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 STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)

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HAXage
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Tue Aug 06, 2013 5:09 pm

ThatLunaticFeline wrote:
Green is too high because the stage is heavily biased towards the snowballer, and unlike other maps like Simp1 it's very difficult to make a comeback. However, banning it would be wrong. Not only will the stage make interesting and thoughtful games, but also it is not impossible to take a lead yourself because of the spawns of items and characters - you might end up on the boiler after a failed attempt that reduced your enemy to 50% HP.

this is a good paragraph; it basically highlights how much snowballers are at the mercy of the RNG here. if you die you can't rely on getting back into the game quickly; you either get a good spawn or a bad spawn and if you don't build your control strongly enough because you think your opponent will get locked out easily you're going to lose a few games. sure it might be enough to win you the majority of games seeing as how many spawns are outside the boiler but you can't rely on it, and that's a big deal


Last edited by HAXage on Tue Aug 06, 2013 6:03 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Tue Aug 06, 2013 5:21 pm

HAXage wrote:

this is a good paragraph; it basically highlights how much snowballers are at the mercy of the RNG here. if you die you can't rely on getting back into the game quickly; you either get a good spawn or a bad spawn and if you don't build your control strongly enough because you think your opponent will get locked out easily you're going to lose a few games. sure it might be enough to win you the majority of games seeing as how many spawns are outside the boiler but you can't rely on it, and that's a big deal

Definitely. This map is arguably the stage where you're at the mercy of the dice rolls most - although Simp3 can be significant too because of how small it is. Even so, placing it as a yellow stage is probably the best idea, but I can't foresee many players choosing it anyway because of how unsatisfyingly linear it appears to be in comparison to better large maps like Corneria.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Tue Aug 06, 2013 6:03 pm

whoops, big edit, i'll put it in a new post instead

regarding your guys' 2v2 arguments, let's break it down a little...

the contention here seems to be "is it possible for a whole team to control the center and simultaneously lock out the opposing team". essentially there are four distinct ways this could go down. let's say team A takes the center in the first minute of gameplay and kills team B.

option 1: P3 and P4 (on team B) spawn separately, both outside of the boiler.

in this event the ability of team B to get back into the game is largely up in the air. team A needs to lock both players out at the same time and this is dependent on each player from team A being able to shut out each player from team B. ganging up on one player and not focusing on the other leaves you pretty open; if someone gets into the center and they've taken no damage and still have a barrier they're in pretty good shape no matter how many people they're facing, so it's got to be a 1-to-1 scenario in this case. not much to conclude.

option 2: P3 and P4 spawn closer together, still outside of the boiler. exactly how this is possible i'm not sure since i haven't made a study of the spawns when both players are killed relatively close together but let's assume it's probable.

in this scenario i could maybe see the same 1v1 scenarios playing out with team B just driving through one chokepoint and hoping that one of them makes it in. splitting up in this instance is a little counter-intuitive and i'd have to see how it'd go in an actual match because it's true that if you're not moving towards the boiler you're wasting time but if you space yourself out properly from your teammate you can be at less risk of collateral damage. the main thing here is to avoid getting picked off because you split up needlessly. overall in this one i'd say it doesn't play out too well for the locked out team because, although they present a stronger front trying to get back in, they're also a bigger target for two potentially stacked players. 6 missiles - just two pickups - is a lot of damage.

option 3: one player spawns inside the boiler and one spawns outside. now we're talkin'! this is probably the most advantageous position that team B is likely to have. say p3 spawns inside and p4 spawns outside; does team A focus their efforts on P3 since he, being able to pick up weapons, presents the greater threat? if they do that, they run the risk of letting P4 run in with no damage taken and a bar still unpopped. so they focus on P4 - but P3's presence inside the boiler is too big a deal to do that, and if they split their efforts they have a lopsided fight that kind of counts on P4 being killed quickly so that the player fighting P3 can get backup.

option 4: both players spawn inside the boiler. again, i don't know if this is possible or likely; it's just a hypothetical scenario. this is basically an even footing but rather unlikely to happen considering the number of available spawns on the map.

