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GoatLord

Paying a team to create a mod. Is it practical?

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Like most Americans I throw money away at whatever impulse bites me first. This is an idea that's been floating around in my head, but never got around to manifesting itself in the slightest until now. Basically, I'm thinking of paying a team of mappers to do what I don't have the skill to do. Is this crazy?

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Doesn't sound crazy to me unless one has some sort of religious fetish for money - afterall, money is just a way to trade goods and services.

I'm doubtful you could hire a full team considering the time it takes to map, though.

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Depending on what you pay I'm sure you'd get a team together but it would probably end in tears. I doubt I personally would get involved but I would be interested to see how it turned out.

If I came into a large sum of money I'd put up a big cash prize for a best map competition just to see what some of the best mappers here could do if cash was an incentive -- but that's just a fantasy...

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This idea gets tossed around from time to time. There's nothing fundamentally wrong with it, but the problem is that whoever's offering to pay mappers will almost certainly undervalue their effort, which is insulting, and it's also likely that mappers will undervalue their own skills by accepting low pay, which is really just as bad.

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Well, if you have money burning a hole in your pocket, you could promote a competition for the best mod and put up prizes. Computer parts, software, books etc would be good items. And to make it fair, to find the "best" mod could be done in two ways:

1. The vote is open only to you. After all, you know what you like and it is your money.
2. Everybody has one opportunity to cast a vote.

However, since there are so many prevailing likes for various ports, method 2 would not really produce a true 'Best Mod' result.

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Kappes Buur said:

Well, if you have money burning a hole in your pocket, you could promote a competition for the best mod and put up prizes. Computer parts, software, books etc would be good items. And to make it fair, to find the "best" mod could be done in two ways:

1. The vote is open only to you. After all, you know what you like and it is your money.
2. Everybody has one opportunity to cast a vote.

However, since there are so many prevailing likes for various ports, method 2 would not really produce a true 'Best Mod' result.


Speaking of contests, it's been a while since one has been held. Usually we have done one at NewDoom/The Abyss every summer, but we didn't do it this year unfortunately. :(

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Creaphis said:

This idea gets tossed around from time to time. There's nothing fundamentally wrong with it, but the problem is that whoever's offering to pay mappers will almost certainly undervalue their effort, which is insulting, and it's also likely that mappers will undervalue their own skills by accepting low pay, which is really just as bad.



Most mappers map for free just for fun, so if they're already making maps for those purposes, getting a little bit of extra cash for their efforts sounds pretty golden. But depending on how good the mappers are (probably very talented if they're a part of the project) and how picky the project funder/manager is, there could be a dispute with the final product. What the funder needs to keep in mind is that it's basically an experiment.

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I've also wondered what other's opinions on commission maps would be, though never really went as far as making a topic about it.

Though prizes for competitions makes a bit more sense- much like if a few members put some money together and dish in to buy computer parts- a new GPU for winning, and cheaper prizes for 2nd and 3rd~

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I once dreamed of being able to be payed for the maps i make for doom. I later realized that it contradicts much of what I love about Doom though. Doom mapping is a hobby to me. It's an easy to use tool that enables me to create what I want to play. I don't need money as an incentive to do better as much as my own desire to play something new and exciting.

Also good leadership skills and a unique and fun idea that is fueled by the likes of the community are probably also about as effective as a cash flow would be

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Use3D said:

10 cents per vertex, take it or leave it.

I wonder if Bill Gates could afford Sunder.

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Wow, where is all the hate that I received when I asked this question?

FuzzballFox said:

Though prizes for competitions makes a bit more sense- much like if a few members put some money together and dish in to buy computer parts- a new GPU for winning, and cheaper prizes for 2nd and 3rd~

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I like the competition idea. You make as clear and compelling a description of what you want, and then you get to project you like the most. One benefit this has over paying someone directly, is that you will get many projects as a result of a competition--whereas if you pay a team directly--you only get one project. But I suppose you'll have more control over the end result if you are paying a team directly.

FuzzballFox said:

I've also wondered what other's opinions on commission maps would be, though never really went as far as making a topic about it.

If Hellbent poses the question there is an overwhelmingly sour response.

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Hellbent said:

Wow, where is all the hate that I received when I asked this question?

Probably with the $5 you suggested chipping in for what typically equals hundreds of hours of work...

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The reason I'm actually willing to offer money for something like this is because I have ideas in my head that are really cool, but I just can't understand Doom mapping. I have the skill to make the music and textures/sprites, as well as drawing up specific details for the maps, but not the actual contstruction of the maps themselves. I come up with these really grand ideas--like turning Cannibal Corpse songs and album covers into levels, making maps out of the Doom 1 intermission screens, highly surreal maps playing on doom's abstract simplicity, or creating a more "accurate" version of Doom--but I don't have the talent to put it all together. Rather than a contest, I would rather pay a team to basically create something to my specifications, while I would be contributing music, art and layout design. It would be a pay job because I think it would encourage mappers and coders to basically put my vision together instead of theirs. I would be totally willing to pay by the hour.

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esselfortium said:

Probably with the $5 you suggested chipping in for what typically equals hundreds of hours of work...

I explained the principle behind that. If 1 person offers $5 it's meaningless. If 200 people offer $5, maybe it's worth someone's time.

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Been thinking more about this competition now, anyone else actually interested?

I'm no awesome project leader, but I'm sure there are well known members here that could organize an yearly event? Maybe set over a couple of weeks, the aim being to make a multi-map Wad (maybe even a whole Megawad!) in the spirit of CC or Zpack.
A theme could be given, maps made and a voting / judge system could help determin the top 3 maps which would be awarded with prizes!

May bring in new blood to the scene too~

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Money honestly isn't always a good incentive to get people to do things, especially not in regards to depth and quality.

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Unidoom is for hire. We have an accomplished résumé, a plethora of references, and can help bring your ideas to life. We offer the most competitive price points around. Get in touch!

-Ralphis
President, Unidoom

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Hellbent's old thread:

Use3D said:

My fee is 20 cents per vertex.


Now this thread:

Use3D said:

10 cents per vertex, take it or leave it.


Recession hits Doom mapping; vertex prices at an all-time low.

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Gez said:

Recession hits Doom mapping; vertex prices at an all-time low.


But you gotta take the advances in the manufacturing process into account: a vertex laid out with e.g. DEU in 1994 was much, much more expensive than the same vertex laid out with Doombuilder 2 in 2010, at least in terms of effort. Somethink like DV II or Sunder would take literally years to make.

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Not to mention building nodes was a chore and now it takes a couple of seconds.

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40oz said:

Not to mention building nodes was a chore and now it takes a couple of seconds.


I never got that part, TBQH. I recall building nodes in DEU with DEUBSP took 2-3 seconds on a 486DX/40, for typically sized maps of the day. And considering that the nodebuilding process is based on binary partitioning, its complexity must grow much less than linearly with the increase in map size (perhaps logarithmically).

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Not crazy no. I don't see any problem with someone wanting to get paid for thier work. But that's only one thing.
The problem I do see is that there is no real benefit for the one who is paying theese people. Knowing that it'd probably not settle too well with Id Software if someone is selling levels/mods for thier game. Which AFAIK, is under copyright law.

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I would do it, especially at an "each linedef costs 5 cents per mapunit" rate.

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