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Heroes Community > Tournament of Honor > Thread: Random Vs Set maps
Thread: Random Vs Set maps [ This thread is 2 pages long: (1) 2 ]
Mytical
Mytical

Hero of Order
Chaos seeking Harmony
posted August 18, 2009 04:49 AM
Edited by Mytical at 04:49, 18 Aug 2009.

Random Vs Set maps

Randomly generated maps against "Static Maps" (will explain this in a bit) from a 'Casual Player' point of view.

First Static Maps - Defined as any fan made (which are awesome) or Ubi made (which are kinda bleh) map where mines, artifacts (location, not neccessarily what kind), towns and such are in a specific place every time.

There is some element of randomness to these type of maps.  Creatures (kind, but often not location), Artifacts(kind, but often not location), and some other elements can be random.  It takes skill and knowledge to use what information of the map you know, and strategy is very important.  Some of the best maps I've ever played are fan made Static Maps like Rat Race.

Unfortunately there is a draw back to the Static Maps.  Somebody who has played them 100 times has too huge of advantage against somebody who has never played the map.  Take the 'perfect' map (where everything is perfectly balanced for all town.  Yes I know that this map does not quite exsist yet, though some are very very balanced).  Have a relatively new player (except those like me who are lucky if they remember their own name) play this map 100 times.  Have the best player ever, who has never played the map before, play against this person.  Chances are that the 'new player' is going to do a LOT better against the 'best player' then they would if starting on 'even ground' (ie both having played the map the same ammount of times).

So what chance does a 'new player' have even against an 'average player' who has played a map 1000 times?  Unless pure blind luck interfears ... next to none.

Please don't misunderstand me.  I do not think that strategy or skill does not play a part in these maps.  Far from it.  However, I do think that it takes a bit MORE skill to play totally random maps.  Because neither side has more experience with the map then the other.

Random maps however, do have a rather huge problem of their own.  There is always a chance that a key area for one town is blocked by too strong of a creature.  It might not have enough resource area, or one sides terrain could impose massive penalties for traveling while the other side gets their favored terrain.  So there is a lot more 'luck' involved as well as skill.

I like both types myself.  Static AND Random.  I do think Random takes a bit more skill, but then again I think choosing random heroes/towns takes more skill also (It is much harder to win with certain heroes then it is others). However mastering a hero and town requires a certain ammount of skill also.
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Infinitus
Infinitus


Supreme Hero
posted August 18, 2009 05:34 AM

I write about random maps here random maps, complete story .

Quote:
There is always a chance that a key area for one town is blocked by too strong of a creature.  It might not have enough resource area, or one sides terrain could impose massive penalties for traveling while the other side gets their favored terrain.  So there is a lot more 'luck' involved as well as skill.

Heroes 5 have so many factors, usually both players have some problems but also some luck ... Newbies that come to random realm complain a lot about this problems first 5 games, after, if they survive on random realm, things get a lot better For example i played game vs TOH veteran and on end of first week he say he surrender cos his Sylvan can't breach exits to other zones, both exits was guarded by ranged - zealots. His both dwellings was blocked by neutrals, and shortage of wood, town build problems ... He reported and after we played same map reverse game. I was sylvan this time and played same map from his side. I unblocked dwellings first week with no looses, no shortage of wood - i used trade post, zealots passed with two pixies looses ... I won reverse game too. So most important is to not loose your battle morale and be optimist and all will be ok, or maybe not so ok  

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insatiable
insatiable


Supreme Hero
Ultimate N00bidity
posted August 18, 2009 05:36 AM

i like both too.

rmg has some good fresh fun, specially if play random template
**btw, a nice combo is 'Very Hard monsters-(rmg creator settings)' + 'Normal dificulty-(launch map settings)'

fcorse.. creation maps'z da thang

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Infinitus
Infinitus


Supreme Hero
posted August 18, 2009 05:40 AM

Hi Insa, thanks for bring me to random realm then i was newbie, nice times on 1m in 3.0
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Mytical
Mytical

Hero of Order
Chaos seeking Harmony
posted August 18, 2009 05:46 AM

Generally I prefer random myself.  I really don't consider myself a 'new' player, but definately a casual one.  I play for fun mostly, and prefer opponits that do the same.  Though I will report a loss if the person wants when I lose, I never report a win if I win (because I don't play for the points).

