In order to provide some structure to balance threads and make things easier on the OP, the participants, and moderators themselves, I've decided to create a benchmark for threads. This benchmark should be followed in order for a thread to not be removed due to a lack of material to warrant any sort of meaningful discussion. Why is this necessary? Because currently a lot of the balance forum is reading more like a general tips & gameplay subforum where basic stats or unit relations need to be explained to people. This is meant to flush out a lot of the low effort posting around here. People that repeatedly break the rules here may face a general forum ban.
Some Sort of Ethos
No you do not need to be 2k in ladder and global with 1000 games while somehow managing to play every map on the vault. However, it is beneficial to explain things like what kind of games you prefer to play, the maps you tend to play, even just something about what direction you want FAF to move towards gameplay wise. This is mainly intended as a way for you to be able to identify your own bias as a poster and allow posters from other areas of experience to input their own viewpoint. For example, I'm pretty much entirely a teamgame player and first and foremost most of my ideas/criticisms are going to revolve around how they impact 2v2-4v4 games.
Identify a Problem
This should be either a problem in base FAF or FAF Beta (please identify which and please do not include sim mod issues here). For example, explain how t2 torps are somewhat overtuned in naval combat and a slight nerf would enable healthier gameplay.
Showcase the Problem
The opening post of all balance threads must contain a replay of one of the following:
A) Ranked game showing issue
B) Gameplay of mod with proposed fix
C) Sandbox testing showing issue
Any posts not meeting this restriction will be immediately locked.
Find a Solution
Look into the unit. Look at the values it has. Find some sort of statistic change that could accomplish addressing your problem with as minimal indirect harm to other elements of FAF. Yes, minimal. There are very few things that can be done that would not involve harming some sort of game situation.
Justify the Solution
Do not just say "do x." Explain why you would need to adjust this stat. Why this stat or stats specifically? What is the intended result of the solution? Are there any possible indirect problems?
This should give not only threads a reason to be read by members of the balance team, but it should also improve the general discourse between people on the subforum. If there is a flaw in someone's argument segment, it will be much easier to pinpoint it and address it constructively rather than the flailing around going around now.
To repeat, threads that do not meet the structure of this post (from this point on) are liable to be removed.
Due to a variety of administrative and logistic concerns, the Council has determined that FAF's future would be best secured via the creation of a nonprofit voluntary association. This association is intended to bring additional transparency to aspects of FAF such as FAF's financial accounting alongside the division of funds amongst several projects.
This association will also assist in legal concerns regarding FAF ownership. While there is no real need to go into the issues here, just be aware that the actual ownership of FAF itself is a needlessly complicated affair that really needs to have fat trimmed. This association is a way to trim some of the issues FAF currently has administratively while also allowing us a stronger foundation to build FAF's future on by ensuring ownership is held by active volunteers in communication with the day-to-day Council administration.
If participating in this association is any interest of you please come to our preliminary meeting on March 20th at 8pm UTC. It will happen in a private Discord voice channel on the FAF Discord (https://discord.com/invite/hgvj6Af). If you have any interest in participating, message me or a FAF moderator for the role and you'll be able to join on the day of the meeting.
Coming to the meeting does not mean anything on your end, you can come out of pure curiosity or because the idea deeply interests you.
The Statutes of the FAF Association:
Some FAQ (I Imagine):
Originally we planned on the UK, but had to move to Denmark because we wanted to keep the association in the EU. Beyond that, there is no real significant difference between any of the EU nations that we looked at. Denmark allows English to be the standard of communication at said association meetings, which works well for international organizations such as FAF.
No. Being a Board member gives you no additional privileges regarding moderation, deciding FAF operations, making balance changes, or anything of the sort. The central role of the Board and the association in turn is meant to provide a system of accountability for the financial aspects of FAF. It's essentially another form of administration for FAF separate from the Council, with both needing to work together to accomplish tangible goals.