overall, i have to say it doesn't look too bad 2v2 here. only one of those scenarios is really very bad for team B; the presence of any player inside the boiler is a big advantage for any recently killed team. is it possible to lock out a team completely? sure, but it's possible to lock someone out in 1v1 if they get unlucky with their spawns, it's just more likely to happen.

here are the only two games we have of 2v2 Ap:

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - fairly tilted points-era, not entirely even-skilled and one player playing Pep
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - very old but extremely even by a matter of seconds - look at that last missile in flight! not even-skilled but the more lopsided team wins

final verdict: i'm going to hold off on saying green 2v2 for sure but i'll think about it. i think green FFA is definitely acceptable considering how difficult it is for one player to lock out THREE others simultaneously regardless of how many missiles they have; sure they might take a huge lead but it's a ton easier for someone to upset that if they have two other threats to focus on.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:07 am

I've stumbled upon some evidence that may change our minds about the map's status.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

I played a couple of matches solo and discovered all the 8 spawn points. 2 of them are centered on the boiler while the other 6 are outside it. This gives a respawning player a 1/4 or 25% chance to spawn on the boiler.

What is most shocking, however, is the initial spawns. I played four matches to verify these spawn locations but I noticed that at the beginning of every match at least one player will spawn in the boiler and one outside it.

To me, this almost makes 1v1 a red. The player who spawns inside the boiler gets the weapons and defenses he needs before the other player can even think about going up to get them himself. What's most threatening about this, however, is the same argument against timed matches. Player 1 inside the boiler can get 1 kill on Player 2 and sit there and wait out the rest of the game, the threat of pushing into a pod or GGun being too intimidating, even with a barrier.

It's unfortunate that these spawns happen this way, but after a little study with 2 extra controllers I can safely say that 2v2 and FFA stay relatively untouched by this revelation. I played 4 quick matches of 2v2 and found that although the rule still applies, it applies individually to teams. This means that both teams have a player inside the boiler and a player outside. This evens out the game immensely and unless one player gets an unlucky spawn on the outskirts of the map it'll usually end up being an even fight for the boiler. The fact that both players on a team can end up spawning in the boiler is another great advantage for a losing team - I think this map could very well be a great 2v2 map.

FFA works similarly but also slightly differently. In this mode 2 players will spawn at the center and 1 or 2 outside it. However this doesn't really detract at all from the play at all.


Last edited by ThatLunaticFeline on Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:47 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Even more emphasis on the initial spawns because of how influential it is.)
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Wed Aug 07, 2013 12:00 pm

i really hate to shut this down since you've done such an awesome job analyzing it and put so much work into it (that graphic showing the spawns is really useful, by the way, and it's given me some inspiration to do the same with all the other stages as well) but we have a bunch of games even on my channel where two players have had equal spawns in the beginning:

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - both players outside
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - both players outside
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - both players inside
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - both players inside
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] - both players inside

unless i'm not reading your post correctly?

counting the total number of Ap games on my channel, that's 5 games out of 10 where the players had even spawns. granted, two of those games were both players outside the boiler, meaning the faster character wins the race to the center in those circumstances, but that's not a huge deal considering the unlikelihood of someone playing a slow character on a very yellow stage anyway. apart from anything else, getting unlucky with your spawns can happen on any stage; look at the Katina and Sarg missile spawn races and such
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Wed Aug 07, 2013 3:40 pm

Hah! Unbelievable. The RNG fooled me completely! And I was almost 100% certain of it too after a friendly match with my sister on this stage ended up spawning me on the boiler...

Thanks for breaking that theory! Always fun to come across a challenge - I guess 1v1 isn't so imbalanced after all, as long as you both get unlucky.

But yeah, that map was done on my iPod in 5 mins. If you want more, then I'll be more than willing to make some for the rest of the maps!

