Thread: Help Thread: Map Rating/Review Thread
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Old July 6th, 2013 (7:55 PM). Edited July 7th, 2013 by sab.
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Now too much of a life.
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Midgar
Age: 20
Gender: Male
Nature: Timid
Posts: 991
Originally Posted by reshilegend View Post
And here's my map:
Map name: Route 1
Map Game: FireRed
Hack name: Pokemon Shining Waters & Hazing Flames

The first route in the game. The area the map is located in is a valley and it's surrounded by mountains. I tried to place the tall grass in a way that the player has to do some battles before he enters the first city. You can jump over the ledge if you want to return quickly to your starter town, but when you walk on this route from left to right you have to take the path with tall grass.
Not much else to say, feel free to rate the tiles separately if you want.
Okay... been a while since I rated or posted, so let's see if I can still do either.
First appearance (quick glance): 7/10 A decent map. There is nothing wrong with it at a glance, but there is nothing that really stands out and gives emotion to this map. That's fine since it's a first route, and there shouldn't be a lot going on, but it kind of makes it a bit bland to showcase.
Style (how well you did at maintaining consistency in style): 5/10 This is really what killed the rating. The most common error I see is people switching between different styles of trees, e.g. natural and nintendo. Both have there pluses and minuses, and both can be done either well, or poorly, but you shouldn't switch between them, especially not in the same map. It gives the landscape a feeling of an inconsistent portrayal. This is the main reason I have marked you down here. The paths appear to stay paths, and do not switch to patches of sand, which is good, but the tall grass has the same problem as the trees. The tall grass on the left has holes and looks like it fits into the more "natural" category than the grass on the right. This is far less noticeable than the trees, but it is still there. Finally the different styles of spriting are especially noticeable in the two big "rare" trees. I've seen much worse, but I'd try really hard to find some trees that fit better than those two
Vegetation (trees, flowers, grass, bushes, etc.): 9/10 Ignoring differences in consistency of mapping styles is a bit difficult, but I think you did a good job with each. The trees are mixed together well, the wild grass fits the mapping styles. The flowers have been scattered nicely. Some individuals like sasquatchd00d and myself feel that the flowers should be a bit more clumped since that's how they generally are, but since you have tiny clumps in each tile, it's a bit less important. I love the use of the weeds/shrubs that are scattered around the map. They, along with the flowers give some nice variety to the map that will help it feel less bland.
Rocks(mountains, rocks, stone, etc.): 8/10 They are fairly well done. The mountains and rocks are very good on the right side of the map, but aren't quite as well done on the left side of the map, particularly the cliff you walk off of and onto. There are two places where you used down/up stairs where I feel you should have used left/right stairs. The top set of stairs isn't too bad. It feels a little forced, but it's probably fine. The real problem is the bottom set of stairs. They just feel so forced and awkward. They really force the player to twist and turn for no purpose. Also, they lead down into a single tile wide corridor, which is almost never a positive. You've already shown that you have left/right stairs, why not smooth out the bottom part and use those? The ledge is good, and the rock placement is nice. I'd prefer it if the ledge didn't stretch quite so far along the bottom, but that's extremely minor.
Shape (how the play traverses the map): 8.5/10 Very good shape for the map in general. There's no real super long straight path, and the player is forced to wind a little. Again, the main thing here is those two pairs of stair. They force the player to rapidly change directions, and are just mildly annoying to the player. The rest is pretty good though. The use of a jump ledge is nice. If there is a lot of back tracking to be done, it might be nice to have the map be a bit less windy, but if you're only forced to go through it two or three times, it's not that bad.
Tile errors: There are two that I quickly spotted on the rightmost mountains. I'm kind of running out of time, but I don't see any. I don't count off for tile errors since it's fairly obvious that a map maker doesn't want them, and I don't feel that it's fair to down rate a great map for missing tree shading or something stupid like that.
Paths: 8/10 They are done fairly well except for one glaring point. Again at that bottom set of stairs, the path feels a bit odd. The whole map the paths felt like they were there due to people traversing the route, and were fairly long. This is completely fine, but at the bottom of the map there is the tiny path that hits the top of the stairs and doesn't continue down. This is probably due to a lack of space, but putting those left/right stairs instead of the up/down ones would allow you a lot more space for a path, as well as making it feel less awkward and forced.
Ingame play(how fun would it be to go through): 8/10 This map would be a little annoying to have to keep going back and forth through. It wouldn't be terrible unless there was a ton of back tracking, but it would still be a little boring. This is mostly because it's the first route, but it is still a little annoying from the player's perspective. The jump ledge is really the saving grace that stops this map from being extremely bland and annoying. It allows for an alternate route and keeps the player a little more interested in the surroundings. There's not a ton of stuff you can do since it's a first route, but it just feels kind of bland.
Final rating: 7.5/10 Decent, but not superb. On a side note, if you do the things that I suggested, the map would probably score a 9-9.5/10 on my scale. Also, I hope that was detailed enough for you, I don't feel I could sit through that again.

Map Name: none
Game: Ruby (why does this matter?)
Hack: unnamed
Credits: Zein, Alistair, Aquiles, kymotonian/kyledove, Lu-ho, Jiggly, and Nintendo
Comments: As with all my maps, I go for more aesthetic appeal than playability, since that's what I enjoy in a game. However, as there are going to be people rating it, I put a minimal amount of effort into the playability. The palette will be desaturated in the future, and the water tiles (just water, not the lilypads or cattails) will be changed but the rest of the tiles should remain. The micro grass revamps from GSC do nothing, they are just there for decoration. You enter from the bottom right. There are also two bushes that can be cut in the middle of the map that allow access to the upper-middle portion of the map. It's a patch of woods, so I purposely made it so that there were no mountains/cliffs.
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