Random for me is a much greater challenge (in my eyes), and I do enjoy a good challenge.  I like maps like Rat Race, Hourglass, and many others, however.  Both have their plus side and minus side.  I think Random gives newer or casual players a better chance, however.
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Salamandre
Salamandre


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
posted August 18, 2009 08:07 AM
Edited by Salamandre at 08:14, 18 Aug 2009.

Random template has nothing in common with a true random (using regular generator). The templates are like fixed maps, with changed variables (monsters are different each time, treasures are not in the same square) and their randomness is limited, one who knows the template geometry by heart will win over one who plays it first time.

However random templates are good to play because skilled people invested time into polishing them, so you can expect no major bugs.

On a true random the game is more interesting but the chances to get it end are slim. You can be blocked in your area, not get basic resources, you can get several towns of same alignment and so on. Moreover there is a problem with cheating when playing a true random, as the host can view the map in the editor, while the guest can't.

Fixed maps are good because everything has been tested and retested, so while you know whats going on, you are not forced to adopt many rules about conservatories, misplaced guards, stacking towns etc.

However one could get bored when playing fixed because in most cases there are no more surprises when you know the map. It requires great map making talent to get a fixed map live forever.

Back in times, ToH players preferred fixed maps. Now randoms templates rule. It is impossible to say which are better, depends of personal tastes. Some say players are better now, thus randoms. I don't think so. They still use the same 4-5 heros to win, same 4-5 spells and same races over and over. Gamers are same, maps not.

Of course my statements apply to HoMM3, as I have no idea how advanced are the HoMM5 templates.
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Elvin
Elvin

Hero of Order
Stillness within Movement
posted August 18, 2009 08:47 AM

Random in H5 is lame. Could have been so much better but right now it's not and has many flaws, just look at infinitus' examples. Best proof that they lack balance or any level of sophistication.

Quote:
Random template has nothing in common with a true random (using regular generator). The templates are like fixed maps, with changed variables (monsters are different each time, treasures are not in the same square) and their randomness is limited, one who knows the template geometry by heart will win over one who plays it first time.

Quote:
You can be blocked in your area, not get basic resources, you can get several towns of same alignment and so on.


H5 is by nature not balanced for random situations so to have a balanced game you have to play a balanced map. If something of the above happens to you but not your opponent then tough luck, it's all a roll dice. It can be fun but often meaningless and on top of that a random map will never have a design, character, individuality a custom map can have. That is not to say I enjoy all custom maps, twilight or battlezone types are not my cup of tea but I still consider them superior in many ways.

Things I generally enjoy in custom:

Being able to get castle and tier 7 assuming I play my cards well and take the right risks.
Nice little things like a scripted event.
Being able to creep and level up at a fast pace.
Finishing a map by week 4-6, longer is an exercise in soulless generic epic creeping.
More than one routes and well placed monoliths but again not like battlezone.
Facing an imaginative guardian(be it a garrison or mixed neutral stack) that makes you develop a strategy in taking it down than just a generic lots/horde of tier 7.
Special effects, eyecandy.
Being able to follow their opponent's progress through revealed locations or by knowing the map beforehand. Adds another dimension to developing your strategy.

Of course custom maps won't live forever, that is why they create new ones. Best map experience is playing blind on a brand new map though it's not easy to arrange often.
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Jinxer
Jinxer


Legendary Hero
*****
posted August 18, 2009 08:56 AM

@ Elvin


Sounds like you just described to the letter:

GENESIS
BattleZone
DarkRealm  

So your saying that if I made an update for BattleZone that made the monoliths work in similar mannor as Genesis... then it to would fit your idea of Perfect map  I will work on granting your wish
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Elvin
Elvin

Hero of Order
Stillness within Movement
posted August 18, 2009 09:12 AM
Edited by Elvin at 09:16, 18 Aug 2009.

I suppose there are many designs that could fit above features Number of dwellings and amount of paths can change a lot, when there is overabundance - as battlezone felt to me - it kinda sucks the fun out of it, feels like playing a campaign. Whereas I'd enjoy better a more straightforward if a bit random map like rat race. But RR has other flaws so in the end we come back to personal taste. To give another example while dragon hill was fun but it dragged on a bit, could not match the abysmal's action, those early challenging garrisons and fast utopia felt good. But then it had what I dislike in genesis, many epic garrisons around. For me more is less in this case, prolongs the game and detracts from the fun.

Edit: But anyway let's not derail the topic with custom personal preferences
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Infinitus
Infinitus


Supreme Hero
posted August 18, 2009 09:30 AM
Edited by infinitus at 09:32, 18 Aug 2009.

