTF -- 4-6 players

The Novelty
Head in the Clouds -- 2-Team HTF -- 6-10 players +levelgen
The cage in the middle slows players down while they're traversing through it.

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Nexus
==========================

The Good
Mini-Colosseum -- FFA Nexus -- 4-8 players
Edited from an original Zap! map.
Bag of Cats -- FFA Nexus -- 4-10 players

The Okay
Forest of Fear -- FFA Nexus -- 3-7 players
Deathmints -- FFA Nexus -- 3-6 players

The Novelty
I threw the maps you're all thinking of into the "break maps" category.

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Rabbit
==========================

The Good
Paragon -- FFA Rabbit -- 4-6 players

The Okay
Wrath of the Rabid Chipmunk -- FFA Rabbit -- 3-6 players

The Novelty
Nothing here.

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Retrieve
==========================

The Good
Surfing with the Alien -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-8 players
Aztec -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-8 players

The Okay
They Call Me Crazy -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-10 players
Bubblegum Wars II -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-10 players
Battle of the Bananas -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-8 players
Twofer -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-6 players
Pathetic Humans -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-8 players
Clover -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 4-8 players

The Novelty
Trail by Fire -- 2-Team Retrieve -- 6-10 players
Teleporter delays and traversing inside walls. It plays decently competitively for a novelty map, however.

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Soccer
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The Good
Spooning Leads to Forking -- 2-Team Soccer -- 4-6 players
Distort -- 2-Team Soccer -- 4-8 players

The Okay
Nothing here.

The Novelty
Nothing here.

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Zone Control
==========================

The Good
Bubblegum Wars -- 2-Team ZC -- 4-8 players
Quintessential Crisis -- 2-Team ZC -- 4-8 players

The Okay
Snail World -- 2-Team ZC -- 4-10 players
Clean Shot -- 2-Team ZC -- 6-10 players +levelgen
The script causes line items to change team colors upon the capturing of zones.

The Novelty
V-Day 2k13 -- 2-Team ZC -- 2-6 players
It's one of those "walk everywhere with the flag once and you win" zone control maps.
Last edited by Quartz on Mon Mar 13, 2017 12:18 am, edited 4 times in total.
Exploits of Quartz and bobdaduck - My maps on Pleiades
Current self-serving quote:
raptor wrote:sometimes I think getting Quartz to use plugins is like getting my mom to use a computer
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Quartz

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Posts: 843

Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2010 12:14 am

Location: Commie California

Post Tue Feb 28, 2017 6:23 pm

Re: Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

==========================
Dungeon
==========================

The Bad
Quartz' Super Fast Mini Dungeon -- 1-Team Dungeon -- 1-2 players
This map would be quite generic, but the top challenge is actually hard and beating the time limit is actually difficult without being impossible.
QuartzDaDuckgeon -- 2-Team Dungeon -- 2-16 players
It's a decent competitive dungeon. Stupid but actually kind of fun if you have company.
Adventure -- 2-Team Dungeon -- 1-10 players
You don't need competition for this map, but it's a lot less lonely that way. The first half is actually pretty fun, with the second team having the ability to send you on a wild goose chase. The second half is standard dungeon-fare.

The Badder
Yellow Snow -- 1-Team Dungeon -- 1-4 players
It's a linear dungeon.
Q-Emperor's Revenge -- 2-Team Dungeon -- 2-12 players
It's a semi-decent competitive dungeon with too many turrets, but "too many turrets" is what makes it a so-called "emperor's revenge," so deal with it.
Quartz' 2nd Mini Dungeon -- 1-Team Dungeon -- 1-6 players
This is actually a decently challenging dungeon, but it's tedious and probably the most frustrating one out there.
Adventure II -- 2-Team Dungeon -- 4-8 players
It's anything but intuitive, but this semi-competitive dungeon is fun as a filler map while half of your Bitfighter party is taking a bathroom break.

The Ugly
35x5 -- 2-Team Dungeon -- 2-4 players
This map is obscenely bad. One challenge is tedious and the other a simple bit of memorization. The "useless" team has the opportunity to nab the win from the other at the end.
Quartz' Mini Dungeon -- 1-Team Dungeon -- 1-3 players
Challenge #2 is actually semi-difficult and potentially breaks the map. Everything else is awful.

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Miscellaneous
==========================

Artistic Maps
Pixel Art - Beta
A bit of pixel art done from reference.

Rollercoasters
Carnival Coaster

Break Maps
STARGATE!! -- FFA Nexus -- 3-7 players
I made some art from reference and wanted to make a semi-functional map to go with it for a contest.
Bisexual Speed Dating -- FFA Nexus -- 2-4 players
I don't do drugs, I promise.
Transexual Speed Dating -- FFA Nexus -- 3-7 players
This isn't helping my case, is it?
Battle of the Satanists -- 2-Team ZC -- 2-5 players
It's thematic and mildly amusing.
Fireworks Show -- 6-Team Bitmatch -- 1-12 players +levelgen
Seizure warning. I actually mean that.
Last edited by Quartz on Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Exploits of Quartz and bobdaduck - My maps on Pleiades
Current self-serving quote:
raptor wrote:sometimes I think getting Quartz to use plugins is like getting my mom to use a computer
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Fordcars

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Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 3:51 pm

Location: Some city, somewhere

Post Sat Mar 04, 2017 5:38 pm

Re: Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

Simply awesome
skybax: Why is this health pack following me?
bobdaduck: uh, it likes you.
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sky_lark

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Posts: 1847

Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 6:00 pm

Location: North Carolina

Post Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:09 pm

Re: Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

Paragon (rabbit) is fantastic. So entertaining for such a small level. Nice to see a rabbit map that can be played with low numbers without needing or even wanting bots. Hope to see more of it going forward.