No, that is part of the point of the preliminary meeting. We want to make any necessary adjustments to the statutes at the meeting, so feel free to come if you have any concerns regarding them.
No, the fact you don't is why this whole idea is viable. The meetings are able to be held online, we simply have to meet certain obligations regarding announcing the meetings ahead of time and so on.
Lately I've been approached by several mappers that were curious about the process utilized to review maps for the ladder. Since this process is going to be extended to team matchmaker maps as that feature gets closer and closer to reality, I figured I might as well as give people an insight into how maps are reviewed so they can both figure out how to get their maps on the matchmaker while also improving their own craft.
I'd also like to say that the process itself isn't some solidly ironed out way of approaching maps. Through the years we have adjusted how we calculate final scores, how we interpret various values in our criteria, and the weight we put on the various factors that we look at when reviewing maps. But overall, I think we've hit a nice groove and we're quite comfortable with what our system allows and what it doesn't allow into the map pools we make.
I will be breaking this post down into the 3 categories we use to look at maps: Aesthetics, Gameplay, and Variance.
A lot of people operate under the assumption that the look of a map is irrelevant. All that should matter is if it plays well, and if it looks like a piece of shit then who cares? Well, they're kind of right and kind of wrong in that dissection.
First, aesthetics is not simply the "look" of a map. While the artistic merit of your map is what determines say a 3.5/5 or a 4.5/5 map, it is not what causes a map to be a 1/5. Your map must meet the baseline criteria of having terrain that is both clear and concise. If a map lies to the player, by, for example, having things that look like plateaus that cannot actually be dropped, then it is a bad map aesthetically. These are the things that stay in the mind of a player and quickly make them dislike the map as it can easily cause a game loss through no real fault of the player. If your map cannot meet this bar, then your map could expect to be a 1.5 or a 2 out of 5 even if it makes me cry at the beauty of your decal work.
Beyond that area, we begin to enter the more subjective area we tend to define through the competency of your design and the effort put into it. How do we define both? Well, we have several people on the mapping team (biass, petric, farm, morax) who have made several solid maps aesthetically and have the eye to review whether the decal and strata work put into a map reflects serious effort. Generally when it comes to reviewing this side of aesthetics, we leave reviewing maps up to our circle of highly competent mappers.
So why did I say that the critique that map aesthetics don't matter is kind of right? Well, because we actually do agree with that. We weigh aesthetics to account for 25% of a map's overall score. This is below the expected proportion of 33% if we weighed it equal to gameplay and variance. Your map could look entirely generic and still be a 2/5 so long as it doesn't lie or frustrate the player. This shouldn't harm your overall score (and therefore entry into the ladder) assuming the gameplay and variance are still up to par. I mean, look at badlands. It looks terrible, but it's still a pretty common map in pools because it plays pretty well.
0 - Eye gouging; super badly scaled textures/decals, terrain makes no sense, color scheme makes the eyes bleed
1 - Quite ugly; maybe not actually painful on the eyes but extremely bland undetailed and wacky, badly indicated terrain
2 - So-so; a playable configuration even if uninspiring or amateurish. Perhaps not very obvious heightmap in some places. Nothing disgusting tho
3 - Fine; A solid average-looking map, won't win any prize for looks but can't find much fault with it
4 - Good; A very appealing map, maybe because of high detail, pleasant color scheme and lighting, maybe something else
5 - Great; One of the best looking maps in your opinion. Something just makes it stand out and above others
Now we enter the classic social science experience of redefining common terms so your explanation makes sense. Gameplay has a very specific meaning for us and it's critical to understand it before commenting on it. If you have a tough time with it don't worry, it had to be explained like a dozen times to select people on the ladder team itself.
Here is my go-to explanation for gameplay. Imagine I had some sort of hypothetical vault. If I went into said hypothetical map vault which has 2000 high level, competent games of purely your map and then proceeded to use a random number generator to pick one of these 2000 games, how high quality would that singular game be? So essentially, "gameplay" is a rating of the "meta quality" of your map.
