The Ultimate DooMer said:
The issue with multiplayer is that any wad that comes out first for a given gamemode and remains the only wad around for months/years afterwards is going to achieve that regardless of quality, simply because it's the only thing for the elite competitors to play matches on.
I don't disagree in principle, but I don't think that's how things actually shake out. If you take 1v1 for example, there's only 1 map from doom2.wad (and notably none from doom.wad) in current competitive rotation.
I'm avoiding a huge post about maps because it's a surprisingly complicated subject, but suffice it to say we don't keep playing shitty maps just because they've been around the longest. It basically just doesn't happen, the outcry is too awful, and good maps are so much better than bad ones that bad ones disappear almost instantly.
Which is all to say that if ZDCTFMP maps were actually bad and just riding the wave of "first to the party", we would've traded them out ASAP for ZDCTFMP2/3, ZDUCTF, etc. etc. etc. (there are a lot of CTF WADs).
The Ultimate DooMer said:
There's plenty of dud maps in ZDCTF (around half of the original pack plus many from the sequel packs) and plenty of other decent CTF map packs around, but it's too ingrained in people's minds that ZDCTF is the only thing worth playing.
I won't argue that there are no shitty maps in ZDCTFMP, but I will argue that the ratio is far lower than in any other CTF WAD. It also set the competitive standard in CTF for years, something no other CTF WAD could conceivably do, even were we granted the power to change history. For example, "Exophase" (MAP03) is easy to control if you spam a team's (only) SSG with rockets, therefore it's very important to prevent your opponent from doing that via controlling the RL room, and doubling back when your defense or respawning teammates say "HELP SPAM!". This dynamic basically doesn't exist in 32in24-4, and it's precisely because "Exophase" rewards this and other high-level team cooperation that it was selected as a Masterbowl map.
I also hear the whole, "urgh, this map is SOOOOOO derivative of ZDCTF". I can appreciate the drive to advance the state of mapping, in fact I think it's great as it's brought us some amazing standout maps in 32in24-4 (and other WADs). But we're kidding ourselves if we don't admit that the quest to leave our shameful ZDCTF past behind us has ironically led to some truly shameful maps (I am looking at you, "Burn It With Fire"). There are worse things than imitating great maps, and honestly I think working within the nuance - tweaking an existing map to push it over the edge into a great map - is just as viable a strategy as trying to coming up with a whole new CTF dynamic.