(Except Titania. The spawns are spread out so far and the map is enormous...)
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:19 pm

heh, i could deal with Titania, it's the least i could do if you'd be willing to do all the rest!

anyway, unless ZL100 has any more objections as to the 2v2 status, i'd like to try this one green 4p and keep it yellow 1v1 and move on to Zoness which usually prompts some interesting discussion. so, as usual, last chance for people to get their foot in the door here i guess
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:44 pm

I'm all for moving onto Zoness. I unlocked it just yesterday but it's already been cemented as one of my favourite stages, if not my favourite, and probably because of Lylat Wars/Starfox 64. That music still gives me the chills. Also, Booster Packs on that level are awesome.

But anyway, I'll do the maps today and I'll post them in a separate thread to keep this place uncluttered.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Thu Aug 08, 2013 3:32 pm

I'm good with moving on, can't win them all Neutral and considering that I probably will never end up using these rule's anyway because of the chances that I will actually meet up with another SFA player from here are very tiny I'm fine with green for 2v2.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Thu Aug 08, 2013 10:23 pm

let's move to Zoness then! one of my favourite stages. i'm leaving town briefly so i won't be able to post anything on it for a little while, but i'll see if i can't type something up tomorrow evening.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Thu Aug 08, 2013 10:48 pm

I'll take care of everything!
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Fri Aug 09, 2013 8:01 am

Green for all types of game play
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Fri Aug 09, 2013 12:04 pm

Ok then, Zoness...

Zoness is a stage commonly associated with slow, thoughtful matches and Febreeze. While it's true that the design of the stage certainly does reflect this, there are two main areas that can favour those who want to risk a faster-paced game. These areas would be the main lift at the north side of the map and the walkways on the underside of the main building.

But first, let's look at spawns and items and what they can mean here.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

Here are the spawns. Their spread-out positions are the major focus here. Spreading out the spawns gives players the opportunity to take their time while moving around after the game begins and make their way to the fantastically well-balanced item spawn locations. That way, both players feel safer when making an initial engagement, and this is typically why tankier characters work better on this map - in an early engagement they have an advantage over characters with less health, especially when Slippy has the accelerated charge rate on his blaster.

However, this choice of spread-out spawns can come with a kick. In a hypothetical situation where a Fox is facing a Peppy and they spawn on opposite sides of the map, the advantage goes immediately to Fox. This is because faster characters have a distinct advantage over slower characters in this map. Fox spawns at the very north of the map, then jumps on top of the main building to grab the grenades there. He jumps down onto the south-most spawn (where Peppy was) then turns around with a fully-cooked grenade and throws it at the slowly retreating Peppy.

The point being made here is that although Zoness works wonders as a defense-vs-defense map, it works unfortunately nastily as an offense-vs-defense map. Playing an über-aggressive game will force the enemy to react too spontaneously. Mistakes will be made, and as quick characters love to do, they will punish these mistakes. As is the same with ApCity, the aggressor will begin to snowball. Perhaps while on his way to the next kill, he finds a booster pack. In my opinion the most important item on this whole map, the booster pack is infinitely more of a blessing for hunters than it is for the hunted.

In the situation I introduced earlier, Fox has 2 kills at 1min 20 secs and Peppy has none. Peppy has been forced to stay on the run from Fox because of Fox's already gargantuan lead. Fox now picks up the booster pack, and now Peppy can't run. Peppy's only escaping ability - his jump - is now useless. Fox flies in and gets another kill on the walkways because of a mistimed barrier by Peppy. Peppy spawns at the top of the lift at the north - yet whichever level you are matters not to Fox with his booster pack, and Fox flies up, making Peppy take a leap of faith to the lower ground, which he misses and consequently he drowns.

The booster pack allows infinite mobility on a stage that is designed to restrict it. The small walkways, the slow lifts and platforms, the tight corners - all of these become merely locations to stop and recharge your booster for a couple of seconds before you're off hunting again. It's incredibly frustrating to deal with, as my sister proved after a quick test match with her.

Yet what balances the aggressive style out is the one-two punch of the stages' design itself. In the game I played with my sister she accidentally charged an RCB and hit me while I flew up from a lower platform. Because the platforms were stacked, I had to fly outwards a bit. Then, when I came into vision, she shot me - stunning me and dropping me into the abyss below. The stage forced me back - already taking a risk - and then punished me for doing so.

