Height Manipulation: Part 2
There are a couple of basic issues people may run into when working with heights. In this part I have laid out the 3 basic ones.
Too Much Height
While height variation is a good thing to include in your map, you can overdo it. Accompanying height changes with flat areas is a key to map design. When your map is all height variation, all the time, you end up with a map like Distortion.
While a lot of people like distortion, it isn’t a great competitive map. I have seen so many comment that talk about being nauseous when walking around on that map. Why is that? It’s because there is nothing flat that allows you to orient yourself. When playing competitively, players want to know which way is up, so that they know which way gravity will work when they jump/fall/throw grenade/etc. When there is nothing flat, letting the player know what is down, the player gets confused and spends more time spinning around getting the right camera angle, rather than focusing on hitting an enemy’s head. When the player focuses more on navigating then aiming, the game is no longer competitive.
Too Tall Height
Avoid lots of extreme height changes. If there are like 10 towers, each 10 stories high, then you should reconsider your design. Because, height is an advantage, and like I said in the beginning, if you’re high enough to look straight down at a person, then all you will see is their head. And if you can see their head then all they can see is your butt. While you want to make the game interesting by making heights, you don’t want to make the game completely unfair.
Combining Types of Height
Some people try to combine types of height and really, there is only one way to do it. The correct way is this.
That is the only way you can combine heights. Its rolling because the ramp is a rolling height so when two people are fighting on the ramp, they are fighting on the rolling height. However, if someone is in the center circle of Guardian, they are shooting at one height, while the other person is shooting from a different height. In that situation, it’s a drop height. So, you can see that it’s not really two different types of heights at once, but one type for some situations, while another type for other situations. But, people try to make it both heights for any situation, and that’s when they run into a problem. Drop height is a cliff, and if you walk off of it, you fall. Rolling height is a hill, which takes you down gradually. If you want something to be both of these at the same time, you would have a gradual falling height. I call it the Stutter. The sure fire way to find a stutter is if when you walk on something, you jut into the air uncontrollably.
A map that has a block placed like that is a stutter. If you run off of the top of that, you will be in the air for a second or two. While you are there, you are helpless; you have to let gravity take over, like when you are helpless when you jump. The difference is that this isn’t controlled by you. The map makes you helpless, and that is something no player wants to feel like when playing on a competitive map. Stay away from the stutter.
Avoid these problems and your life as a forger using heights shall be much easier.