Map Gen Week Feedback Thread

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Map Gen Week Epilogue & Feedback


First and foremost, a REALLY BIG "THANK YOU" to the dev team and everyone working on the map generator. This has from what we have seen been a majorly popular addition that has brought a lot of interest to players and the community.

Folks, after a weeklong event of mapgen only in ladder, the ladder team and Sheikah would like to hear feedback. For starters, here are two pertinent threads that greatly contributed to this event taking place in the first place:

Blodir's initial reaction thread
Archsimkat's Mapgen Week Announcement

I recommend cruising through those a bit first as it will give some initial thoughts on what will be discussed here.

So now, first, let us get some facts and functions understood.


How Map Gen Week Functioned


Rating Dependency

As map gen is - well - random, it is not possible to really determine if one map gen will be better suited for ratings. The matchmaker team decided to use 1000 as the cutoff where anything underneath would be 5x5 & 10x10; anything above, 5x5, 10x10, and 20x20. No weight was given to a certain map size for the brackets.

Map Layouts

The map generator has a number of set "Layout Types" which guides the code to generate a certain type of map without having to completely build upon nothing each time. This cuts down on running time to generate, gives a set of familiar "classes" to reference and apply frequency (more on that in the percentage distribution section).

You can see how the map layout types look in the "Sample Images of Each Map Gen Layout Type" section below.

For reference, the map layouts are as follows:

  • VALLEY
  • BIG_ISLANDS
  • CENTER_LAKE
  • BASIC
  • DROP_PLATEAU
  • LAND_BRIDGE
  • LITTLE_MOUNTAIN
  • MOUNTAIN_RANGE
  • ONE_ISLAND
  • SMALL_ISLANDS
  • VALLEY
  • HIGH_RECLAIM
  • LOW_MEX
  • FLOODED

The layout types in current can be selected in a custom-hosted game by selecting the options here:

https://i.imgur.com/hZSDJd3.png
https://i.imgur.com/MjKRiPs.png

Map Layout Distribution

The map types were given a percentage rating as shown below in the code block where each number is a percent. For example, on 20x20 “BIG_ISLANDS” has a factor of 0.25 which equates to 25%. Please note that each map size has a different distribution of percentages.

Further, each map size only has a limited number of map layouts available. For 5x5, it would not make sense to try and use “CENTER_LAKE” or “BIG_ISLANDS” as there is not enough area to get a feasible, resulting map.

20km : BIG_ISLANDS: 0.25, CENTER_LAKE: 0.06, BASIC: 0.06, DROP_PLATEAU: 0.03, LAND_BRIDGE: 0.13, LITTLE_MOUNTAIN: 0.06, ONE_ISLAND: 0.06, SMALL_ISLANDS: 0.25, VALLEY: 0.06, HIGH_RECLAIM: 0.02, FLOODED: 0.00

10km: CENTER_LAKE: 0.13, BASIC: 0.13, DROP_PLATEAU: 0.06, LITTLE_MOUNTAIN: 0.13, MOUNTAIN_RANGE: 0.13, ONE_ISLAND: 0.13, VALLEY: 0.13, HIGH_RECLAIM: 0.03, LOW_MEX: 0.13, FLOODED: 0.00

5km: BASIC: 0.21, DROP_PLATEAU: 0.11, LITTLE_MOUNTAIN: 0.21, MOUNTAIN_RANGE: 0.21, HIGH_RECLAIM: 0.05, LOW_MEX: 0.21

Sample Images of Each Map Gen Layout Type


In order to give players an idea of what each map layout looks like, please refer to the series of images as a reference. Please note, these are single instances of examples and will not capture the entire capability of the map generator.

Basic Layout

5x5
5km_basic_preview.png

10x10
10km_basic_preview.png

20x20
20km_basic_preview.png

Drop Plateau

5x5
5km_drop_plateau_preview.png

10x10
10km_drop_plateau_preview.png

20x20
20km_drop_plateau_preview.png

High Reclaim

5x5
5km_high_reclaim_preview.png
10x10
10km_high_reclaim_preview.png
20x20
20km_high_reclaim_preview.png

Little Mountain

5x5
5km_little_mountain_preview.png
10x10
10km_little_mountain_preview.png
20x20
20km_little_mountain_preview.png

Low Mex

5x5
5km_low_mex_preview.png
10x10
10km_low_mex_preview.png
20x20
Not included in generation due to map size and mex minimums.

