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Rules of thumb for multiplayer starts and things?

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For people who can't easily test their maps on multiplayer, are there rules of thumb of where it's the best to place deathmatch starts? 


Also how many multiplayer specific monsters to place for coop? I see, from my AutoDoom experience, that coop most of the time is a cakewalk, except for certain wads like BTSX E1 which are specifically prepared for coop, where the difficulty spikes massively, so if you die (like the bot often does), your game is very much doomed and you need to restart.

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DM players aren't going to play your SP/Coop maps, so don't worry about that too much. Maps not designed for and tested in DM are generally unsuitable for DM player regardless of where you place starts. 


For items that everyone really should have -- e.g. backpacks, berserk packs, essential armors -- place enough so that four players can grab it. A lot of maps will duplicate health spheres too, so that everyone can get them -- not necessary in easier maps, but it can be done if you value that for the experience. Add a good amount of bonus ammo in places where everyone should or would want to pick lots of ammo up, but the SP placement might make it difficult. Weapons aren't a source of ammo, because in coop you can only pick up one of each, so if SP gives the player ammo through shotgunner corpses, you're going to want to add MP shellboxes too.  Maps will sometimes place weapons at the start for accommodating coop with multiple or unlimited lives, especially when getting all those weapons would otherwise require lots of running around the map.  


As far as monsters, I'd just look for spots to make stuff more enjoyable for teamwork, rather than adhering to a formula. If a map is nonlinear and allows everyone to take their own path, you probably won't have to add much, outside of more stuff in the open interstitial spaces. The combined DPS of many players can be fairly high, so extra fodder and bulk can often help. Monsters with simple attack patterns are good for playing on servers with high latency, for fights that would otherwise go by in a flash with many players where you don't necessarily want to increase the difficulty. Viles are more exploitable with multiple players, due to their automatic target switching and very slow attack (two players teaming up with a SSG can kill one harmlessly with no cover), so adding more can work. MP will also sometimes introduce new monster 'roles' rather than bulking existing placements (for example ledge snipers where none existed, or fliers, or monsters in unoccupied spaces), so that players can specialize within an area.

Anyway, there aren't really any hard and fast rules. The layout and structure of a map is what's most important. A good SP map with no MP placements is going to be more fun than a map consisting of lots of 64-wide hallways with a dedicated MP mode. It's also important to avoid MP-only gamebreakers where one player can die past a point of no return and leave no way for players behind them to make progress. Any time a lock-in or a barrier is created along a mandatory progression line where none existed before, it's a good idea to make sure that it won't lead to problems if a player dies. That can be as simple as opening up a MP teleporter into the lock-in (Sunlust does this occasionally) or allowing the barrier to open from behind.

Edited by rdwpa

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Have to second that, Decay is the fucking Rainman of DM gameplay, every time I've taken his advice it's improved the gameplay of my maps.


There are some items you should pretty much never place in your DM maps because they make it totally lame:

  • Invulnerability
  • Invisibility
  • Megasphere

There are also some items that can be used, but should only be placed very sparingly. A max of one per map, really. If you're not sure where to put it - don't put it in at all. They are:

  • Blue Armor
  • Soulsphere
  • To a lesser extent, the BFG9000

Regarding spawns, try to have at least a little distance between them. About 6-7 DM spawns per map is plenty (more than 8 is total overkill). Try not to place spawns in the middle of a walkway or in a dead end - Having multiple choices for where to go as you spawn is always preferred. One thing I cannot stress enough: Always arm the player directly at the spawn point because fucking around with the pistol as you spawn and dying as a result is incredibly irritating.


Suitable weapons to spawn the player with include:

  • Super Shotgun (always preferred, if you're not sure what to hand out, make it an SSG)
  • Shotgun
  • Rocket Launcher (but not in tight spaces!)
  • Plasma Gun (but not in super wide-open spaces!)

The chaingun is usually annoying to spawn with as it has nowhere near the blast power of the aforementioned weapons; you're almost guaranteed to end up dead when your opponents have a shotgun, RL or plasma. On larger maps it's acceptable as you have a moment to get your bearings before diving into battle. Same deal with the BFG. Never spawn the player with a Chainsaw or a lone berserk kit unless you want them to delete your wad and never play it again in a fit of nerd rage.


Finally, avoid having weapons (particularly annoying bullshit like the chainsaw) sitting out in the middle of the thoroughfare. Many servers enforce the "switch on pickup" DMflag, and while learning to avoid guns you don't want is a skill worth honing, it's still a pain in the neck being forced to switch guns against your will, particularly in a decisive moment of the round.


As rdwpa said, there are no hard and fast rules, but these pointers should definitely help to make your DM map more enjoyable for the masses.

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Remember that the voodoo doll "scripts" is not working in deathmatches, because there is no player 1 starts appeared (Boom format). As example in this case better to add alternate paths, exits, e.t.c. if you want map works both coop and dm.

P.S. Autodoom with bots sometimes lagging (Manor from Master Levels for example).

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Find a suitable area in the middle of your map, set it to be the "dm area" of the map. Preferably an interesting area that is the "heart" of your map and not too big.

Construct the map so that this area is blocked off when playing deathmatch. Put a few linedef near the coop starts that open up the dm area when you're not playing deathmatch. This can often be bolted on as an after thought on most maps. Put weapons in alcoves or places which get closed off when playing non-dm.

Here are some easy examples of how to do this in Doom 2.

Map06: Designate the exit area as the DM room. Have the entryway to this one opened up only from the outside, same with the extra stairs to the start area.
Map16: Wall off an area of the map, have the walls lower when you exit the first building in single player.
Map29: The initial lowering floor also opens up the teleport to the narrow stairs. Put a few strategic walls in the blood to limit the play area in dm.

One can easily find and build a suitable dm arena in most maps, especially if the map is designed with this in mind. I am not a fan of completely separate dm areas, I prefer to play in the single player map, ideally with the rest of the map as scenery.

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On mardi 22 mai 2018 at 2:13 PM, riderr3 said:

Remember that the voodoo doll "scripts" is not working in deathmatches, because there is no player 1 starts appeared (Boom format). As example in this case better to add alternate paths, exits, e.t.c. if you want map works both coop and dm.

It's possible to have teleports that only work in netplay by giving the multiplayer-only flag to the teleport destinations.


In Boom you can even have different teleport destinations for single, coop and DM.

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