Now of course we don't have 2000 high level, competent games on your map. There's maybe two dozen maps on FAF that could even think of approaching such a criteria. And that's precisely why the ladder team itself exists! It's a pool of 2k+ players that have the ability to determine how a map is likely to play out based on little data. Is it perfect? Certainly not, but since we lack the neural network AI that can play a map ten thousand times to show us the peak efficient play on it, it's the best we got.
Ultimately this part of maps is also graded on a curve. For example, we can't just call Theta Passage a garbage map because it results in t1 spam and a com battle in every game while Roanoke's Abyss let's you do frigate rush or air abuse. You very clearly need to judge every map size in its own category, and so while Theta might be a relatively "simple" map, it does what it does very well and so it is still a highly rated 5x5.
So how do we decide between a low, middle, and high gameplay score? Well this is quite subjective, as you might imagine, but we attempt to balance it out by synthesizing a general score out of the opinions of everyone on the team. In general a map is considered to have a high quality meta if it involves gameplay that requires some level of thought and interaction with the opponent. Maps can be all t1 spam and still be fairly decent on gameplay so long as the t1 spam meta still requires you to maneuver around your enemy and wins you strategic control of various contested areas. If the map is just a flat, boring map where you have a mex every 500 pixels in every direction and so spam can go anywhere and be efficient, well that's just boring and tedious to play.
As you might imagine, gameplay is the most important factor for us and we weigh it as 45% of a map's overall score. The gameplay is the foundation that everything else is built upon.
0 - Gameplay makes you pull your hair out
1 - Gameplay is uninspiring and boring or highly annoying
2 - You can live with the gameplay but you still rather avoid this map
3 - Average game experience for your taste
4 - You find gameplay to be interesting and stand above the majority of other maps
5 - This might as well be your favorite map, you love the way it plays, you wouldn't mind to host custom 1v1s on it whole day
Finally, the Siamese twin of gameplay. People often have a hard time figuring out where one begins and the other ends, and I sometimes wonder about it myself too.
Ultimately variance is your reaction to gameplay. Basically, it is the measure of how viable and interesting the "rogue" or "off-meta" tactics on your map will be. Maps that have a strictly dominate meta will be able to manage a strong gameplay score while having a terrible variance score (Theta for example). Likewise, some maps are able to have anything and everything as an option but all those options are terrible and not fun to play with because it results in a minute 2 rock, paper, scissors match (Voi Vittu for example).
The best maps are those that have a strong general meta that is consistent and able to lead to long games where a large variety of potential seams could be found. In return, those seams are often the off-meta tactics that allow you to throw your opponent off balance and reward innovation in player gameplay.
We currently give this category a weight of 30%. It used to be higher, but ultimately we weren't fans of the kinds of maps it was putting into pools and so we adjusted the ratio.
0 - One viable com path, one viable build, one viable win plan
1 - Very confined gameplay but maybe can squeeze a suprise build or cheese
2 - Some strategy is probably safer and easier than others but can make a different approach work, likely can send com in a few different directions
3 - Generic middle of the line. Has multiple builds, acu paths and strategies to pick from.
4 - A versatile map, various builds, strategies and ideas are all usable. Can win with something completely unexpected.
5 - A map where imagination is the limit. Land focus, air focus, naval focus, 1st land or 1st bomber. Acu or no acu, eco or no eco, anything is viable.
Note: A "player" is defined as a person that plays at least a single game during said month using the client's services. Every data point is a month during that year.
Welcome to perhaps the most anticipated FAF event of the year! This year's LotS will mostly work similar to the way last year's operated. However, there will be a few minor changes to the way that map selection/faction selection operate and there will also be more of a coordinated media coverage attempt of the event both in streams as well as in casts.