Mountain Range

5x5
5km_mountain_range_preview.png
10x10
10km_mountain_range_preview.png
20x20
Currently under development, no known good results as of yet.

Center Lake

10x10
10km_center_lake_preview.png
20x20
20km_center_lake_preview.png

Flooded

10x10
10km_flooded_preview.png
20x20
20km_flooded_preview.png

One Island

10x10
10km_one_island_preview.png
20x20
20km_one_island_preview.png

Valley

10x10
10km_valley_preview.png
20x20
20km_valley_preview.png

Big Islands

20x20
20km_big_islands_preview.png

Small Islands

20x20
20km_small_islands_preview.png


Feedback Questions for Map Gen Devs & Matchmaker Pool Team (ladder team)


In order to streamline some feedback, it would be appreciated if everyone could answer a few questions, then give open-ended replies to this thread:

Question 1: Based on the map layout types listed and exemplified above, please describe which you prefer, dislike, and if any should plain be omitted from ladder/matchmaking.

Question 2: The reclaim and distributions in map gen are still a work in progress. If possible, comment on the reclaim experienced in maps and whether you would change anything.

Question 3: Do you feel you played better or worse during map gen week versus traditional pools with premade maps?

Question 4: Were there any particular differences between map sizes? For example, did 5x5 feel as enjoyable as a 10x10?

Question 5: Would you like to see a "Map Gen Month" in the future to test the feature for a lengthier period of time?

Question 6: Were there any "biomes" that stood out to you? A "biome" - for reference - is a premade set of textures that give a theme such as desert, red planet, jungle/grass, etc.

Please give any open-ended comments you feel will help guide the map gen development and matchmaker teams!

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My perspective is from a 1k ladder player and a sample size of 16 games.

  1. The only one I had issue with were Flooded and Small Islands 20x20s. Aeon/Sera can have a pretty big advantage on those maps due to the tendency of mex groups being separated by tiny strips of water.

  2. Was fine but could use some reclaim very close to spawn. Would be nice to sometimes have a rock or two to prioritize.

  3. I definitely played better but I think most of it was just due to playing more consistently.

  4. Nah all of them are pretty good. 20x20s are exhausting but that's just by nature of the map size, it's unavoidable.

  5. Not a "Map Gen Month" but it'd be awesome to have the first week of every month be mapgen only. Consistency > a long test period imo

  6. Eh, I'll use this point to talk about the aesthetics generally. Water can be incredibly hit or miss. Sometimes it's not immediately obvious where there is water or where the terrain slopes smoothly enough to provide access to water. Other times it creates that horrible mess you see pictured on the islands 20x20s. Also some of the terrain is just way too damn bright, those colors should be removed IMO.

Bonus:
check out this map I like to call "Dollar Store Seton's"
DollarStoreSetons.jpg

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All i can say that if you are not used to mapgen you will not be as efficient as you were on regular maps.

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830 rating during week, 13 random games - I got a number of 20x20 games (which went well and were fun)

Question 1 Map types: Most water maps I played on had naval choke points that caused units to behave badly, for that reason I dislike all island maps. The low mex map were great fun.
Question 2 reclaim distributions: much better than regular maps, I actively enjoyed reclaim locations and general ease of reclaiming.
Question 3 performance: I feel I played better but my rating does not reflect that.
Question 4 map sizes: Almost every 5x5 is a bloody knife fight, fun once in a while but get boring fast. I liked 10x10 most, I feel 20x20 would have been better with far less mass on these 1v1 maps.
Question 5 map gen month: For myself, yes absolutely, but we don't want to scare away people who hate random maps.
Question 6 biomes: Red maps looked ugliest, desert maps were easiest to understand.

