The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

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The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby InkL0sed on Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:16 pm

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From the Senior Editor:

Happy New Year!

Since this is the time of year when everyone makes resolutions, here's a few I'd like to make you all. First off, I resolve to keep on giving you all the latest goings-on in the Foundry, like we've done for the 14 issues so far. In other words, I resolve not to give you any less than you've been getting. Second, I resolve to bring you new columns and features as time goes on. There's a few ideas we've got brewing behind the scenes that we'll be releasing to you in the issues to come. Third and finally, I resolve to consider any and all ideas I get from you guys. We'll run through the possibilities, and if we end up doing it, you will get full credit. So for that idea you thought of but haven't asked yet, PM me, TaCktiX.

Now about the issue: we've got the full set of columns this issue. Our Maps showcase what's going on in the Foundry, including the largest set of Recently Quenched maps we've ever published. And I must say, we've got some interesting maps to play in the next week or two. In the Editorial, yours truly looks at mapmaker incentives, this time from outside instead of inside. The Spotlight looks at the Germany revamp, recently stickied in the Foundry. A Look Back puts the original Feudal War in its crosshairs, and covers the revamp currently in progress. We've even got a News segment about the map competitions, informing everyone about the 2nd Round. Last, but not least, the Community Perspective returns! A hot-button issue developed just before Christmas dealing with forum bans and making maps, and we've published all sides of the issue. Put in your two cents and we'll publish them in the next issue.

All in all, it's a big issue, with lots to see, and more to come. Hope you enjoy it,
TaCktiX

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Hi budding map makers and foundry regulars!

Just a wee word today to update you all on the latest developments and updates to our holiday map making competitions!

The Central America amateur map making competition!
We've seen some great entries in our amateur competition, with some unique styles being presented that the Foundry had never seen before. In light of the holiday spirit oaktown took the decision (after discussion with all participants and the C.A. team) to allow all amateur map makers in this competition to submit a second entry for round 2. It would be a shame if everyone wasn't given the chance to utilise that great potential fully in this competition.

Also, 'special circumstances surrounding its exclusion', another map entry will be slipping into round 2. This unfortunate character missed round one. Since the competition's purpose was to get amateur map makers involved it was only fitting to let this entry slip in.

Round 2 will now be a straight 6 entry competition, winner takes all.

The Centerscape Competition
Our competition for the more experienced map makers has been great as well! Four fantastic entries were made. Unfortunatly our experience map makers don't receive the same holiday goodwill we showed to the amateurs. Oaktown's Gilgamesh map was booted out of round 1 of the competition with the least votes.

Round 2 of this competition will surely be an epic one.

Both competitions have been fantastic thus far, we hope to see you all soon in round two of both competitions. The deadline for round 2 in both competitions is 11:59pm (GMT) on Wednesday 7th January 2009.


Happy New Year,
gimil.

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In this section we cover every map presently in development. Each map is accompanied by a brief description of the map's theme, graphics, and gameplay, as well as what's been happening in the last couple of weeks. Finally, a link to each topic, the map's creator(s), and what stamps it presently has are noted.
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    Name: British Isles Revamp
    Creator: Gimil
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: One of the most beloved maps in the game is getting a makeover. The creator has redone the look of the map to be much cleaner and geographically accurate to the Isles.
    Present Development: Quenched.


    Name: Europe 1914
    Creator: Qwert
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: Another covering of World War I, this time from an overall theater look. With eye-popping colors, rigorous detail, and a slew of bonuses, this map definitely gets one's attention. With two objectives that aren't mutually exclusive (unlike Operation Drug War), the gameplay looks to be a mix of classic and complex. Overall it's a new look on a oft-forgotten war, which is bound to turn out interestingly.
    Present Development: Quenched.


    Name: Holy Roman Empire
    Creators: Grayhawke, Pamoa, and Unit_2
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: The Holy Roman Empire has been said to neither be Holy, nor Roman, and most certainly not an Empire. At least CC players can fix the last part by building their own on this map detailing the HRE and surrounding nations. Taking a combination continent/influence bonus gameplay, the map tries to bring out some of the history of the HRE, all the while backing it with simple, solid graphics.
    Present Development: Quenched.


    Name: Rail Australia
    Creator: Cairnswk
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: Cairns is becoming a master of serial maps. Following up Rail USA and Rail Europe is this third map, Rail Australia. It brings, as expected, the rail system from Down Under into vivid color. Unlike the other two though, there are added twists to the map that should make play very interesting and varied.
    Present Development: Quenched.


