This map guide is still a work in progress; some parts are very incomplete, and some chapters are not yet fit for publicaiton. Contributions have been made by yeti_c, Gimil, Oaktown, wcaclimbing, MrBenn, IanCanton, WidowMakers, RjBeals, taCkTiX, cairnswk, and of course AndyDufresne and lack himself.
Part 1: Foundry Process and Infrastructure Hi, and welcome to the foundry! Whether or not you intend to creat a map of your own, we hope you keep returning, as public input is what keeps the foundry running. Each map exists in its own development thread, where mapmakers receive input from the rest of the community, helping them balance the gameplay and improve the graphics. The maps progress from one forum to the next, receiving "stamps" from the Foundry Mods and Foundry Assistants as the maps meet certain criteria.
The rules of map making Before starting your own map it is recommend that you read and understand the following rules to ensure that the process is as enjoyable and efficient as possible for you and the community at large.
Some good foundry conduct We know everyone has there own way of doing things. Below is just our advice to you on good foundry conduct when it comes to posting map updates or posting feedback to a map you have interest in.
Part 2: Making Your First Map You've been playing games at Conquer Club for a few weeks, and you've begun to notice that each map has the creator's signature. You ask yourself, "Who are these people? And why do they get to make maps for this site?"
Well, these people are ConquerClub users like yourself, and their maps are on the site because they took their work through a rather extensive Foundry Process. It is a step-by-step process in which the basic idea, the mechanics, and the final look of a map are closely scrutinized and ultimately given stamps of approval. It is also a collaborative process in which the mapmaker seeks feedback from the CC community, receives support and criticism from players and mapmakers who have been through the process, and makes a series changes to the look and play of the map.
What You Will Need Before You Begin Before you even think about making a map, you'll need the basic building blocks.
Part 3: Developing Gameplay Once your map has moved from the Drafting Room to the Foundry's Main Floor, it will begin receiving a lot more attention and more feedback. Most of the feedback you receive can be put into two general categories: Gameplay or Graphics. In both areas your map must meet the formal and informal standards of the Foundry, and as it does so you will be receiving stamps for each. As the Gameplay stamp is usually handed out first, this is where we'll start.
To begin with, what is "gameplay?" Gameplay is anything that affects how a game on your map might progress. Many of the factors you'll need to consider when designing your map should be fairly obvious to CC players - bonuses, victory conditions, territories that start the game neutral, etc. - but there are a number of factors that may not be so obvious, such as making sure army counts won't interfere with other elements of you map, and making the map accessible to players who may be color-blind.
Balanced Gameplay Basically this means that a map should be fair for all players. We've all been in games where one player got a lucky drop and began the game with all of Australia, and while you can't account for luck you take into consideration whether or not your map will be prone to advantageous starts, or will quickly become lop-sided affairs. When developing your gameplay consider the following:
This is the original XML Tutorial posted originally by lack, but expanded upon by yeti_c.
Part 5: XML Tutorial
Pretty graphics are not enough to make a successful map. You also need to think up good gameplay rules and write them down in an XML file. This tutorial will explain how to do that. Don't worry, you don't need any technical skills or special software. Just pay attention and fire up your favourite text editor, such as notepad.