The Event will be getting covered through a new FAF streaming channel called FAFLive.
One of the biggest problems we've had for LotS is that everyone that could cast the event is, well, a participant in the event. On the otherhand, those that aren't playing such as Gyle often do not have the ability to actually stream any of the games due to real life concerns. Therefore, me and Morax will be working together in order to cover the events. We wanted to create a channel that can cover the event and hopefully include things like player interviews to give the event more color than it has in the past. We want to move beyond simply identifying players in the game as "red vs blue" or "cybran 1 vs cybran 2."
I'm going to be working with both English and Russian casters in order to ideally give more interconnection between the variety of channels covering FAF. I got this idea after looking at the Russian side of FAF and seeing how they'd often shout out one another and quickly build up interest across casters, creating a more active casting community in general. The caster gets more views and incentive, and the audience gets more games to watch.
So essentially I'm collecting a list of people interested in covering the event and I'll be curating lists of games for them to cover. I hope to give everyone a unique, good game so that people have an incentive to watch some of the smaller casting channels.
Currently we have:
If you're interested in covering the event, PM me about your channel and I'll add you to the list.
Contact me on the Forums/Discord/FAF Client.
Basically, the basis of the tournament structure hasn’t changed. It will, as always, feature the best 16 FAF players with those 16 players being decided through various qualifiers. There will be 4 qualifiers to decide the players and the winners of each qualifier will get the LotS Champion avatar for the coming year as well as a potential cash prize (currently in discussion).
The person responsible for directing this tournament will be me. I will be hosting and dealing with issues that pop up during the tournaments and handle the transaction issues and more meta concerns about the tournament. Please do not use this thread to sign up for the various segments of the tournament, those segments will have their own threads for that. This thread will be for pointing out specific concerns as well as for information related to the Official Tournament.
Each qualifier will have a signup system based on their ladder rating in which a maximum of 16 players can play per qualifier. If more people sign up, they can act as a substitute for players that failed to show up on time but they will not be guaranteed a slot in the bracket itself. The players will be seeded by their ladder rating within the bracket itself. The bracket will also be a Single Elimination Bracket in which every matchup plays a BO3 to determine who will be knocked out and who will progress to the next stage.
Each qualifier will also consist of a map pool of 15 maps. It will be 4 5x5 km maps, 6 10x10 km maps, and 5 20x20 km maps. In order to select the maps played for each BO3, the two participants in each bracket stage will discuss amongst themselves which maps they would like to veto. Each player will be given the right to 3 vetoes and the bottom player in the bracket will be given the first veto. Each player will also submit vetoes sequentially. Once the list is down to 9 maps, the players will be given the right to pick which of the nine they wish to play. The bottom seed will be given the right to pick the first map and the top seed will pick the second. The players will then report the list of maps alongside the two they pick to the Tournament Director. The Tournament Director will pick the third map from the list of potential maps in the case of a tie. Do note if a segment of the tournament is lagging behind the rest of the tournament, the Tournament Director reserves the right to require the players to play different maps from their chosen maps in order to speed their section up.
Both players will also message the Tournament Director the 2 factions they pick to potentially play in their first game alongside the faction they wish to veto in that first game once they have decided on the first map. They will repeat this as their games go on in their BO3. A veto only applies to their opponent, so it is perfectly viable to pick a faction and veto it. If players deviate from their given factions, then they will forfeit the round on that map. A faction selection is final once given to the Tournament Director and cannot be edited later on. If a map was picked by a player in a preceding round and then picked again in another round, they are able to pick a different faction if they so wish.
So for instance, player A and player B went through their vetos and picks. They report the 9 maps available as well as the two they pick to play. Then player A reports that he will be banning aeon on the first map while picking to play 1. aeon 2. cybran. Player B bans aeon and picks 1. cybran 2. uef. The match is then cybran v cybran on the first map.