    Name: War of the Triple Alliance
    Creator: Oaktown
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: This map captures the War of the Triple Alliance, South America's bloodiest war, fought on one side by Paraguay and on the other by Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay. The muted colors and faded images help make this map truly feel 19th Century. The gameplay is classic, lacking any sort of twist or gimmick.
    Present Development: Quenched.


    Name: WWII Europe
    Creator: Qwert
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: Long stalled due to its large size, this map has undergone a weight-loss program and now fits within the size requirements. Taking his WWII Eastern and Western Front maps and meshing them with a Central front in the middle, this is a map that covers the entire theater of the war in Europe. With a large scale, and lots of opportunities, it will definitely be the WWII map to play when it's quenched.
    Present Development: Quenched.


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    Name: France, 18th Century
    Creator: Pamoa
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImage
    Description: The French Revolution changed the course of European history, so having a map based on the country at that time only makes sense. It's a simple, attractive small map, with classic gameplay. The clean approach to the map has made it very interesting to watch as it has progressed.
    Present Development: Working on a few last tweaks to assure XML positioning.


    Name: Golfe du St-Laurent
    Creators: Lone.prophet and Unit_2
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImage
    Description: The Gulf of St. Lawrence (French, Golfe du St-Laurent) is the world's largest estuary, but conservation takes a backseat to beating the pulp out of others on this map of the gulf and its surrounding areas. It's an average-sized map with well-done textures and area-appropriate colors. Its classic gameplay is without any gimmicks and should be easy to pick up.
    Present Development: Coordinate centering has happened with the XML, and small graphical tweaks are in the works.


    Name: Romania
    Creator: Foregone
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: Romania is a little-known country in Eastern Europe, yet steeped in history dating back to the Roman Empire (hence its name). This map takes the country and infuses a piece of parchment with a no-frills depiction of the country, with a touch of hand-drawn charm.
    Present Development: Looking quenchable, despite the mapmaker's absence.


    Name: San Marino
    Creator: Ruben Cassar
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImage
    Description: The Ruben Cassar formula to a T: a simple map based around a small area. It's attractive to the eye, and while being average size has plenty of bonuses that should be easy to get and hold onto.
    Present Development: Looking to be getting back off the ground soon, with a few last tweaks and a completed XML.


    Name: USA 6 Region Map Pack
    Creator: WidowMakers
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImage
    Description: This project is bold. WM is aiming to create 6 maps based on the 6 regions of the USA map, all with the same essential mechanics. The graphics are simple and effective, reflecting the colors and territories of the USA map while keeping a new set of flair. It's sure to be perfect tournament material, as well as an interesting set of maps to play with friends.
    Present Development: XML checked, last images posted. Let's quench the set!


    Name: WWI: Ottoman Empire
    Creator: Cairnswk
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImage
    Description: World War I has also slipped into the void of uncoveredness, but thanks to Trench Warfare and this map the War to End All Wars will get its just deserts. The map takes on a lesser-known part of the war (though the famous battle of Gallipoli was fought here), focused around Turkey and the Central-allied Ottoman Empire. The general theater is portrayed in simple, understandable colors and the gameplay is fairly standard on this medium-sized map.
    Present Development: Presently at the small-tweak phase, with XML checking to be done soon.


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    Name: Antarctica
    Creator: e_i_pi
    Stamps: ImageImage
    Description: Conquer Club has featured at one time or another all continents, save one: Antarctica. To avoid the problems of "boring chunk of ice with only research stations on it" and the treaty protecting it from conquest, the mapmaker has cast the map forward in time to 2060, when ice has given way to land, and everyone is vying to conquer it all. The graphics are suitably cold yet colorful, and the conquest basis of the map has been well-thought-out. The map merely asks that you conquer the previously unconquerable Antarctica.
    Present Development: Gameplay stamped and "mini-vacationed" while the map competition is going on.


    Name: Brazil
    Creator: RjBeals
    Stamps: ImageImage
    Description: The ultimate winner of the well-publicized Brazil Revamp Competition, Rj has created a map that simply oozes with color, fitting for a nation known for its vibrant culture. Graphics are the order du jour now.
    Present Development: Getting back into gear with some helpful feedback on pronunciation marks.