Indeed, the counter to the booster pack is the level itself. It also doesn't help that the spawn rate for the booster pack is so low it almost becomes a waste of time to wait for it. This fact alone should be enough to stop some characters from relying on it too heavily.

There is another item which is very significant if grabbed early on, and this is one of the two spawning barriers. What's important to know is if you spawn at the northmost position, you have quick access to both; also, one of the barriers spawns on top of the main building, making access from above the only way to obtain it. The northmost spawn is on the highest level, therefore that is the quickest and easiest to collect. The speed at which you collect this is important, as it can single-handedly dictate how a the first battle will go.

As important as the barriers are on this level, their effect is not nearly as significant as the booster pack's is, yet knowledge of their position is still crucial if you get a good spawn or want to play a defensive game early.

The point still stands that aggressive-vs-defensive playstyles runs heavily in the favour for fast aggressors. It's this reason why Fox is probably the strongest character for this map. Not only can Fox be a quick killer and survive through revenge attempts, but he can also switch style and adapt to the situation - his defense can work almost just as well as his offense, if he plays his cards right or gets some lucky items.

Now let's analyse the map itself. As I've stated before it is designed to restrict movement and force you to play within its own boundaries, and the most important aspect of this is the instant death when falling off the stage because something got in your eyes. The significance of this can be seen in literally every game played on Zoness - either a player will fall off, or they will be extremely cautious so as not to.

And it's for this reason that slower characters get picked so much more than faster ones (preferred control scheme does factor in too but that's a bit too meta for now). Slower characters are allowed to be more careful when running around - if fast characters slowed down to be more cautious then the whole point of them being fast is negated.

This is the significance of the water. To compound this factor the designers implemented the walkways that rub underneath the base. These walkways are deceptively important, as travelling from the left side of the map to the right will either involve spending time running around the central area or walking through it which in itself leads to just more running around. These walkways give not only a fast way to get to the other side of the map, but also an excellent ambush route.

The designers obviously intended it as an ambush route because of one clear item. In the centre of the walkways in an invisibilty pack (or whatever they're called), which hides you under the cover of invisibility and allows you to jump out in front of someone and take them by surprise with an RCB or BarrierBomb that seemingly came out of nowhere. This effect is very limited in 1v1 matches due to screenlooking but in 2v2 or FFA it can be very difficult to keep your eyes on 3 or more screens at once and so can be a significant factor.

Another interesting point, although probably less game-changing, is the gap between the walkways and the above building. The gap is very small - too small for almost any character to jump and not hit their head on. As I said, it's far less impactful, but catching out a Peppy under here can be very worrisome for him as his jump becomes useless.

The second important area of focus is the lift at the north of the map which I will now call N-Lift. N-Lift is accessible from the ground floor at the following times in a 5-minute match:
5:00
4:37
4:13
3:47
3:23
2:57
2:33
2:07
1:43
1:17
0:53
0:27
0:03

(Yes, i really did just sit there for 5 minutes and record those times.)

Knowing these times can be incredibly helpful, for as I've mentioned before, one of the barriers is only accessible from the top of N-lift, and at the top here the only good place where someone can get a good aim on you is from the top of the western lift (W-lift).

This position is perfect for consolidating a powerful defense, yet you can still be attacked from W-lift's top or of someone comes up N-lift themselves. Yet the high-ground advantage works in your favour here, as you could simply drop a grenade down onto N-lift should someone challenge your position, and W-lift's position is weaker because of its open front, leaving someone on it wide open to a good missile or grenade. However, in 2v2/FFA it's obviously much harder to stay up here because of multiple threats at once, and you also must pay attention to the booster pack's spawn location to make sure it isn't snatched up.

Thus concludes my analysis for my favourite map, Zoness. It's definitely balanced enough on most fronts to warrant a green in all sections, and above is the evidence to prove it.