The qualifier threads and their map pools will be disclosed two weeks before the intended date of play in order to give proper planning time as well as to encourage prep between players.The actual announcement for the tournament that discloses the dates of the tournament and how it will operate will be released in late September.
Each qualifier will end with the players first to fourth qualifying for the official tournament. The position in the qualifier and the qualifier that a person qualified in will be utilized to seed players in the group stage of the official tournament. There will also be a substitute tournament in the case of absences.
December 12th (Part 1) of the Official Tournament:
Similar to the qualifiers, Part I of the Tournament will have the rounds done in a BO3 format. It will follow the same rules of the qualifiers specified above. However, each group stage will be done through Round Robin format. Only the top 2 in each group will move on to the next day of the tournament. The map pools for each group will be announced at the conclusion of the fourth qualifier. They will still consist of 15 maps, but the maps themselves may differ between each group. The games in the group stage will also be seeded by placement as shown in the chart above. Once the group stage begins, the veto and pick process will work as it did in the qualifiers.
December 19th (Part 2) of the Official Tournament:
With the group stage completed, the tournament will now be down to 8 players that will progress into the final bracket of the tournament. These players will be playing a Single Elimination Bracket with some minor changes to the way the qualifiers operated. The map pool will once again consist of 15 maps given out at the end of the group stage section. This day of the tournament will have 2 BO5s in which once again players will have 3 vetoes bringing them down to 9 maps to pick from for the BO5. They will follow the faction submission rule of Part I of the Official Tournament and then proceed to pick two maps each. They will pick in the order of Bottom Seed -> Top Seed -> Bottom Seed -> Top Seed and play in that order. If a tie happens, the players will veto down to the last map and play that map.
December 20th (Part 3) of the Official Tournament:
The final day of the Official Tournament will have 4 players left. These 4 players will be playing a single BO7 each to decide placements. The two competing for first will be the victors of Part II. Both of these rounds will consist of the same 15 map pool and each player will be given 3 vetoes at the start. Each player will pick a map from the 9 maps left with the Bottom Seed picking first and also vetoing first. If the games come down to a 3-3, then the players will use a final veto with the Bottom Seed veto'ing first to bring the 3 maps left down to 1. They will then play that last map.
Will try to consist of a fusion of both good, classic maps as well as more experimental maps that are not commonly played. Each pool should have a combination of gameplay while also consisting of maps both well known as well as unknown. It is up to the players to decide which maps they hate and which maps they want to play through the veto/pick system. The map pool selection is merely there to provide the optimal variety.
LegendOfTheStars Qualifier Tournament #1 - 10.10.2020 at 14:00 GMT
LegendOfTheStars Qualifier Tournament #2 - 24.10.2020 at 14:00 GMT
LegendOfTheStars Qualifier Tournament #3 - 7.11.2020 at 14:00 UTC
LegendOfTheStars Qualifier Tournament #4 - 21.11.2020 at 15:00 UTC
Substitution Qualifiers - 28.11.2020 at 15:00 UTC
Official Tournament: 12.12.2020 & 19-20.12.2020 at 15:00 UTC
This tournament will also follow standard FAF tournament rules. Any comments or concerns about the procedures or structure of the tournament? Please post them here.
500 is already an absurd delay that greatly harms micro potential in the game. There is no way it would ever be increased to 1000, regardless of someone coding it.
They aren't "OP" in the sense of being a dominant strategy but they promote inherently toxic gameplay. The only thing that should combine mass + e + flexible BP is the ACU itself. When other units do it, you open up the ability to do things like protecting infinite eco in a single, condensed area. Lategame eco should be about factoring in the risk/reward of additional eco adjacency efficiency and additional risk of exploding mass fabs. Not make boys and forget.
They should just be nerfed into irrelevancy or even removed just for the sake of promoting a healthier game.