    Name: Cairns Metro
    Creator: Cairnswk
    Stamps: ImageImageImage
    Description: In yet another map by the seemingly tireless Cairns, he's covering the metropolitan area of his hometown, Cairns. Adopting a slightly more pastel color scheme than his recently-released Sydney Metro, the map also employs fewer continents and territories, making it have a significantly different gameplay than Sydney. So for yet another top-quality Australian experience, look for this map in the coming weeks.
    Present Development: Recently stickied in time for Christmas, and looking Forge-worthy.


    Name: Das Schloß
    Creator: Cairnswk
    Stamps: ImageImageImageImageImageImage
    Description: This map is unique in several ways. For one, it is the only map that can only be won by completing the objective. For two, it's gone back from quenching into the foundry with a major rework of the map's mechanics to fix some unforeseen balance issues.
    Present Development: Once issues are resolved on those and all present games on the older map are completed, the map will get re-quenched. According to Map Rank, that is a mere 4 games (7 months after the map released).


    Name: Eastern Hemisphere
    Creator: Oaktown
    Stamps: ImageImage
    Description: What happens when you slice the world in half then age it 90 years? This map showing the far side of the world around 1910! It's the time when the great European empires are crumbling, and the creator has worked hard on making gameplay appropriate to the time setting. Expect a fresh world experience soon.
    Present Development: In the midst of some last gameplay feedback, still awaiting a Graphics stamp.


    Name: Feudal Epic
    Creator: Gimil
    Stamps: Image
    Description: The long-awaited sequel to the original conquest map, Feudal War. Whereas Feudal War was restricted to only 6 players, Feudal Epic has enough for 8 people, with wide and expansive village regions in between to clash and vanquish your enemies in. Otherwise, the gameplay is the same, if not better, than the original Feudal War, making this a certain favorite when it quenches.
    Present Development: Gameplay balancing is still in progress, but winding down. A Gameplay stamp should occur soon.


    Name: Feudal War Revamp
    Creator: Gimil
    Stamps:ImageImage
    Description: The revamp to the successful Feudal War. Sporting gameplay balancing, primarily to improve the crud situation Rebel Territory ended up in, improved graphics influenced by Feudal Epic, and an overall cleaner look, it's working toward getting its Graphics stamp after meaning months of vacation.
    Present Development: Tweaking the graphics to look pretty without being too green.


    Name: Germany Revamp
    Creator: Pepperonibread
    Stamps:ImageImageImage
    Description: The current Germany map, as many German members have pointed out, is quite inaccurate. In this revamp, Pepperonibread is redrawing many of the borders to more accurately reflect the real Germany, as well as changing many of the territory names. Finally, the graphics will be completely overhauled and replaced with, in the words of Gimil, "super cool, shit hot graphics."
    Present Development: Graphics stamped at last, with a Forging to soon follow.


    Name: Indian Empire
    Creator: Oaktown
    Stamps: Image
    Description: Taking a cue from another, more modern attempt at India and its surrounding countries, Oaktown has taken the period of time when India was a British colony, and translated it onto a beautiful rendering of a history book (Editor's Note: he used the same book for the Brazil revamp contest). Combining simple colors and a hand-drawn look for terrain features and the like, the map is fairly simple on gameplay, with classic continents and a railway bonus to spice things up. Rewrite history for who controlled the region in the 1800's, or join those building the next railway for the ruler. The choice is yours.
    Present Development: Slowed down a bit since Oaktown has been away enjoying the holidays, of all things. A new version should be out soon.


    Name: Land and Sea
    Creator: Edbeard and Gimil
    Stamps: Image
    Description: This is a map of the world including both land and water territories. The graphics are basically non-existent right now, but the gameplay is undergoing serious discussion. The main feature of the game is that land and water territories only connect at certain points.
    Present Development: Major graphics rework looks to be in order, as the majority of comments lately have been leveled at them.


    Name: Medieval Denmark
    Creator: Balsiefen
    Stamps: Image
    Description: This is a map of the Kingdom of Denmark, circa 1150. Its graphics are designed to match the era, and the gameplay is classic. Using an era-appropriate font and an interesting island-based connection scheme, it should be a different take on the Danes.
    Present Development: In the Main Foundry now, and getting feedback of all flavors.


