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Five steps on How to start a map

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30 minutes ago, 40oz said:

Your map looks like shit because its not done yet.

I've been telling myself this exact thing over and over again in the last 6 months. It's a great way to look at mapping. And one of the things I really like about Doom editing is how easy it is to just rip out a room and completely redo it.


Thanks for the tutorial. Great stuff!

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To this, if i may, i'd like to add the following, it probably doesn't fit the general idea of 40oz's thread but i figured i should add it here.


- Know your mapping limit, do not try to go for an amazingly detailed level on your first couple of tries at mapping.

- Don't be afraid to share your maps with the community, even if it's basic in design and detailing. Better to nail gameplay and good texturing rather than making an unbalanced, visual mess of a map.

- Accept criticism, no matter how harsh it might be, in a mature way. Do not be disheartened, people just wanna help you.

Optional: Don't be afraid to partake in community project, there seem to be a lot more projects that welcome new mappers. It's a good way to motivate yourself to map considering you'll be contributing to a group effort.


Now the first point is bolded simply because it varies greatly from a person to another. Some might be very meticulous with their work, even if its their first time, and end up releasing an impressive map. Others might take several maps before they get a better grasp at detailing, theming and such.


This is it from me, someone else can probably elaborate better if need be. Beside that, this thread is excellent and i'll make use of it myself. I need to start also listening to my own advices cause i'm guilty of so many things 40oz and myself said, beside the criticism part i mentionned. But boy am i scared to map, lol.

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Also, sometimes the answer is simply to take your two or three unfinished maps and marry them together. I did this with almost all of my maps: I'd work on a new map 'til I had no idea where it was going, stop and begin work on another map intended for another map slot, then go "aha!" and Frankenstein 'em. I think doing this divides each map into distinct "chapters" that can be progressively more challenging and eventually lead back into one-another.


Or maybe I'm just a lunatic.

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A lot of this echoes ideas that I've stumbled upon in my own course of experimenting with mapping, but it's good to see them reinforced.


I feel as if this video, although it's about drawing, expresses some ideas that are pretty applicable to level design as well.  Basically the same idea of "redo a similar thing a bunch of times and take a look at what versions worked the best."  I know I have one map in my WIP project that I basically entirely rebuilt from the first version that was one of the earliest maps in the set, keeping the same idea but with the goal of "do it better this time".


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