natty_dread wrote:Porkenbeans, it's not like graphics of the map are not being developed during the GP stage... or that GP workshop is only meant for gameplay development. That's not how it works currently, nor has ever worked I think.
You should more think of the gameplay stage as simply "the period when the gameplay is open" and GFX as "the period when the gameplay is closed". The GP and GFX stamps are like achievement badges: before the GP stamp, both GP and GFX are being developed, and once you get the GP stamp, it's an achievement that says "gameplay is fine now, no need to work on it anymore". After which you work on graphics only.
Which makes sense, since some things (like small map, xml, etc.) should not be started until you're sure the gameplay is relatively static.
But maps should be about the gameplay, and gameplay should be the first priority. After all, the prettiest map in the world is no use if it plays like total crap. The majority of CC players are much more willing to forgive sub-par graphics than they are to forgive sub-par gameplay (as long as the map is readable).
I agree. Of course, pretty graphics are important. But it's good gameplay what makes a map played again and again. As long as the gameplay can be understood of course...
And about the process being too directed... don't see that as a restriction. Say that as a guideline. Even the best artist has to start somewhere and follow some flow. Even the art has some method. The important thing is that the Foundry process serves as a guide, not as restriction.
Also, Foundry Staff has to evaluate the map somehow. So at the end things need to get formalized. Not too much formalized, but formalized to some degree. A few milestones need to be there, and a few key conditions that a "valid map" needs to have, also need to be there.