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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Fri Aug 09, 2013 7:56 pm

ThatLunaticFeline wrote:
Zoness is a stage commonly associated with slow, thoughtful matches and Febreeze.
ahahaha man this is never going to get old

Quote :
N-Lift is accessible from the ground floor at the following times in a 5-minute match:
that's bloody fantastic! you know it's occurred to me that we should have some better senses of timing in the time era; Quake players time RA and mega so why shouldn't we be able to time elevators and such? i'd be interested to see the times for Sarg as well.

yeah, i think the overwhelming consensus on this stage has always been that it's green and for a similar reason to Sarg: every level and room is connected to at least two others (you can go up/down a level, or you can leave through a door) and it means the gameplay flows. there isn't really a single room on this map that ever goes unused no matter what the matchup is. you can play it risky or you can play it safe or you can play it pushy or you can play it lazy (probably my preferred method).

as TLF pointed out the stage will punish you if you don't have the skills to back up your aggression and risk-taking and it'll reward you hugely if you do; it'll make sure you don't play stupidly but it won't force you into a formulaic style of play because who the hell is going to accurately predict what'll happen here? but it's never the stage that's randomly cutting you breaks, either; the severity of its punishments scale in direct proportion to your lack of ability. if you suicide, you died because you took the chance to engage in a bad situation and you rolled off without thinking, not because of some element beyond your control that landed you with a lousy jump into the water.

so yeah, green all the way. one of the best stages in the game. and TLF, again, thanks for putting in all the work you've done already for the analyses and the spawns and now the elevator timings too, it's been totally awesome[/quote]
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Sat Aug 10, 2013 11:17 am

HAXage wrote:
and TLF, again, thanks for putting in all the work you've done already for the analyses and the spawns and now the elevator timings too, it's been totally awesome
It's fine. It takes half an hour really, and that's minimal tome considering I don't yet have a job/anything else to do.

Anyway, a point I left out by accident:

Although I stated that the defensive playstyle is considerably weaker against offensive characters there is one very nice advantage for fleeing players, and this is the size of the map. Normally this would be a bonus for aggressors, but as is the same with Simp2 the smaller size means that there will always be a corner to take cover around. This is especially true around the central building - not only are there lots of great places to change direction suddenly, but the openings that lead indoors are also great to throw off chasers completely. Turn one corner, then before the enemy has time to turn it too, you're inside and running up the stairs to make your way over to N-lift and secure a sniper along the way.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Sat Aug 10, 2013 3:01 pm

I'll keep it short and sweet, Green for all.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Sun Aug 11, 2013 6:07 pm

then i feel pretty confident in saying that we're done here!

on to Titania, finally. i'm interested to know if anyone else actually likes this map 1v1 very much lol
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:31 pm

i'll open up the discussion here for once: i'm voting RED RED RED 1v1 here and it's for much the same reason that i'd vote Simp5 off the map list.

the primary issue on Titania is that it's bleedin enormous, not simply in square meters but in exactly how long it takes you to get from place to place: there is little to no interconnectivity between each area, and that's saying something considering there are basically only three areas in the map - the tunnel/HL looparound, the smaller spire, and the main large spire. traversing the main spire, in particular, is a HUGE chore for any player - no matter what their speed! it's not too often we see Falc players being forced to take three quarters of a minute to get places in a map, but it happens here, and as a regular occurrence.

all the areas here are connected to each other in basically a big triangle, but so what? there's a good twenty seconds of footrace distance between each of them, and the main spire - the most used area in the game (the only contender being the HL spawn near tunnel) - is only given a connecting bridge halfway up its considerable height. it's as if the mapmakers recognized that there was a need to expedite mobility to the main spire, but didn't really have a way to make that happen. you'll get stuck walking a massive distance to the top no matter where you go; the higher bridges (nade or sniper spawning points) are only useful in any way if you're already on that level and don't have to loop around to get up to them first. in most scenarios, you might as well walk the whole spiral up to the top.