Quote:
H5 is by nature not balanced for random situations so to have a balanced game you have to play a balanced map.

All custom maps are made in the name of balance. This way is easier to explain to newbies why they need to play this custom map over and over ... I played almost all custom maps and still don't find were is this ultimate balance is ... In term of balance don't think let's say Genesis is superior to 2m random map.

Quote:
If something of the above happens to you but not your opponent then tough luck, it's all a roll dice.

Play vs me on random 2m and i will show you the roll of dice
Let's say Willgefors will play vs medium power player on random 2m, believe or not score will be 10-0 no matter what ...  
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Elvin
Elvin

Hero of Order
Stillness within Movement
posted August 18, 2009 09:40 AM

There is no ultimate balance. So to make things fairer you play maps that has none at all I don't even know why I bother arguing that when you make it pretty obvious from the things you've said and the replays you've posted. And wilgefors could be doing the same in custom maps so that's a pretty weak argument. Expert players almost always defeat medium ones, takes more than luck to take one down.

Actually where did I say playing a custom map over and over again? If you don't like one you play another, simple story I believe.
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Infinitus
Infinitus


Supreme Hero
posted August 18, 2009 09:48 AM

Y, lost time to write here cos anyway we will play what we like, it's mater of taste not balance ...
I just prefer to play H5, you prefer mod of heroes 5. Other good custom map, how many ? For my good custom is HG, Genesis, RR maybe one or two more ... 2m random map is equivalent to millions of custom maps ... Each game i have fresh new map ...
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Elvin
Elvin

Hero of Order
Stillness within Movement
posted August 18, 2009 09:52 AM

Quote:
I just prefer to play H5, you prefer mod of heroes 5.

That is incorrect we are not playing different games. What changes is the features of each map, 'rules' if you prefer.
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Salamandre
Salamandre


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
posted August 18, 2009 10:57 AM

Quote:

H5 is by nature not balanced for random situations so to have a balanced game you have to play a balanced map.


Or script a special balanced game for random maps. Look at TE for HoMM3. They scripted all the luck factors so now there is a cold and balanced game. I don't say it is good, but a good scripter could remove all unbalanced aspects of a game and make a special edition to use exclusively on random maps.
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JoeTheLoser
JoeTheLoser


Hired Hero
posted August 19, 2009 02:43 PM

First off, I prefer random maps...but understand the appeal of customs.

Quote:
However, I do think that it takes a bit MORE skill to play totally random maps.  Because neither side has more experience with the map then the other.


While that is generally true, knowing the "template" design gives you a bit of an advantage.  While I try not to look at the template or study each of them (as Infinitus seems to), after playing a couple hundred random maps, you get to know them just through routine.

Quote:
Random maps however, do have a rather huge problem of their own....one sides terrain could impose massive penalties for traveling while the other side gets their favored terrain


This, in my opinion, is the BIGGEST problem for randoms.  Fortunately, there are a couple solutions:
(A) Pick towns before-hand and set them in map setup ('tis ok solution, but I prefer random)
(B) Leave "hide mini-map" unchecked and keep generating until both on grass (kind of a 'blah' solution...no longer completely RANDOM)
(C) Generate map with 4 RANDOM TOWNS (actually SET each town at RANDOM), then have player who did not generate the map assign BOTH players numbers prior to opening up the game...so it truly is random.
---lately I've been doing modified form of this where we open up the map and person who didn't generate map has choice of picking from the 4 town options FIRST or letting person who generated map pick first and then counter.

Quote:

I do think Random takes a bit more skill, but then again I think choosing random heroes/towns takes more skill also (It is much harder to win with certain heroes then it is others)


Totally agree that random heroes/towns takes more skill.  And picking Sylvan/Ossir every time would just seem boring.  Randoms taking more "skill" overall is a bit overboard though.  I think randoms force you to ADAPT more and make you more "skilled" at improvising...but that is not the same as "SKILL" in the game.

Quote:
rmg has some good fresh fun, specially if play random template


Yeah...I definitely like going random template.  Problem is...we need more template (for ex: HUGE map, no water, no under has only 2 templates).  Anyone know how to import more templates??? (other than iRMG?)

Quote:
Finishing a map by week 4-6, longer is an exercise in soulless generic epic creeping.


