Let the earth and heavens tremble, for I have once again taken up the hammer, and shall forge with it a map to end all maps! Not really, but I am making a map, and with a purpose as well. See my university has assigned most of my workload this year to a project of my own choosing, and as I'm doing a games course I decided to do a level as my final project, partly because the other option is something like a 20 bazillion word instruction booklet about how to make games, but mostly because I haven't done it for a while and want to do it again. So to this end I am going to be keeping a running record of stuff I think is worth recording during the development, and seeing as I don't keep a diary because I am aware of how insane talking to myself makes me look, I figure I may as well blog about it here in a development thread. With that out of the way, on to the map itself: This is the basic layout. The map as you may guess from the title is set in a nuclear power plant. The two teams start in the yellow buildings in the northeast and southwest, and fight over the central buildings in order to cap all the opposing flags. There are five flags on the map, however I am going to see about turning flags on and off based on how many people are on the map. If I can do this I will start with the stations and the generator building, then open up the admin building and drainage canal as more players connect to the server. The key idea behind this map is scalability, given my last effort in mapping I'm sure everyone will be glad to know that this one should be a lot more scalable. If I can turn the flags on and off, the map should function as well as district on three flags, but on five should accomodate 64 players with ease, without needing to restart the server. Hopefully this will make the map a popular startup map. Flag layout is thus: The beneficial thing about this setup is that it allows players to fight from any flag to any other flag, more or less, each flag has at least three possible routes leading to and from it, with each being relatively dissimilar. Fighting between the stations and the generator building will be mostly interior, as the two wings of the generator building will be large enough to house plenty of obstacles and cover, the walls of the building also allow the possibility of elevated catwalks covering most of the combat arenas. meaning that height should come into play a lot. Between the central building and the stations should be mostly an outdoor industrial setting, with plenty of machinery and pipes to hide behind. The buildings here function as strong points, being the most elevated positions. Fighting here should be more two dimensional, but still quite dense, with small walls and obstacles giivng plenty of cover. Fighting in the canal should be more like empires classic, I hope to put some light vehicles in there and have enough room to let them move around, the walls of the canal will also be slanted or possibly a halfpipe of sorts, which should allow for some entertaining vehicle antics. The flag in the northwest should be located on a small elevated point inside a basin in the canal, meaning it will have to fend off vehicles from all sides, but the improved visibility will help spot threats. The canal is very flat with few changes in elevation, and will be a lot more sparse to facilitate vehicle combat, the use of vehicles also means that it may be possible to run from station to station and bypass the northwest flag, so players should be on watch for that. With regards to linearity, I'm not sure how it should be done. I am looking towards making all flags always cappable, but may introduce some degree of linear constraints, possibly requiring at least one station to be held in order to capture the generator building, but the linearity system in empires is kind of wobbly, so I might just make them all cappable all the time, unless I can hack it together with entity logic. The generator building is probably going to be the most detailed and if I can't get the flags to turn on and off, I will probably release a version focussing on the generator and the admin building. All in all this should be a fun infantry map with a bit of vehicle combat and excellent scalability. The map itself should not be very big, but it should be dense enough and with enough connections between buildings and routes of attack to make it work very well with a lot of players. I'll post updates as and when I have more to show. Oh and one other thing, it has to be finished in four weeks.