FAF LotS 2020 Trailer:
So two training concepts I'm interested in doing/entertaining on the twitch (so it can exist as highlights there and maybe exported to FAF YT)
This would be taking a game or two from <300, 300-800, 800-1300, 1300-1800, and 1800+ and then essentially reviewing the replays to explain where players lost the game. The intent would be to showcase what kind of mistakes people are making at various levels of FAF gameplay and what kind of things they should be focusing on in order to avoid game losses. The point would NOT be to explain everything a 600 rated player is doing badly, but rather the major errors that ultimately result in him losing the game.
The games for these sort of reviews would generally be short and standard. There is no need to review some epic 1 hour game that is neck and neck as this isn't being done for the end goal of a cast. It should be the typical 15-20 minute FAF game with typical moves and motions that people can easily apply to their own games.
For this to happen, I would need people interested in reviewing the replays as well as people that are interested in gathering these sort of replays. If people are interested, PM me about it.
This can go one of two ways. The more intensive one but likely more interesting for general players is one in which 2 high rated players play one another and then proceed to take turns explaining their actions via a replay watch. This would then result in people having 2 different views of the same game explained to them and they can both see how two different players approach the game as well as how they respond to the major game moments. Otherwise, we could just have a single person overexplaining some nice, standard game they played
I would imagine these would be replays that are being watched at -3 or -4 speed just so that a person is capable of keeping pace with the game as they are explaining things. Why did they send that first engie there? Why did they build a few less pgens? Why did they send their ACU now rather than stay in base and make 2 more facs? Why did they go first int instead of first bomber? Stuff like that. Give us the train of thought that is going through your mind as you play.
Obviously this requires players that have some level of coherency in their play. It isn't very interesting to hear people say they did things "because" or "it just works" like we're listening to Todd Howard. If you are interested in taking part in such a series, PM me. We can work something out where either we just have a solo person overexplain their game or have two people take part in the explanation of the game.
It gets considered for a matchmaker queue when it meets matchmaker queue standards. This is what I told Sheikah years ago when I started helping him out and it's the standard now. There is no reception to gauge when it doesn't meet the standards of matchmaker.
Map Gen & BO:
The BO impact is overstated. The thing map gen stops is precise builds built around certain maps where you can quickly snowball into a victory. This means that the people most likely to see an impact from map gen in halting BO gameplay are those at the absolute highest tier of ladder. One could even argue that true BO gameplay is barely even seen outside of tournaments. There are people like Blackheart that just go and play a game on ladder, get Regor, go all in spam down mid, and beat 2200 rated players. Yeah, great BO gameplay there.
Everyone else? Their version of BO gameplay is recognizing where it's important to send engies. Or whether quicker air or more land is more impactful. Or including tree groups in their build. These will all exist in both map gen and in authored maps. Top players themselves barely play ladder enough to recognize the new maps that were in it for 6 months and that I then put into LotS. It's only then that they actually make a BO for it, and then they proceed to forget it after.
Even paradoxically, the dudes complaining about BO gameplay fail to see that map gen maps tend to be the exact sort of setup of BO maps in ladder where you secure middle through efficient early trades and then snowball into victory later. It's just new feature rose glasses.
Make better posts.
Problem is it's going to basically be impossible to differentiate "exploit" from "this was the best game move from me and I incidentally benefited from doing it in a way I didn't expect it." Mods can't stop people from going for a draw and getting a win out of it due to a game result issue, so it can't really be considered an exploit that action can be taken against.
Even against people that are well aware this is an issue for ladder nothing can really be done against them. What are you going to tell them?
"If you try to draw the game from a lost position again you will get banned" or what?
I don't really think you need to include idiosyncrasies of game result reports in a guide for a dude that literally just opened the client. Nor do they really need to be shown a list of exploits or whatever. They barely know how to host a game.
If you really wanted to set up some equivalent comparison for what the "community" wants, you would look at how often the median person plays map gen vs authored maps.
Not how often one, singular map compares to map gen.