really though, this wouldn't be nearly as much of a problem were it not for the fact that the top of the main spire is the only place you ever need to be in a 1v1 scenario. it's got both missile and HL, it's got sniper and invis if you're lucky, and most importantly it has the highest ground that ever sees use in the whole game, so far up that anyone sitting on it is completely unhittable with anything short of missiles (might i remind you that whoever's on that hill happens to control the missiles, too).

so what can you do here? essentially, there's only one way to play Titania; you have to get to the top, or you're going to be cannon fodder with no chance of exchanging shots, and you can't mask your intent to get to the top or be unpredictable getting there because:
1. all roads lead to a large chokepoint that leads to the top
2. the distance to the top is massive and you are required to spend MINUTES running it
3. given the map's considerable size, there is no risk in running straight up the spire without multitasking or dodging; the player who wastes time trying to feint will not get to the top first

and given the above, you could really just paste the whole argument regarding Simp5 in here and it'd apply just as equally, except spread out over many more minutes. we used to believe it was a character bias that made Simp5 unplayable; more recently, we've identified that it is in fact the king-of-the-hill layout and size that renders it useless. well, Titania is exactly that on steroids, or, more accurately, on sedatives, because it's even slower and even more single-minded because of it. i don't think anybody really loves this stage, but the fact that we've tolerated it this long is kind of weird to me, really.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:06 am

I genuinely don't want to analyse this map because I hate it so much. Too big, too boring, too bad that it's made for vehicles in mind...

I'll get around to the analysis soon but I will agree and say RED 1v1. It's just so badly designed for anything but vehicles.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:10 am

Red 1v1, yellow all else. BTW, amazing analyses, Feline!
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:40 am

oh yeah, forgot to mention 2v2/FFA - Cac thinks this one is fine for 4p and i guess he's right really; we don't have an abundance of 4p games here but this one is a pretty good demonstration of how things can go considering it has a totally even character selection and some fairly close moments: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

you're still spending oodles of time running around, but the main spire is maybe a little less of a sticking point and you're less likely to go two minutes without seeing another player. 2v2 i have my doubts about, considering it's big enough that one team could theoretically camp the top, but who knows - maybe even that would be more interesting than 1v1 here

so yeah i'd say no higher or lower than yellow for 2v2/FFA
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 12:20 pm

Red 1v1, yellow 2v2 and FFA. 2v2 might get campy but since there aren't any vids we don't know for sure how it would play out for sure and I think it should be tried at least once.
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:13 pm

Ok, here it comes.

Titania is my least favourite map in SFA and mostly because it takes 53 seconds to reach the top from the easternmost ramp leading up. As FALCO. As Peppy... 1 minute 23 seconds. Keep in mind I stayed on the inside edge.

This is quite literally stupid. It's obvious that this design choice was made because the map was created with Arwing battles in mind, but even in that regard the map is just not correctly done.

So now for the detailed parts and reasons why this map should definitely be red 1v1.

The map has three areas of focus in terms of its design. The first, and most influential, is clearly the summit. The second is the path leading up to the summit, but more specifically the section that bridges over to other platforms, and looks down upon the small 'The Pridelands' as I'll now refer to it, which is the third point to focus, but also the worst-designed.

('The Pridelands' is located in the center of this map, to the east of spawn 1, AKA 'The Big Black Spot On The Map With The Red Arrow In It')

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First, though, let's look at how the size of the map and the spread of the spawns contribute to gameplay. The size of the map is, like I've already said, attributed to the fact that the stage was made with vehicles in mind, but as Pride Rock (the mountain's new name, see what I'm going for here yet? sunny ) itself is so large the stage would still be immense, even without a million square miles of open desert surrounding it. This size does give the stage the opportunity for being a lot more favourable for more players in multiplayer, and also means that games on it wouldn't ever look alike - or so the designers thought.

The size of the map is insignificant in all gamemodes. Even in Booster Pack Brawl the game will always be defined at the summit just because of how important this map makes the ownership of the high ground advantage.

Item spawns would be mostly balanced and genuinely might be in the favour of the low-ground player if it weren't for the spawn of one very crucial item at the very top of the map - the missile launcher. This item gives unrestricted map control whereas without it the top would only be 100% useful for HL or camping. With a HL you can consistently pressure any attempts at a push to get to the summit, with only 3 areas which provide any decent cover from a well-directed missile.

