In my boredom I have managed to cross a forum-popular request (map-editor) with a forum-unpopular topic (Weaves) to create a new abomination: the Weave-Editor
Act I - General Remarks
In contrast to other people I do not believe that a map-editor will be the holy salvation tool. The reason for this are numerous. In short I do not believe the community is capable of creating quality maps which can be played in the official realm:
- If you look at the L4D2 workshop you see that lot of maps there are either unusable trash or are just copied from other media (Helm’s Klamm, City 17, Resident Evil 2) and fit as such not the Warhammer Lore. Of course there are also several quality maps, but they are rare and needed 6 months or more normally to create.
- Atmosphere will be lacking as they will not have custom voice lines like nearly all other maps in the game. Banter will cover this partly, but there will be missing something.
- Maps have to be within reason and lore of Warhammer and the Ubersreik 5. This is not actually that easy.
- Maps will most likely have a veeerrryyy similar feel to already existing maps as most map creators rely on existing assets which means: Cities and Forests. This was less a problem for L4D2 or Unreal Engine games as there are several other games were creators could rip assets from. The outlook for Autodesk is rather bleak in comparison.
- Other reasons
With these limitations in mind I don’t see more than 2 or 3 maps per year which could reach the official realm. In addition to this, there seems to be some legal jumbo mumbo causing problems for a release.
Act II - The Weave Editor - What is it and how does it work
Entry Weave-Editor. Parts of the previously mentioned problems can be covered if we “transfer” the map-editor over to the Weaves in a reduced form:
- Weaves rely on existing maps for now so there is no need for new assets. Even if there would be the possibility to create something new, Weaves are shorter and therefore less work. Also, they don’t need to be 100 % coherent as they are the result of jumbled Chaos Winds.
- Weaves are short maps with no own story. While Weaves follow an arc, the single Weaves are not. As such they do not need specific own voice lines and they do not need to be coherent.
- There might be a chance that it is less problematic from a legal perspective as the main part of the map-editor, creation and arrangement of assets (as well as navigation files) will be provided by Fatshark and the creators only take care of other aspects. So they do not interact with Autodesk per se. It could be managed by some kind of in-game tool. Not sure if that would work out.
With this said, how could it work:
- As a first step, creators would choose a map part as well as the Wind. These parts have to be provided by Fatshark.
- Creators can then set global parameters like the time frame of the Weaves (to deviate from the 15 minutes), to control time-based spawns (like all 2 minutes spawn 2 CW’s close by), parameters for the Weave modifiers, objective of te map or the difficulty of the Weave.
- Next creators set ambient spawns as well as location based spawns. Where do enemies spawn from, which enemies and how many.
- Creators then set items on the maps like med packs, potions, bombs or barrels.
- Creators should be able to “edit” singular enemies to have more freedom and to allow special settings. For example you could edit the Hp of a Rat Ogre or an Assassin to one million and as such you would have an undying threat for the whole time. Those enemies should be marked in some way to avoid to nasty of a surprise. Maybe some limit on degree or amount of editing is needed.
- Lastly for the upload, creators (togeter with an invited team) have to play AND COMPLETE the Weave they created in order to avoid to much stupid trolling.
With this creators could more or less easily create new sets of Weaves which would be available for other players
Act III - Which scenarios are possible and what general problems are there
How to provide these Weaves to the other players is another problem which would have to be discussed. There are different possibilites.
- Created Weaves will be reviewed (and curated) by Fatshark and can then be added to the pool of ranked Weaves for the next Season. Advantage is reduced chance for trolling and farming maps as they will be sorted out. But the process between creation and being able to be played increases in time.
- Created Weaves will be added to an ever-growing quickplay pool. As such the maps can’t be picked specifically and it is possible that it will never be played with bad luck. However, with increasing quickplay pool the chance of replaying Weaves and them feeling repetitive will diminish.
- Created Weaves will become a third option beside quickplay and ranked playing. The Weaves can then be chosen specifically but they might appear less attractive for players as they are just for fun. And we know how people react on stuff which is just for fun and doesn’t give you a billion rewards.
What are general problems:
- People will complain the Weaves are stupid and ask why a map-editor is only for that not-requested mode
- People will call Fatshark lazy and incompetent because they expect their audience to create content them, especially in scenario 1
- People still try to create troll, cheese or farm maps
- Other stupid stuff the community does.
Like most stuff a Weave Editor is probably unrealistic. But it would give community the chance to take part in the creation process and maybe get some enlightment that even just creating new Weaves is actual work where you have to consider a lot of stuff and make them realize that making new maps is even more problematic.
So, enough Wall of Text right now. There might still be many points I have forgotten to mentioned or haven’t addressed at all.