Open general remark: I feel like this is the way the game is meant to be played, like Age of Empires is meant to be played on random maps.

This was a much fuller experience as I need to analyze the map and decide what I want to do instead of just remembering it or feeling stubborn if I don't do what I am supposed to.

Open improvement suggestions:

  • I feel like 5x5 needs work on minimizing gun-com knife fights - every 5x5 is, but the random ones are worse.
  • Not giving low rated 20x20 is a shame, except that the maps were indeed unsuitable for low rated. Maybe develop a "FAST_LATE_GAME" map layout for 20 km that creates a simple layout, with lots of starting mass, designed so that low rated players will reach T3/T4 stage in 15-20 minutes reliably and get into Experimental Slugging and Mass Donation matches.
    Then add this FAST_LATE_GAME map layout as 20 km to <1000 map pool.
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i had around 1.1k rating during the week and played like 5 games,

  1. i think there all fine, adapting too the map is part of the fun of the random map generator
    
  2. the reclaim distribution seemed fine too me, i wouldnt change anything about that
    
  3. i didnt realy notice a difrence, probably because i didnt play enough too notice a difrence
    
  4. i want too say that 10*10 felt like a good middle ground regarding map size
    
  5. preferably not, i personally dont enjoy playing 1v1`s on randomly generated maps, althought i wouldnt be against it too help test the random map generator
    
  6. i didnt notice anything notable about the biomes
    

i personally didnt realy enjoy the mapgen week. this might be because i find it more anoying too play on a map i know i am not going too be playing on again.
because of this one thing that i thought of was too generate a couple of maps and just put those into the map pool so you play a couple of maps for a week rather then every match being a new generated map.
i dont know if this can be implemented or if its even a good idea (just throwing ideas out there).
i do realise that this might just be me just not enjoying 1v1`s on randomly generated maps, and i dont have any problems just not playing ladder for some time if you want too test the map generator again

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the only indignation - Remove the 5x5 mapgen
While the mapgen will not be able to do this, do not put it in 5x5

what I would like to see at least a little from the map generator for 5x5: Palaneum, Mineral, Adaptive Salt and Pepper, Crimson Feud, The Ganges Chasma, Zordam Xolix, Tofina Night, Stickleback Ridge, serenity desert small - FAF version, Projekt_I, Optima Ferox, Pointed Cove, Monaki, Jagged Subsidence, Exhausted Dunes, Exter, Esgaroths Ruins, Ephemeral.

Drop Plateau it only plays well and looks good

I only regret that a certain biass hid and removed the rating on almost all of his 5x5 cards, I don't understand why, but this act also deprived a couple of normal maps

So let's say I'm not against the map generator, but it needs to be improved both in terms of resources and in terms of the landscape for 5x5. playing all the fights of the same type spam+battery is a mockery...

in any case, if you leave it unchanged, it's also not scary, everyone will get used to it

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Question 1: Based on the map layout types listed and exemplified above, please describe which you prefer, dislike, and if any should plain be omitted from ladder/matchmaking.
based on my games in the mapgen week the only thing it made some maps too stressful was the Huge amount of reclaims (it was quite frequent, and in the 20x20 is really exhausting). But talking generally it made ladder really fun

Question 2: The reclaim and distributions in map gen are still a work in progress. If possible, comment on the reclaim experienced in maps and whether you would change anything.
see question 1. I'd add: maybe don' exaggerate on little reclaims spread all over the map that make extremely tedious the collection.

Question 3: Do you feel you played better or worse during map gen week versus traditional pools with premade maps?
more exciting to see new maps. Sometimes playing open palms for the 100th time make my motivation fall suddenly. And with the normal pool you can get stressed on the fact that you don't want to sandbox BO.

Question 4: Were there any particular differences between map sizes? For example, did 5x5 feel as enjoyable as a 10x10?
yeah.. 5x5 are ok imo, you can draw pretty easy, but it as a different tactic than 10x10 and make the game richer. I'd like to see 15x15 maybe..