Well, my current "preferred" setup is (mostly because templates are fresh to me...and I think there are 4 possibilities) ---
Map size: Impossible
Difficulty: Hard
Water/Under: Yes/No or No/No
Experience/Resources: 3/3, 4/3, 3/4, 4/4
Monsters: Very Strong (sometimes strong...if no water)
Random Town/Hero (as described above, so terrain is good)

Many times map finish week 5-7...but sometimes go much later (last one I played was week 11 I think...which was abnormally long).  That is one of the beauties of random maps...you never know when an attack might come...in premades you can guess down to the day when you will meet many times.

If ya ever want to play Mythical...I'm on gameranger a lot (handle: JoeTheLoser)...let me know.  I've kind of stopped playing "for points"...but instead just enjoy the game.

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Elvin
Elvin

Hero of Order
Stillness within Movement
posted August 19, 2009 03:00 PM

About skill I'd say that twilight world is the proof that custom maps can require more skill. At least some of them, it is too broad a generalization to make. I recently heard that giants latest version has pretty hardcore creeping, curious to try it one day. That is not to say I consider random creeping easy.. I have played random on heroic and it took some time until things got rolling, rough beginning.
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Vesuvius
Vesuvius

Hero of Order
Honor Above all Else
posted August 19, 2009 03:35 PM

I've always preferred randomly generated maps, it keep things fresh, and your opponent can't 'overtrain' on them.
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Shares
Shares


Supreme Hero
I am. Thusly I am.
posted August 19, 2009 03:50 PM

I've always prefered the random maps, even though they are much more unbalanced and luck-controlled. I always find the static maps predictable the first time and boring the second. So, for me, being unable to play the same map twice, random maps are far superior. The only map I've enjoyed several times is Warlords in Heroes III, but I almost only play it with my brothers, and I guess I enjoy all maps with them. Ahh! I miss them.

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JoeTheLoser
JoeTheLoser


Hired Hero
posted August 19, 2009 04:30 PM

Quote:
About skill I'd say that twilight world is the proof that custom maps can require more skill. At least some of them, it is too broad a generalization to make. I recently heard that giants latest version has pretty hardcore creeping, curious to try it one day. That is not to say I consider random creeping easy.. I have played random on heroic and it took some time until things got rolling, rough beginning.


I think Twillight World is probably the "best" custom map I've played.  1st time it was fun and new and very good, 2nd time knew what I was doing but sill a little challenging..so fun.  By the third time, I fully knew what to expect...while still fun, lost a bit of it's luster...I knew by the end I wouldn't want to give it a fourth game (leave it at three and be very impressed and enjoyed).  Other customs (which I won't mention, as I don't want to insult the great amount of work that goes into them by the map makers) don't hold my interest past 1-2 times.  

I think you totally right though Elvin...early in game RMGs are probably harder...but as you progress "through" the map, the level of difficulties stays roughly the same..so in the end you just blow through most creatures.  Customs are designed to have increasing difficulties as you progress which RMGs (for the most part) fail to have.

Although there is one template I played recently I really liked (I think it was 2.4c / very strong monsters /Impossible size, no water) that had increasing difficulties for breakout:
Breakout #1 -- something like 15 arch devils + 30 Pit Fiends + 75 hell stallions + throng succubus. (week 5 breakout I think...dallied a bit in my area)
Breakout #2 (monolith) -- 200 storm titans / 125 lava dragons 180 thunder thanes (week 8 breakout)
Breakout #3 -- 475 magma dragons (waited until week 10...and at this point they outgrowing you at 50+ per week)

I thought the progression of difficulty was pretty good (although a bit extreme)

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Jinxer
Jinxer


Legendary Hero
*****
posted August 19, 2009 09:04 PM

I would Love to play Randoms.. but there are 2 main things that prevent me...

1- Templates.. I guess its not possible to generate a COMPLETELY random experience every time.. once I found out that there Had to be a template for the random to generate from.. it ruined it for me.. Cause it was then that I realized that it was not truely 100% random.. and I wondered how my opponents was always finding me soo soon.

2- Which leads me to my 2nd reason.. unstable breaking times.. have played on maps that was HUGE size and sim turn break week 2 and here comes my opponent down the road to me... before game really gets rolling. And with that said... most people want to play large no under.. which means.. usually finding each other week 3 and thats to early since takes 1-2 weeks to get rollin good.  I never understood why people want to start with heroic or expert etc.. when all that does it mean it takes 2 weeks to get going.. by not just start with normal level.. and speed game up some.
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