    Name: Peloponnesian War
    Creator: qwert
    Stamps: Image
    Description: From the creator of some of the greatest WWII conflicts, comes Peloponnesian War! A Military conflict from 431 to 404 BC in ancient Greece that pitted Athens and its allies against Sparta and its allies. qwert is always up to a challenge, and this map could very well be that.
    Present Development: Under a little sharp criticism due to its similarity with the Imperium Romanum map. Graphics comments revolve around the large-ness of the Aegean Sea.


    Name: Poison Rome
    Creator: cairnswk
    Stamps: Image
    Description: The Julio-Claudian dynasty of the early Roman Empire has a family tree complicated by multiple marriages between the members of the gens Julia and the gens Claudia. This map is currently in version 8, with a unique family tree layout. It will make for some interesting gameplay.
    Present Development: It's come a long way since its Draft state, with a full graphical overhaul and a slew of gameplay edits.


    Name: Wales
    Creator: MrBenn
    Stamps: ImageImageImage
    Description: With maps of Ireland and Scotland already quenched, it is only natural that a map of Wales be developed. The graphical style is simple, and makes heavy use of Welsh motifs. The gameplay is mostly classic, with one twist: each geographical territory has two sets of armies, one for each clan in the area. Special bonuses are given for holding both clans in the same shire.
    Present Development: Recently stickied and looking to be in the Forge soon.


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    Name: Chess
    Creator: john9blue
    Stamps: [Advanced Draft]
    Description: A map based on one of the oldest games, to put it simply. It's a lovely rendering of a late-game chess match, with auto-deploys on held pieces and attack routes based on piece movement. That alone makes for a different and engaging gameplay, sure to set this map apart. So grab the speed clock and claim checkmate soon.
    Present Development: Due to not-universal understanding of the rules of chess, adding in the moves graphically is next on the update block. Lots of gameplay feedback is in the works as well.



    Name: Atlantis
    Creators: Premier2k and Team Pok3r
    Stamps: [Advanced Draft]
    Description: Ever want to visit Atlantis? Ok, maybe a myth, but not anymore! Atlantis is unique map that is sure to get CC gamers talking. Great layout and design, with a bounty of colors keeping it lively.
    Present Development: Discussion on this map is taken well by the creators. Version 5.5 has come with input from our CC members. Lettering, bonuses and removal of connection points being the latest.



    Name: Caribbean Sea
    Creator: maritovw
    Stamps: [Advanced Draft]
    Description: If you were a pirate, this would be your dream, but this is not your pirate dream. This is creation going in a fun direction!
    Present Development: This map currently in version 2.2, with a comments requested by the maps creator.Currently naming issues are arising and coloring is being discussed. The map layout is good with some work still to be done.

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In the Editorial, we ask a member of the Conquer Club community to write about some aspect of the Foundry. Subjects thus far have ranged from first-timer perspectives to a fictional look at future mapmaking, with plenty in between. Anyone interested in writing an Editorial is asked to PM TaCktiX about it.

This issue the Foundry Newsletter's Senior Editor, TaCktiX, stands up on the soap box again to give another Editorial.

TaCktiX wrote:Last time I wrote an editorial (6 issues ago), I wrote about the internal motivations of a mapmaker and the intangible incentives to make a map. This time I'd like to evaluate the current tangible benefits of being involved in the Foundry, and possibilities for how they could be improved.

As virtually all foundry-goers know, the Foundry is a peer review system. Maps progress through the Foundry by getting feedback intended to make the map better. Without this feedback from people who essentially aren't creating the map, no map would be as good as it is when it finally reaches live play. So despite this complete necessity of people able and willing to comment on a map, there is no incentive to do so other than the intangible "feel good that you're making a difference" feeling. Though self-motivation is great, any form of external motivation serves to enhance any self-motivation already present. The service they do is invaluable, so rewarding it will only create more of a good thing.

As an added possible incentive, I would like to advocate more liberal use of the Special Contribution medal. To an extent, it's a catch-all for anyone that helped out CC. So use it to that effect. Reward mapmakers who have turned out literally dozens of maps, reward C.A.'s who spend countless hours making sure that the maps in the Foundry are where they should be, reward people who have contributed resources that everyone uses, like the XML Tutorial. Reward those feedback givers thought of highly by the Cartography staff. In essence, acknowledge the people who sometimes fall between the broad cracks the other medals leave behind.