Question 5: Would you like to see a "Map Gen Month" in the future to test the feature for a lengthier period of time?
YES I'd say MAPGEN YEAR!! (aha i'm joking), but maybe a different queue where you can get only mapgen. (for example: 1v1 normal+ some mapgen, 1v1 mapgen, 2v2, 3v3 etc...) (rating then sum the same for the 2 types of 1v1, so everybody happy) OR if you don't want that I beg you to make a veto for ladder map, or I will soon quit ladder and maybe also FAF 😞

Question 6: Were there any "biomes" that stood out to you? A "biome" - for reference - is a premade set of textures that give a theme such as desert, red planet, jungle/grass, etc.
naah, but one of them has a sad vibe xD... I refer to red planet

P.S: thanks DEVs! ❤

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@morax
Question 1:
I pretty like all the types of random maps, there is no such which i dislike. We love neroxis for randomness, it won't be cool if one of the map types will have much more chance than other

Question 2:
All was fine. I had maps with a really lot of reclaim, have maps with some reclaim and maps where's no reclaim at all. All is ok for me

Question 3:
I played a bit worse, but mostly because innactive and my tries to change game style.
And because there was really a lot of 20x20. And i am suck on 20x20, so my rating is droped a bit

Question 4:
5x5 are fun and quick
10x10 are the best, balance of quickness and gameplay variety
20x20 are the worst, really long games, takes a lot of time and effort, while victory is the same as for 5x5
really want to different queue for them or something like that
i sometimes have no mental strength to play it and don't go ladder because of it

Question 5:
i personally love neroxis more than static maps, so i dont care if we deleted current map pool and place neroxis instead, forever. But me is me, 1 neroxis week in each month will be better than 1 neroxis month and then no neroxis for no-one-knows-how-much-time
want it as regular event

Question 6:
i really dont love orange and red maps, it hurts my eyes a bit
white and green are the best, nice and clean
other is ok

Also, can i know, when the next neroxis ladder event will happen? Can't wait for it

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Placing this feedback here from Tex as it’s quite detailed:

@Tex said in “Introducing MapGen Week on Ladder”

I thought mapgen week was fun, but would not want to see it done for a period longer then a week. The last day or two was a little tedious. That being said, would be excited to see it kick off the first 5 days of any month.

My two cents on the whole build whoring issue: What most people below 2k ladder think build whoring is, is just the other player having decent macro and a basic opener. That will not change regardless of if you play mapgen or not. I only know builds for a small handful of maps. Palms, badlands, and loki come to mind. The rest i just improvise on the spot.

A good build should make sure that you plan to build only as much power as you need, more mex/reclaim on map means more power, so plan ahead. Engis should expand quickly, and you should have an early tank or two screen for your expanding engis. Thats all there is to it. If you are wasting power (or god forbid, mass) in the first 5 minutes, thats not the result of a bad build, but of poor macro. That will be the same on mapgen or any custom map. Its a skill that needs to be developed.

Buildwhoring would be the tagada/nexus level creations. The secret badlands build, or any other build that requires you to have planned out engi reclaim/pathing to the absolute second, giving you a clear goal of a faster transport, bomber, or getting 2 factories ahead of your opponent by minute 5 due to cutting pgens or skipping mass extractors. It would be map specific, and have 0 power overflow with mass/energy storage at ~10% for the first 5 minutes.

If its something that can be done on any map, its not build whoring, its good macro. If its something that you can plan in the first 15 seconds by pulling up the reclaim field on the map and sending an engi to the nearest rock/wreck, its just good macro. If it truly was a build order whore, the player would be up in the land of 2k.

I say all of this not to antagonize or beat anyone down, but to help people try to understand how to better improve on their end. 90% of the people i train (or used to when i had more time), their biggest issues were their macro decisions. Not micro/gameplan choices. People up to 1600-1700 still spam t1 pgens in a line with 2-3 engis for the first 10 minutes, leaving their power management decided by the gods, regardless of the map. Once you have a decent understanding of the macro in this game, then you can start to learn how to really play it. Its really hard to outsmart people when they have 2-3x the stuff that you do. Its much easier to win when you have more tanks.