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Roofi

A mapper runs out of ideas just after drawing the first sector.

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It happened to me recently, i was making a map, i finished doing a room and then my mind just run out of ideas and i don't know what to do.

Im considering either abandon it and start a new one, or try to finish it.

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10 minutes ago, Danzer said:

Im considering either abandon it and start a new one, or try to finish it.

 

Those are the only two options no? Might as well try and finish something if you had the idea in the first place. Unless it's a lost cause.

 

"mind running out of ideas" is one thing but a mapper will never reasonably finish anything if they only wait for inspiration to strike. Inspiration is one thing but when you are making a map and maybe have to move around dozens of textures and lines then it seems more like work. What do you do when you don't feel inspired at work? You just do it. There is no magic wizard light bulb that will guide you through, if you can't think of anything just make shapes with lines until you get an idea again. Unless you're making some unique Doom map that's never been seen before then you have tons of layout ideas to go back on. After the room comes the door, after the door is the hallway, after the hallway IS THE ETERNAL ABYSS. ABANDON ALL HOPE YE WHO SEEK TO MAKE LEVELS. IT IS A PIT OF DARKNESS AND DESPAIR.

 

Actually no, it's kind of fun, you just have to not take it too seriously or the weight of disappointment will crush you forever.. The best way to not make a map is close the editor.

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Erhm... no, actually, my name is not Brandon...

...ouch, this felt a bit too familiar.

 

Adding to the thoughts above:

The best way to finish a map is to make it actual work. Decide to work on it, even when you don't feel like it. Never have a zero-hours work day. Make a habit of it. At least x minutes/hours per day.

 

Now, if I could only follow that advice myself, I could finally finish this amazing, ultra-great, epic idea I had...

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13 minutes ago, DuckReconMajor said:

Finish a map by the end of the week.

Are you telling me directly or is that more an open statement for the entire forum?

 

Yeah, you know... why not? If I put in the work from ~20:30 - 22:30, and plan it out properly, making sure not to scope too big, I could at least finish the parts I already drew up in Blender.

Tuesday, basic floor plan

Wednesday, figure out the elevator

Thursday, polish/details

Friday, put in items and monsters

 

Would not be super-impressive, but, yeah. It'd be playable.

Ok! I will finish a first draft of the map by Saturday.

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Brandon's experience gets a 94.4% approval rating from me for being so relatable.

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Mapping it's suppoused to be a fun experience, it can be stressful, i imagine it could be very stressful for mappers who invest a ton of time in large maps retouching areas, detailing, erasing entire sections to make something more fitting, changing linedefs types and sector effects, monster placement, reworking the entire layout, play testing it hundreds upon hundreds of times, etc. But in the end is suppoused to be for personal gratification and for other people to enjoy as well.

 

If you don't commit, your mind goes blank staring at the map grid, feel like it's a chore and not a passion project then you should change your approach to something you feel it might be more manegeable. Procrastination is where cool ideas and lifelong goals goes to die.

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This is why i draw map layouts on paper beforehand. Makes things SO much smoother. If i lack a concrete plan i completely falter. Also its a lot easier to undo mistakes on paper than in the editor. I dont know about everyone else but deleting sectors feels like killing my babies, its hard to do.

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1 hour ago, aletheos eberlain said:

Are you telling me directly or is that more an open statement for the entire forum?

 

Yeah, you know... why not? If I put in the work from ~20:30 - 22:30, and plan it out properly, making sure not to scope too big, I could at least finish the parts I already drew up in Blender.

Tuesday, basic floor plan

Wednesday, figure out the elevator

Thursday, polish/details

Friday, put in items and monsters

 

Would not be super-impressive, but, yeah. It'd be playable.

Ok! I will finish a first draft of the map by Saturday.

 

LOL I meant @Roofi but I love what you've done here. I look forward to it!

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Whenever I'm out of ideas, I grossly inflate the map's linedef count by micro-detailing previous rooms/areas. Add some supports to break up wall textures, stick computer monitors and/or goat heads into walls, and give those light sources a ridiculous number of gradients!

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I'm not a pro mapper or, to be honest, even a mapper. I haven't done a single map which I've been proud of and I'm pretty much Brandon. The default Spartan textures in the boring room that Doom Builder 2 starts by default actually has some kind of idea draining power/effect on me so I feel ya, I mean, Brandon.