Taking that one step further, why not create more medals for crucial work done around the Foundry? How about a Feedback medal, given to someone who has gone above and beyond in providing quality feedback in tons of maps? Or a Graphical Excellence medal for a person well-known for their talent in bringing a map into existence? Or a Gameplay Excellence medal for a person who has crafted maps with unique and good gameplays? The possibilities are endless, and the visual reminders will serve as a good incentive to keep up the good work, to keep on stretching the envelope in terms of mapmaking, to put CC and its maps above all other competition. Since that's ultimately what the Foundry does, let's celebrate it a little more visually.

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In the Spotlight, we typically cover a staff-selected map and mapmaker in an interview. Mapmaker motivations, inspirations, and the like have been covered, with plenty of surprises in between.

This week we interview pepperonibread, creator of the Germany revamp.

    How old are you/what gender are you/where do you live? Answer specifically, vaguely, or not at all.
    I'm a guy, still in school (that's what prompted my 3 month hiatus). I'd guess that I'm younger than most of ya'll on here.

    How did you find out about Conquer Club?
    A friend told me about it, who had heard about it from a friend, etc. I had played Risk before, but I was no good and just lost to my brother all the time.

    What is your favorite map currently up for live play? Why that one?
    Well... I'm a standard gameplay dude... and pretty pictures always draw me in... so Great Lakes, Iceland, and High Seas are all up there. Hong Kong may very well be my favorite map, though it seems to make few others' top lists. It's a really unique map graphics-wise, and unlike the maps I listed above, Hong Kong was uploaded before I became a CCer - so it's just a "reliable" map for me.

    What interested you in mapmaking?
    The computer graphics, and artwork in general. Global Warming was my first major graphic design project, but I had been playing around with my dad's Photoshop 6.0 for a while before that. And with Conquer Club being my first experience on an internet forum, the mechanics of the evolving Foundry definitely interested me.

    What kind of feedback do you like getting the most?
    I love the stuff that's so awesome or innovative, that I don't even care if I need to rebuild a whole layer set, or draw something pixel by pixel. Naturally, those kind of comments are few and far between, so any constructive criticism is good. I guess...

    What "keeps you going" through getting a map through the Foundry?
    The comments from you guys, much of the time. The possibility of playing my future creation, and to have it played by others, is an powerful motivator as well.

    What inspired you to do this revamp?
    I've always been interested in fixing up an older map - see my entries to the Indochina and Canada revamp contests. As for picking Germany, there are honestly not too many revamp-worthy maps left nowadays, and I've always felt Germany deserved a touch-up.

    How did you decide what graphics styles to go with?
    I guess I somewhat tried to expand on what I'd done with Soviet Union, and adjust it for a German feel - and inspiration for USSR originally came from some of WM's work. I was determined to go army circle-less as well, so that influenced my design significantly. Finally... mountains. And rivers too. I knew if I wanted my impassables to look more than just "tolerable" I'd need to move away from mixing basic Photoshop commands, and that a more hand-drawn effect was necessary.

    How much time do you spend on each update? How much of that time do you enjoy?
    The biggest updates take upwards of a few hours, the smaller ones 30 minutes or so. Generally, as I get farther in the process and the edits become more detailed and minor, the enjoyment level decreases. Though the anticipation of having a quenched map mounts at the same time, so it's not too tough to stay motivated.

    Was there anything in the Foundry that you found surprising or unpredictable concerning this map?
    At one point I had to essentially redo the entire map, which I definitely didn't expect. That did the map a lot of good accuracy-wise though, and in my opinion added some previously absent German flavor. A nicer surprise was that I've yet to receive any comments saying that the current Germany map on the site is better. I guess this means my map is at least tolerable to those anti-revamp types out there... or maybe they've just given up protesting.

    Were there any suggestions that you absolutely loved? Or any that you really hated?
    I really liked the idea of making the continents the colors of the German flag, though I can't remember who suggested it. Related to that was edbeard's comment about ordering the colors as they are in the flag, that ended up looking excellent. I don't think I hated many suggestions, though I did have to refuse the idea of using a swamp as an impassable. It was just too weird for the map, and I, uh... can't draw swamps.

    What do you think of the Foundry process in general?
    It's cool. I guess it's a bit slow at times, but that's necessary to insure it will never turn completely mechanical and uninteresting. Of course it has some failings, though I've no doubt things will continue to change as they have in past - whether by gradual evolution or abrupt revolution (well, as much as revolution can exist on an internet forum). So... my advice is take it or leave it, or hang around and criticize (coherently) until something gets fixed.

    Happy holidays, everyone!

