Map design is a difficult task as what features a map has is almost entirely subjective. Some people enjoy wide, open maps while others prefer tight, urban scenarios.
One unusual aspect of Warthunder is its longevity and the requirement to continue to provide engagement to long term players. I have over 10,000 hours.
Can Gaijin provide details on their objectives/principles/rules when it comes to map design?
For example, a key principle I propose:
It should not be possible to snipe to the enemy spawn within 30 seconds of a match starting. With varying internet and computer speeds it is possible to spawn into some maps and be sniped from the very start of a game. It is astonishing that the very recent winter version of the Poland map had this feature.
The recent changes to European Province and Jungle do create some concern. Who is the target audience that Gaijin wishes to appeal to? Both maps seem to have been substantially simplified, or even “dumbed down”.
European Province. I am not sure what the intention of the changes was, but it has effectively created flanking “tunnels” allowing the close approach to each spawn while remaining in cover. This was one of the few maps with wide open spaces, supporting high-tier, open gameplay.
Jungle. This should be renamed to “Desert Island”. I can only describe this as a very dumbed-down version of the previous version. The distinct play style offered by the foliage has been removed.
Who/what is the target demographic that is being catered to? Are the changes being made based on objective data (e.g. heat maps) or a vocal minority? How about a poll of players?
Again, I appreciate that map design is challenging, but if you remove all challenge from maps, engagement for experienced players will also be removed.
This is a confusing comment given the principle you propsed earlier. The southwestern spawn on european province was an open field, in clear view of a ridgeline just outside of the opposite spawn. the other team could drive for 5 seconds, then have a clear view of anyone who had spawned in the southwestern spawn, and they were really free kills for anyone with a laser rangefinder. the recent changes have mitigated this massively with trenches now to get out of the spawn. In the past on this map, the “high teir, open gameplay” was people sitting in one of the few small wooded sections and killing anyone respawning, or trying to move about the map, it was not balanced or fun. whoever won the initial engagement and could get to the power positions quickly just won the game.
Almost certainly they take data from the ban/like/dislike filter to chose maps to change, then use heatmaps to see where there are inbalances and parts that need changing. In the past they have stated that according to their heatmaps, port novorrissiysk is a balanced map with plenty of potential to push and flank, thats not their exact words but you get what i mean, they do use heatmaps to make changes. If you are suggesting a poll, where? In game? that is what the map filter is already. on the forums? Maybe 100 people voting is not a good metric to make changes from.
Perhaps consider all versions of this map? You are exactly correct when describing this scenario, however, the problem I describe is with the more common version of the map, with the 3 capture points in the town. So while addressing the problem you describe in your map version, they have inadvertantly made the version I describe significantly worse! In the image above, the changes made to the south of the town provide significant cover when approaching either spawn to then spawn camp.
Previously they have had various polls, presented in the hangar. It was far more than “maybe 100 people” who responded. Did you not notice these?
The map filter identifies what maps people prefer. It doesn’t have any means to provide feedback about what it is that people don’t like about maps.
Agree. The recent map changes feel like they’ve been made to help dumb players.
It sometimes feels like Gaijin maybe listen too much to players from “the community”, which consist primarily of “less good” players, who just complains about pretty much anything. While good players aren’t really all that vocal.