 

But, as recommendation of the single time a good idea of a map has come to my head is to try to sketch something that you feel that has some of the feature of the game you like the most.

For example, I was thinking on doing a map similar to the style of Episode 1 of Ultimate Doom, and the things that I like the most are high platforms reachable somehow (at first you look up and don't have a clue on how to get there, but as you progress through the level, you find the way to reach that place), windows that show you that you can go outside, a raising elevator that may help you get from point A to point B and some secret placed in a smart location, or placed in front of your face but you need to search for the hidden switch to access it.

 

IMG_20200225_012903.jpg.f12e3ee725dc05e524ce949eeba87fed.jpg

IMG_20200225_012939.jpg.db92c1c687adff7946508bf908d6cc86.jpg

Try to add as many details as you can, so you can have a clear picture of what to do when you translate it into a map with Doom Builder.

I think most of the details that make the difference between a bad map and a good map are the rooms shapes and heights, walls textures, lights, decoration, item and monsters locations, etc.

And it's hard to figure out how all those things must fit in your masterpiece at first, but as all things in life, it's all about practice. This sort of things you can learn by trial and error.

 

I don't think the guys who made the Eviternity maps were new mappers that just had a great vision of aesthetics. It's likely that they have done already countless maps before those, and they started making mistakes, making simple maps, with boring textures, same heights rooms, bad located stuff, no decoration, stuff like that, and they kept making more and more maps, and experience did it's job.

 

I can't show you my progress on my map because I barely have any, and I haven't figured out anything yet. Not even the textures. It's a relief to be inspired in E1 of Doom because at least I can take a look around 9 maps and try to fetch that style, try to figure out what are the most used textures and where they are used.

Try to get inspired from a previously made map (if you like it's aesthetics) and shape it as your own imagination wants!

 

And last but not least, take a look a this:

At the very summary you (or Brandon) can already feel identified with your (his) mapping struggles, as probably most of the people who are not good mappers, and we are many! So, welcome to the club!

 

I hope this helps you in some way, or at least lifts your mood! Keep on trying!

Edited by SirJuicyLemon

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the first step is never telling yourself you're not a good mapper! I don't care what it is as long as it's not a terrywad someone out there might enjoy it and every map you finish is a step in the direction to finding your own personal style. Some people seem to get rained on with that kind of thing but for the rest of us it's a grind. Having a map that you can play from start to end is awesome I don't care what you say.

DO NOT TELL YOURSELF THAT YOU ARE BAD. MAKE STUFF AND THEN, AFTER THAT, MAKE MORE STUFF RAERJE:BRJAEBRFAE:RFBAEF

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Never map for awards/praises/to impress other people.

This will drain you very fast.

Don't look at these big megawads & think you could do the same. Do something that is unique in your skill.

Big megawads get a lot of praise but also a lot of criticism. Not many people love the flow of them.

 

Just make something & make sure it's playable. You learn as you map & will get ideas over time.

 

Or perhaps, put down some ideas of your wad & try them out. (location of where the wad takes place/what kind of atmosphere will it have/ is it going to be a base or any other place...)

Edited by The_SloVinator

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5 hours ago, The_SloVinator said:

Never map for awards/praises/to impress other people.

This will drain you very fast.

Don't look at these big megawads & think you could do the same. Do something that is unique in your skill.

Big megawads get a lot of praise but also a lot of criticism. Not many people love the flow of them.

 

Just make something & make sure it's playable. You learn as you map & will get ideas over time.

 

Or perhaps, put down some ideas of your wad & try them out. (location of where the wad takes place/what kind of atmosphere will it have/ is it going to be a base or any other place...)

 

PREACH!

 

I always found it a lot easier to finish something if I keep the scope of the project narrow and focus my ambition on specific things

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9 minutes ago, Maximum Matt said:

When in doubt, turn it into a slaughtermap.

This. Instant Cacoward

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I never like to compare my works to other mappers like Skillsaw for example. I'll just end like ''Dude this sucks'' I just do a map that I consider fun, then let other people play it so see if they consider it fun, it doesn't need to have an EPIC architecture or gorgeous visuals, just be fun.

 

Anyway I can relate to Brandon's story a lot, That is some deep shit.

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That's how I map I just start with a room and build on it and find ways to connect them interestingly later

 

I literally have no ideas until I get going with it hah hah

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