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The section where we ask what YOU think. We've typically run polls and published additional responses to the questions asked, but new and different ways are certain to show up soon.

This issue we look at some of the opinions from a recent issue: should a forum-banned user be allowed to make a map? And what constitutes "making a map?" Post your opinions in the original topic we got these replies from, and we'll post the best in next issue. (original topic)

gimil wrote:Letting him finish his first map is a sign of good will so that his good work that he did before being banned doesn't go to waste. However, being that he is now forum banned, letting him work within the forum via a third party is wrong in many opinions (both within and without Team CC). If you get yourself banned, you should lose all forum privileges, whether or not those contribute to the site or not.

edbeard wrote:The mods/lack/"powers that be" figured out that a previous policy (allowing people to post on behalf of banned people) was a poor one. It allows a person who is banned to circumvent that banning. Tom should feel lucky he was allowed to finish his old map.

qwert wrote:I must say that it's quite ridiculous that two maps is locked only because some permabanned map maker try to create maps; and I don't understand why is that not accept for Map Foundry and for community in CC, or these is not allowed only for Lack and CA.
If someone can make very good map, then why is not allowed, after all, with these map he's not insult nobody, especially when some map look good like Belgique.

TheNeonPeon wrote:As I said before, I believe the purpose of the ban was to stop the spam which t-o-m constantly posted in the forums

gimil wrote:No, the purpose of any forum ban is to remove someone from the forum community. The reason he earned his forum ban was for spamming or trolling or whatever it was :). Being removed from the forum community means you lose all the privileges to all the little things you can do on the forum.

qwert wrote:Why will some other map maker who is not banned, take to create map for Oliver? If I don't get banned I will take by my self to create map. But t-o-m is banned and he need someone to post instead him . He is not punish for making maps, he punish because spamming, and I think that you need to allow Cena and Oliver to continue maps with t-o-m graphic. If t-o-m want to contribute in these way to create maps, then these is not for punishment, these is for =D> .

OliverFA wrote:I would have appreciated a word or two letting me know that I was breaking a rule before using methods so direct and expeditive. Honestly, I don't like to be treated like a criminal. If CC is putting some barriers in MY map (It was MY idea and not t-o-m's. Remember?) I have a hard time finding reasons to continue with development.

By the way. Even if it wasn't my idea and not t-o-m's, I fail to see what is bad about he wanting to give his time and effort in creating an addition to the site. From my point of view. That can only be seen as generosity. When someone is banned from a place (either if it's his fault or not) the normal reaction is very far from wanting to continue adding to the site.

lancehoch wrote:A lot of people seem to forget that the forums are a privilege, not a right. While I agree that the map looks really good, and it really bites how things had to happen, I think gimil made the right decision. Like it's been said time and time again, the Carto's are still going to allow Oliver to continue the map if he desires, but the graphics can't be done by t-o-m.


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In A Look Back, we look at either a recently quenched map or a mapmaker who has contributed to CC but hasn't done so recently. It's a great retrospective that is certain to be an interesting feature as time goes on.

This issue we take a look at Feudal War, a conquest map by Gimil and Yeti_C. Also covered is the Revamp in progress in the Foundry (full writeup is above in Maps).

    Feudal War has become known as the "first" conquest-style map. What prompted the idea?
    The idea was born out of a want for an empire expansion type map. At the time I had been playing a selection of Total War games which got my creative buds tinkling. Before I knew it I was hooked into Photoshop and drawing pads for hours, trying to create a layout and gameplay style that would work for the map I had imagined.

    What sort of balancing and other types of gameplay issues did you run into while creating it?

    I don't really remember having any real gameplay issues during the map's production. There was a lot of chops and changes throughout the months, but I never really stalled on anything. There was one time very near the beginning where the C.A. at the time, KEYOGI, had a strong belief that the map would never work nor would it ever be popular should it be quenched. During that phase we did have a hard time getting things to move forward.

    Feudal War has been a staple of numerous tournaments, and well-known as one of the most popular maps on site. Do you have any theories for why people enjoy the map so much?

    I had always believed that its popularity is because of the fact that when it was released its style of play was unique but also interesting. Although Age of Realms 1 was quenched beforehand, it can be argued that it has similar qualities to Age of Merchants, e.g. resource pairs. Being an enjoyed style of play (conquest) and Feudal (sort of) being the first of its kind I sometimes tell myself that Feudal War is the 'classic' of conquest gameplay.

    What stamp did you find the hardest to get? Any reason why?