Got bored so did some fun calculations.
In LotS, 4 people have qualified for each single LotS. These are: Nexus, ZLO, Jagged, and Petric.
4 people have qualified for 4 of the 5 LotS events. These are: Turin (2016), Adjux (2021), Blodir (2017), and Farm (2021).
4 people have qualified for 3 of the 5 LotS events. These are: keyser (2021/2018), Tagada (2017/2016), Pepsi (2017/2016), and Blin (2019/2016).
Of these, all qualified for the last event aside from Farm, keyser, and Adjux. Farm because he can't manage a schedule and Adjux because he got a lobotomy over the last year or so. Keyser was busy with a degree.
I could also just include dudes like Blackheart or TURBO that also managed to perform well in all their LotS even though they only qualified for 2.
All in all, I could just do an invite tourney of the guys I know are good and disregard everyone else or maybe just give 2 slots for new guys each year.
But that kind of sucks so I don't want to do it.
For those wondering, 8 people qualified for 2 of 5 qualifiers and 12 people managed to only qualify for a single qualifier.
25% of the one-time qualifiers came last year.
Just as a note because I'm not sure if I mentioned it anywhere, but I've recently transitioned management of the 1v1 pool to archsimkat. Easier to devolve management for pools as they continue to split into various queues and also means there will be people other than me that can handle the technical responsibilities.
On that note, I'm still looking for additional people to assist in curating maps as well as reviewing map pools, so if the concept of having everything you design hated appeals to you feel free to apply. Don't worry though, I'll love your work and that's all that matters!
I wish the players in the tournament knew that.
If anything it's playing a map with pure constant land spam meta that is more likely to play differently as you can build upon the expectations of meta instead of "damn I spawned in, lemme just do the tactic that I can think on impulse will work when I see wide open map with easy access to the enemy and all expansions on the map"
@Tagada said in About Neroxis map generator...:
Yes, they revolve around the same concept but so do most of the generic hand crafted ladder maps,
Yes, they revolve around the same concept but so do most of the generic hand crafted ladder maps,
I put a third of the maps in the 10x10 pool in the current ladder in "send acu with spam and snowball into win" category. And a lot of those still play with the concept and allow some unusual plays ie Darkfall with massive e reclaim allowing for quite a lot of upgrade rushes. I've also seen plenty of Arctic Refuge games that do not get decided by a failure in mid but rather intense side raids delaying expansions and tree reclaim.
Right now these maps play like it's land wilderness with slight terrain variation.
I think that right now MapGen maps are good enough (probably 3.5 score on average in terms of gameplay + Variety) and occasionally we get a really good one.
I think that right now MapGen maps are good enough (probably 3.5 score on average in terms of gameplay + Variety) and occasionally we get a really good one.
Playing hollow once is ok. Playing hollow 20 times in a row is not.
Yes, a lot of the maps you posted have the same issue of everything being focused on essentially middle. The map gen seems to be predisposed to putting impassable stuff around the sides in maps. This can be fine in 5x5 (hard to make 5x5 gameplay not revolve around efficient engagements in X location even in authored maps, and adding even just some small impassable terrain can drastically change how a map functions) or 20x20 (lots of extra room for error in terrain with it being 4x the size of 10x10, not to mention all in spam is way harder to abuse). But I think almost every 10x10 in the tournament and all the ones you posted barring the 2nd revolve around the same sort of walk mid with spam game plan.
TLDR: make it harder to directly access opponent base thru mid, make the externalities of maps more valuable.
My problem with map gen is I don't want this:
I want this to be the average map from it:
? Most map gen 10x10s are hill in middle with 2 mex and/or reclaim that you walk everything into and then 2 3-4 mex expansions u secure with pd then ignore in favor of giant smashfest in middle since map is wide open plain and if you win middle you can attack/defend everything.
I'd say basically every 10x10 you mentioned in that list has more diversity in gameplay than map gen.