This almost strays into ApCity snowball territory, where 'He who controls the spice summit controls the map' in its entirety. Of course, the snowball meets an abrupt and unsuspecting face when you run out of ammo, which is why the missile launcher should be used sparingly, and only at the best possible opportunities. However, this doesn't make any pusher feel any less worried, and this is one of the biggest reasons why 1v1 should be banned - the summit is maybe the most difficult position to push into in the entire game.

In ApCity, there are many different places where you can get in to te boiler. In Sarg, you can take two different lifts or many other different paths to reach the top level, most of which you can roll/dodge on and be perfectly safe. In Zoness, you can get the booster pack to force N-lift or take W-lift to get off a quick snipe, or even use one of the floating platforms and use its sides as cover.

In Titania, you have a thin ramp without sides to get you up to the summit. There is no other way to access the summit. Rolling to dodge while on the ramp is impossible - you'll just end up in an even worse position.

So Peppy got a lucky spawn and beat Falco to the summit. Falco doesn't have any barriers - all he has is a sniper and his blaster. Any push he makes will be quickly and devastatingly punished by Peppy, who'll bring down Falco to less than 50% HP in just over a second, with one RCB. Falco attempts a push and gets punished, but is forced to fall back when Peppy plants a grenade on the staircase and quickly charges up his blaster again. The only way to even have a chance of pushing up would be to have a barrier - Falco is forced to either retreat fully and go find a barrier then waste another 50 seconds climbing back up, in which time Peppy would have plenty of chances to snipe him with the missile launcher.

This brings me to my first area of focus, the summit. As I've already detailed, it's basically impossible to force a fight on someone with more HP than you, and it's a great place to force someone into submission with the threat of a missile launcher right to the face. The only other point that needs to be raised is the positioning that can be taken while up on the summit. With some good jumps you can make your way onto an even more terrifying position with one of the deadliest weapons in the game (and the weakest weapon on this stage) in the Fireburst Pod right by your side - you can climb even further up, which is only accessible from one position which is even more impossible to escape from, and in fact it grants an even bigger advantage due to being open in a 360 degree radius, giving even more un-challengable presence. I call this place Super-summit, as it compounds every advantage the summit normally gives you. To put it simply: if your opponent is up here, there's no way you're seeing him again. Even in PvP, it's just impossible to breach this position unless you make some sort of truce with other players, and even then it's still extremely difficult.

Pride Rock's other main focus point ties in strongly with The Pridelands. Point 2, as it is now called because I couldn't come up with a name of any sort, is the area where most central spawners will end up converging upon, whether high or low ground, in the earlygame. Point 2 is therefore quite strategically important and there will likely be many firefights located around it in FFA games. The only major point to be made about it that gives an unfair advantage in any way is once again to do with the high ground advantage which seems to be a theme of imbalance on this map.

Point 2 sits facing over The Pridelands. The Pridelands is low ground, Point 2 is high ground. There is literally no possible way to shoot up at Point 2 from The Pridelands. There is literally a billion possible ways to shoot down at The Pridelands from Point 2. Need I say any more?

I'm ending this analysis now because I'm sick of hearing the Titania music to the point of madness right now. In general, Titania is too strong in the favour of the player with the high-ground. In 2v2/FFA it's a little less imbalanced, but due to the focus on the summit and the almost cheap Super-summit it's just not fair in any gamemode. I vote for Red 1v1, Yellow 2v2 and Red FFA.


Last edited by ThatLunaticFeline on Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:25 pm; edited 4 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:16 pm

Red 1v1, yellow other wise
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PostSubject: Re: STAGE REVISION THREAD V4: THE CULLING (COMPLETE!!!)   Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:23 pm

sfafreak wrote:
Red 1v1, yellow all else. BTW, amazing analyses, Feline!
Thanks man! Well you'd better get ready to have your balls blown off for a Simp1 analysis then...
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