Many of you may remember the glory days of the Warcraft III mapping scene and are sad to see that there hasn't been a similar golden age in StarCraft II.
Well I'm right there with you and after all this time I've come to the conclusion that one of the major reasons why we're in the state we're in now as a community is largely due to something that changed between now and then.
Fact of the matter is, back in the days of Warcraft III it was trivial for anyone to take a custom they found and enjoyed playing and could open it up in the World Editor to see what made that map tick. Not only did this result in countless variations for any particular map, but it was also instrumental in helping people learn how to use the tool and do awesome things with it.
In StarCraft II however, developers can lock their maps, making it difficult (though not entirely impossible) for others to see what's going on under the hood.
I think this needs to change.
While I can't force everyone to make their work available to the public, I can at least set an example and hope that others will join in.
So with that I've created this thread to serve as a quick list for newcomers to find Open-Sourced maps to study with.
To kick things off, I'm releasing one of my projects: Tower Defense Classic. Appropriately, this map was an effort to recreate a map that I greatly enjoyed from Warcraft III: Arkguil Tower Defense, one of the first maps that I opened up and tinkered around in. See the following post for more information.
That all said, I'm leaving it up to the each uploader to decide how much supporting information they want to include along with their releases. This is NOT a thread for asking questions. Please only post if you have a map to release to the public so as to keep this thread easy to find maps to download. Moderators please feel free to edit this post should you like to keep a concise list of released maps.
Thanks to everyone who decides to participate in this effort! Your contributions will serve to help the community as whole continue to grow.
- This map is quite old now (originally published in Jan 2011), and as such it's contents are a bit dated.
- Most of the work that went into this map can be found in the Triggers. This is not a data heavy map.
- There unfortunately aren't many, if any comments in the triggers for this map. (Sorry, I know I'm a horrible person for that)
Features of interest:
- Multiple game modes and difficulty settings with a voting system to set these options.
- Statistics tracking system that records game play data between games.
- Flexible variable driven spawning system designed to be used for a variety of wave-based game types with any number of waves.
DISCLAIMER: This map is being released AS-IS. Please do not contact me with questions regarding how something in the map works. I will not answer you, nor is it likely that I remember how every detail of the map works given how long it's been since I last worked on the map. Everything in the map is fairly well organized so it shouldn't be too hard to sift through.
Even though I agree with you on that more open source maps could possibly improve the mapmaking community, you have to realize that this is not really something that changed from WC3 to SC2.
In Warcraft 3, there were 3rd party applications that could lock your map, making it unopenable in the editor. As I recall it, many of the popular maps used this.
Now sure, you could still extract the map script, but that is possible in SC2 as well IIRC.
Personally, I have nothing against people learning from my maps (although some of my triggers and systems are horrible), but I don't want people to publish different versions of my map, since it feels like people steal potential players from my map to theirs.
I'm probably not going to upload Cruiser Command as open source, however some of my other maps might become open source when they get more finished.
Actually, it was a major change. As you said, locking maps in WC3 required the use of third party applications and as such it wasn't a very common practice, especially in the beginning. In SC2 this was present from day one, and as such many if not most developers opt to lock their maps. On top of that, the new Battle.net platform makes it far less common for players to find and share the map files themselves, since they are readily available in the client and do not require you to get a map from another player.
I have nothing against people who want to keep their maps locked. All of mine have been like that since the beginning too. This is a completely voluntary effort.
However, making a thread for those who want to post example maps, old projects, for others to learn from isn't a bad idea at all, could bring some new interesting example maps in, and could also help put all the existing ones in a single place.
Anyways, I'm not exactly willing to share my main project with anyone at this point, but I will attach a short project I threw together for that Contest Cloud Spokes had a week or two back. It is simple, it is unpolished, but it does possess the following:
Some interesting ways to use UI images to give the game a different feel.
How to switch weapons based on what you currently have using keyboard commands or clicking UI(simplified, it could easily be reworked to use any weapon)
How to spawn monsters in a map using a function to do all the guesswork for you
How to adjust behaviors/unit values in data using triggers.
Includes a few monsters from my main project(ram with knockback, cow that is only dangerous when on fire, exploding women, slimes, and wolves that can either run around you, attack you, or jump attack you).
Rocket Launcher is a collision based projectile, it aims at the target in general, but can miss or hit stuff behind it or in front of it, if anyone didn't know how to do that yet.
Some basic dref field useage for some of the data.
Some actor message sending using triggers only to make the portals activate when monsters spawn.
I'm sure is examples of other stuff too, obviously the images I imported can be used for whatever you want too.
It's really super easy to open a SC2 map and it was how I learned; however, you are right that there aren't exactly a lot of examples to learn from. But it's also not the reason the mapping scene in a relatively stagnant state.
I will be releasing the Squadron Tower Defense source in about a month or so. It's not the most complex map, but triggers are written (more or less) cleanly and I do a lot of clever trigger and data work that I haven't encountered a whole lot. Hopefully it'll be of some help for people starting out.
EDIT: If anyone is starting out and REALLY wants it now, then send me a message.
Plus I think a lot of casual people will look into editing hearing that the number 1 game is now open source.
Hopefully! I'm really hoping to bang out a clean custom UI, implement a tutorial/hand holding system for new people, and a clean up a lot of editor tags here and there first. Unfortunately I work at least 40-60 hours a week so it will probably be at least a month or more before I'd be happy (or rather, not embarrassed) with putting the source out there.
Although the Actor system still boggle the hell out of my brain so that will remain a mess :(
I agree with this completely, and that's why I left all my maps unprotected.
My oldest is Build Your Own Maze. It's a pretty simple game where you make an obstacle course for other players to try to beat. Might be useful for beginners.
My latest is Dogfighters. Much more advanced triggers, and it implements my 3D physics engine. From this you could learn advanced trigger concepts like orienting an actor to any yaw/pitch/roll, getting the vector the camera is facing, and of course physics. For that you might want to go through my tutorial first.
I have an idea as well. Everyone has that first map (or couple of maps) that were made when they were using how to use the editor. They, to put it plainly, suck. I think that open source is a great idea, but if people were to fix up some maps to show a "how to and how not to do something", I think that would be very useful. I'm not sure how it would be navigated, but it would be interesting.