Friday, January 11, 2008

War Rock Maps

The Wanderer lost

New Map! This is the first War Rock map that is dimly lit and it's set in a subway to boot! The map is designed to be fought with literally run-and-gun tactics; camping will definitely get you killed as the map has multiple paths that will allow enemies to blindside you. Except if you are playing next to your teammates and/or you can coordinate with each other to provide cover fire, this map is best played by moving to different parts of the map everytime you kill someone.

Wait. I thought Zakarum Zealots and Blunderbores live here? Where's my +7 longsword?!!

Monsters are coming out of the tombs! How do you use this artifact?!! AAAAIIIIEEEEE----*

Now this --- this is a total winner. Good potential. 'Could be the next AYB phenomenon. Prepare your bases and move all Zig; they are back.

Yep, it's a subway all right. Where's the one that goes all the way to SM? I need to go to Datablitz.


For some reason Nerbil reminds me of Half-life 2. It goes without saying that this map is composed of two bases, albeit this one is flanked by a bridge at one side and an open expanse in the other. A railroad track runs under the bridge and separates the two bases. The middle region is littered with huge containers. This is also the first War Rock map I have played in that has a weather effect, namely snow.

Players have complained however, that one side has a sniper’s nest and has the higher ground. Unless some fix could be made this isn’t really a well-balanced battle terrain.

Change the skins to rebels and stormtroopers, take away the present-time industrial look and this may as well be Hoth. Hmmm, a free sci-fi, team- and class-based multiplayer shooter. Oh, well, never hurts to dream...emoticon

(Later note: Now I understand what that fellow in the War Rock forums was yammering about the area in the Derbaran side where the healing rack is located being inverted. It is!! The open side, unlike that of the NIUs’, faces the enemy side! If you are one of the Derbarans and you are healing yourself using the rack, there is absolutely no cover for you from enemy snipers from the other side! Granted, this reduces down time for you as you can still fire from where you are standing and down enemy soldiers but still, if your members are newbies and there are pro snipers in the other side, it’s nighty-night scorey. Tut, tut, NIU operatives must have designed this one.)

Here’s a slightly older map. Nothing like midday gunfights to kick out the Doom 3 kinks…. (I enabled 2x anti-aliasing so this one’s cleaner to look at than the first picture.)

Here’s an old favorite of mine that’s popular with the majority of the game’s player base:

Two bases are separated by three warehouses in the middle with two hills flanking both sides of the map. Vehicles are available namely anti-personnel tanks, motorcycles, and humvees. Perfect for assault, heavy troopers, and snipers alike. Engineers won’t find much use here however, the map being too small — and consequently dangerous — for lightly-armed engineers to alight and fix vehicles. Medics are of course, too indispensable for any team to exclude in their lineup in any map.

Another golden oldie that was added way back in the early beta days of the game:

I like this one because of its multi-storey buildings that overlook large parts of the map. The map still forces teams to come up with a perfect balance of snipers and close-range classes though as the center is a mass of wires, girders, and small structures where combatants can hide before making sprints for the enemy base. Humvees are available making heavy weapon troopers valuable in teams.

The one shown below is my favorite if I want to give my eyes a rest. This is to date, the largest map released in the game and the vehicles in it are no less colossal. Tanks — "real" tanks — this time, rumble through the desertscape and are the keys to winning Ohara. This is also the only map where the efficiency of assault and medics are trimmed down somewhat. Heavy troopers, engineers, and snipers have heightened usefulness here due to the absence of shelter and the vehicle-centered gameplay. The firefights are less frenetic, being more deliberate as the wide expanse isolates close-quarter combat to the scattered neutral bases and these are far between. There are also motorcycles, humvees and supply trucks in the map.

If the one above is my favorite in the Battle Group servers, the one below is the one I hate most. The map is a long stretch of cityscape with narrow halls that are an assault trooper’s worst nightmare. While humongous fun can still be had from close- and long-range soldiers alike, it’s the drop in framerates that annoy me whenever the choppers show up. I cannot imagine how this affects cafe users, who largely compose the game’s player base and who are limited to using low-end gaming machines. I’m using a Pentium 4 though so this is a major factor. Still, all other maps, including Ohara, which is way larger, do not have this flaw. I wonder…

I like Zakhar’s style of having war machines in a very narrow map though as it introduces a gameplay that is unique from the others.


Gygyman said...

Nice review of these maps. I think the major unbalance in this game is the small number of free weapons, and the power they possess.