    Feudal War was in production before my time as a C.A. and before the time of stamps becoming a part of the map making system. Although going through memory, if there was a stamp system, the graphics stamp was probably going to be the most difficult to gain.

    The terraforming movement which was started by mibi and his Trojan War map was a graphics style that amazed me. I wanted Feudal War to be influenced by that while still having its own unique graphics style. This this goal in mind I set into a lot of tutorials and try and error sessions in Photoshop trying to get a terraforming look.

    You recently re-started the revamp for Feudal War. What prompted the revamp originally?


    My original reason for starting the Feudal War revamp was my own dissatisfaction with the graphics standard I had produced at the time. Having had the map quenched I did a lot more terraforming work on my own and realised that I could if I wanted make something of a much greater quality.

    As we know many people in the CC community don't like REVAMPS and can be a little resistant to change. I understand that I will have to deal with these people after Feudal War is revamped. To be honest thou if I am not happy with the standard I created, why can't I REVAMP my own map?

    What sort of improvements are you building into the revamp?
    This REVAMP has brand new graphics that mimic the style I have created for the new Feudal War map, Feudal Epic. A style that I believe is of a much higher quality than the original Feudal War image.

    There were a few minor gameplay changes to Feudal War as well. However I have took the decision as of late that these gameplay changes may be changed back, it may not be perfect but people still play it so I don't feel there is a need to change the winning formula.

    What ended up being the most rewarding about doing Feudal War?
    The most rewarding factor from doing Feudal War is probably its popularity. This single factor is probably also the reason I had the motivation to create the 8 player version, Feudal Epic.


    If there were any periods where things were speeding along, how did that make you feel as a mapmaker?

    With any map if production is speeding along I can be satisfied as a map maker. It tells me that my idea is supported and that people are willing to give up some of their time to help me.

    The process does get a little stressful from time to time as we all know but 99% of the Foundry's stress is born out of a desire to make something better. So it is worthwhile in the end.

    What's your next project, if you have one? Provide links if available.
    I do have a project going on behind the scenes. It will be another adventure of the European Colonies as they fight it out for power and glory in the Sequel to the New World (Or is it a prequel?). I'm not saying anymore; you will have to wait until it hits the Foundry.

    Unfortunatly, Coleman is no longer around to see the next stage in his New World idea. So yeti_c will step up to be the supporting character in my next venture.

Subscription

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Then feel free to subscribe to the newsletter by sending a PM with your name to the Newsletter's senior editor, TaCktiX (clicky). By subscribing you will receive every new issue of the Newsletter straight into your inbox, keeping you up to date with all the new latest developments in the Foundry.

Wrap up

We would like to thank you all for taking the time to read and enjoy our newsletter.
See you next time!

gimil - Graphics
InkL0sed - Formatting Editor, Proofreading Editor
reelkmcn - Maps In Development Editor
TaCktiX - Senior Editor, Editorial Editor, A Look Back Editor
wcaclimbing - Graphics
ZeakCytho - Perspectives Editor, Spotlight Editor, Maps In Development Editor
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby the.killing.44 on Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:33 pm

=D> Another great issue. By the way:
TaCktiX wrote:… I would like to advocate more liberal use of the Special Contribution medal. To an extent, it's a catch-all for anyone that helped out CC. So use it to that effect. Reward mapmakers who have turned out literally dozens of maps

I agree. [hint]cairns for special contribution[/hint]

.44
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby cairnswk on Mon Jan 05, 2009 3:57 am

Nice issue, well done once again. =D>
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby bryguy on Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:19 pm

InkL0sed wrote:Image
PM me, TaCktiX.



uh... im confused, the post is by inkl0sed, but it seems to be by tac... #-o
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby TaCktiX on Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:16 pm

bryguy,

Note that that excerpt is "From the Senior Editor", i.e., me. Ink posted it this time because for some reason "the dimensions of the image could not be found" or some BS for me.
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby yeti_c on Tue Jan 06, 2009 4:40 pm

Great issue guys - apologies that you caught me at the 2 weeks of the last few years where I have been unable to contribute.

C.
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby whitestazn88 on Tue Jan 06, 2009 8:32 pm

sweet
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Re: The Foundry Newsletter: 14th Issue

Postby hotspur on Fri Jan 09, 2009 1:23 pm

you guys and gals at CC are the tops and worth every cent that you recieve from your member keep it =D> =D> =D>
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