Quintessential Crisis (zone control), your new level, is super fun with balanced, competitive teams. Zone control with a lot of zones is interesting because it almost feels like a hard three-flag retrieve level, which are fun but rarely played because they're so impossible. Zone control with a lot of zones on the other hand feels like it has an attainable goal, so it gets that enjoyment of super competitiveness without the impossibility of winning.

Watermelons Everywhere is underrated and underplayed. Perhaps its quirky art style makes folks not take it too seriously, but it's really a quality level that uses a bottleneck really smartly. Hold the Flag in general is such an interesting mode (not always best to go for all of the flags) and this level utilizes it well.

So Close Yet So Far is an interesting level. Probably one of the few times I give negative feedback. It's just so easy to camp after a score. I'll give you props, it was fun coming up with a strategy for how best to camp (let them go through the base laser and actually get the flag, making their retreat near impossible). But in a competitive game, after that first score it becomes very easy to repair and camp. I like the overall theme of this map so it would be cool to see reworked.

Bar Fight remains one of the pinnacle bitmatch levels. Most bitmatch levels tend to be super plain. This has a fun theme to it with plenty of creative obstacles that make playing it enjoyable, not just competitive. Easily among the top 5 bitmatch of all time.

Bubblegum Wars II is an example of how brutally difficult retrieves are with three or more flags. There is an interesting mechanic in trying to time the game to score as many flags as possible when time runs out, but other than that much of the round is spent trading flags back and forth. Would love to see this level reworked to be a bit easier to score as its clean aesthetic design is really fun to look at.
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Quartz

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Location: Commie California

Post Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:16 pm

Re: Quartz' Map List, 2017 Edition

sky_lark wrote:Paragon (rabbit) is fantastic. So entertaining for such a small level. Nice to see a rabbit map that can be played with low numbers without needing or even wanting bots. Hope to see more of it going forward.

Thanks man, glad you like it! Judging from what you've said, I accomplished everything I meant to in making it, so success!!

sky_lark wrote:Quintessential Crisis (zone control), your new level, is super fun with balanced, competitive teams. Zone control with a lot of zones is interesting because it almost feels like a hard three-flag retrieve level, which are fun but rarely played because they're so impossible. Zone control with a lot of zones on the other hand feels like it has an attainable goal, so it gets that enjoyment of super competitiveness without the impossibility of winning.

Yeah, it's definitely a little more difficult than I intended. Glad you enjoy its ultra-competitiveness though.
I didn't have this uploaded yet, but this seems like a good of a time as any to do so. It is now on the list.
Quintessential Crisis

sky_lark wrote:Watermelons Everywhere is underrated and underplayed. Perhaps its quirky art style makes folks not take it too seriously, but it's really a quality level that uses a bottleneck really smartly. Hold the Flag in general is such an interesting mode (not always best to go for all of the flags) and this level utilizes it well.

Aww well thanks. I definitely wasn't very serious in making it, but I wasn't intentionally making a garbage map either. I just wanted to make an hourglass-shaped level with a prominent bottleneck and it turned out OK. Glad you like it!

sky_lark wrote:So Close Yet So Far is an interesting level. Probably one of the few times I give negative feedback. It's just so easy to camp after a score. I'll give you props, it was fun coming up with a strategy for how best to camp (let them go through the base laser and actually get the flag, making their retreat near impossible). But in a competitive game, after that first score it becomes very easy to repair and camp. I like the overall theme of this map so it would be cool to see reworked.
You can say it, it's a good concept with a rather awful execution. It's actually near the top of my mind on potential re-works, so I'm glad to see you're interested in seeing it reworked.

sky_lark wrote:Bar Fight remains one of the pinnacle bitmatch levels. Most bitmatch levels tend to be super plain. This has a fun theme to it with plenty of creative obstacles that make playing it enjoyable, not just competitive. Easily among the top 5 bitmatch of all time.

I remember being totally shocked at how consistently well it plays. It's not that I didn't put thought into it, it just turned out better than expected! Happily so. Thanks! :)

sky_lark wrote:Bubblegum Wars II is an example of how brutally difficult retrieves are with three or more flags. There is an interesting mechanic in trying to time the game to score as many flags as possible when time runs out, but other than that much of the round is spent trading flags back and forth. Would love to see this level reworked to be a bit easier to score as its clean aesthetic design is really fun to look at.
Yeah, real talk, I should probably make it three flags. I want it to be a little difficult to get a touchdown rather than the two-flag scoring madness, but four is ridiculous. I'll keep than in mind if I ever get to reworking it, and thanks for all the feedback!!
Edit: It has three flags now. It may still be a crap map, but it should be better now at least.

UPDATE: Holy CRAPOLA you guys, Easter Egg Hunt works now!! I had the epiphany to use hostile flags instead of neutral ones and what do you know, the concept works now! Why I didn't think of this before is beyond me. Enjoy!
Exploits of Quartz and bobdaduck - My maps on Pleiades
Current self-serving quote:
raptor wrote:sometimes I think getting Quartz to use plugins is like getting my mom to use a computer

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