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Homeslice
30th Oct 2004, 09:48 AM
Seems like lots of people were angry at that review (I haven't tried the map yet though), but we shouldn't have the flaming occur at Insite, so if anyone needs to vent and/or defend themselves, then do it here.

SkaarjMaster
30th Oct 2004, 03:35 PM
"I think being slammed by reviewers enough times might be enough reason to maybe try making original maps. Just a remake of an O.K. map, I still think the default bot load needs to be ONE in this map (I don't care how it's done). This was never one of my favorite UT levels, especially in the SPL, hehe (i.e. - that a$$hole Xan was in it). ...just for the record, MsM and others have some good and great remakes but the CTF version for UT2003 and this one for UT2004 didn't really scream "remake me". The original was not all that exciting and should just have been left alone for UT2003 and UT2004. That's my opinion on the matter anyway. I believe the review was harsh for this very reason."

My original comments stand. I realize that MsM was searching for a 1on1 map to remake, but there has to be a better choice than this one.

As an aside, I go for the flak cannon every time I play this map; I'm not sure if that's good or bad but it's just the flak ho in me. ;)

T2A`
30th Oct 2004, 04:29 PM
First off, I'd like to apologize to anyone I offended, pissed off, etc. Obviously I was desensitized to the comments because they didn't seem all that harsh to me, more like "Dude, you have lots of skill and it looks like it's going to waste when you remake maps like this." But, regardless of what the intentions were, I should have realized people might not have taken it the same way and changed the wording, so for that, I'm sorry.

Secondly, I don't mind remakes. It is true that I would much rather see an author put his skill towards something original, but I'm not totally against remakes altogether, especially if the map plays well. One of those remakes of Malevolence is high up on my list of maps I like to play (not sure whose it is, at the moment). This map, though well-put together, just doesn't have very much playability at all, given that my idea of a good DM map is DM-Waisten, and my idea of a good 1on1 DM map is Roughinery or Rankin. Oblivion just isn't a good map to me, and I couldn't see a reason for it being remade. MsM is right that I didn't know this was for a 1on1 pack, but even then, there are many more maps that are actual well-playing 1on1 maps that could have been included, rather than this map, which, as far as I can gather, is only called 1on1 because it's small. A true 1on1 map isn't about small size. It's about the layout, item placement, and powerup control. It's about being able to predict your opponent's movements and cut him off, all while giving the other guy a chance to cut you off. It's about sounds, whether triggered or from items, that give away your oppenent's position, and strategy on how to get the drop on him without him getting the drop on you. So when you call your map 1on1, I, and others, automatically assume it's going to be like that. The low score doesn't come from the visuals, because they are, in fact, quite good. The low score stems from the only real playability being "grab the flak or rockets and spam one of three straight hallways until you win." Maybe the score would have been a bit higher had this not been classified as 1on1, since there's generally a little less thought and prediction in regular DM games, but I can't see it garnering above a 5.

Now, I'm willing to go back and edit out all the questionable stuff I said in trying to point out that this is technically not a good 1on1 map and trying to get MsM to use his skill for some new maps, if that's what people want. I can even add a bit about how the meshes are placed and texturing if need be, since I did purposefully decide not to go into detail about it because I felt it really had no bearing. Otherwise, we can just leave it as it is, solidifying my "jackassedness" in history for all to see in the future, and chalk this up as a bad review. In a perfect world, there would be no hard feelings and things would continue as normally, so I'm just gonna hope that I haven't burned any bridges here and there aren't any lasting hard feelings. :hmm:

If anyone needs to tell me off or something even after this explanation, PM me, or email turns2ashes at beyondunreal.com.

Thunderstrike
30th Oct 2004, 09:52 PM
I allowed this review to go through because I agree with the points T2A raised. A bit harsh? Maybe, but everyone's allowed the odd harsh review, and his points were valid.

Here's what I think. The suggestion that Oblivion be used as a "1on1" map is patently ridiculous. As T2A mentions, any dueller worth his salt will avoid this map because it simply offers close to nil game play. The original was never anything but a training level before things got serious. Even in "the day", the level was never used for any kind of competetive match. The level had a purpose which it served, but it was a disposable level. To remake something which had already been disposed of was a very poor choice on Mark's part. However, this decision didn't come as a surprise to me. Mark's judgement on his remakes has been in decline for some time. I felt he peaked around the time of his remake of DOM-Cinder, in my review of which I gave due credit. After that the remake levels became more and more like a production line, with less and less creativity and flair. Each successive level also seemed more and more rushed, as if Mark had set himself some kind of deadline which could not be missed at the expense of all else. I noted in my review of his conversion of Malevolence that it seemed rushed, and Oblivion seems even more a victim of this. This conversion is insipid, uninspired and debasing for both the original level and Mark. This level so completely detracts from this author's reputation that something was clearly amiss during its construction. In his text file for DOM-Cinder Mark stated that it would be the last remake he would be doing, and that clearly became untrue very quickly. I think his pursuit of remaking levels has resulted in a stagnating of the quality of his works, perhaps even in some respects a regression. Perhaps that's the reason I allowed the review to go through in the first place. As Skaarj says, it should serve as a form of alarm.

I also found it interesting to have T2A review this level as he, like almost all current reviewers (with the exception of Homeslice and myself), came to the UT community for 2004 and is, if you'll pardon the wording, oblivious to the history of the level or any other for UT. I was the one that pointed out the similarity in function of the original Oblivion and TrainingDay for UT2k3. T2A was originally under the impression that the level was a CTF in UT because Mark had originally made a CTF conversion. Thus, the reviewer carried no level bias into the review, he has stated he has no bias towards remakes, and as such he is a good representation of the new kind of players likely to be taking a look at this level. They have no nostalgia to taint their views on these remakes. They judge them amongst all the other levels available for the new game. I find it interesting that T2A was so scathing on the layout and the map in general. I don't think it was wrong. I don't think it was misguided. He was presented with an, at best, average to poor UT level and judged it accordingly.

Finally, a look at Mark's portfolio. Let me first say that reviewers write reviews in their own time, and as such they are not obligated to go traipsing around the internet to locate other works by the author. I suggest to Mark that he include a listing of his other works in his text files for his levels, as this is currently omitted, so that it is easy for anyone to see a list of his works. Therefore, T2A looked at the reviews the Insite team has done of the author's works. Of the eleven reviewed (including this review), only Nexus qualifies as an original work. As Homelsice indicated in his review of Skystation, Morpheus by any other name is still Morpheus and the author made no attempt to deflect the observation. This rates at pretty much 9% of reviewed works as being original. However, I thought the matter warranted further research so I dropped into MapRaider to see what they had on the author. The author's page said it listed 36 levels, although from the links I could only see 31. That is a lot of levels. Of the 31 listings (two of which were remake map packs), only six were not remakes (again I will not count Skystation). Six out of 31. Better at just over 19% original. This still represents a less than 1 out of 5 works as original. To be brutally frank, the screenshots of DM-HadleysHope, CTF-HadleysHope, DM-Corridor, DM-Factory][ and DM-DMP-1on1-Alpha don't invite their downloading. However, screenshots are not the be-all and end-all, but they can be an indicator. Last I heard, CTF-Tomb of Rameses was unfinished. You submitted a review request for that one, Mark, but then asked us to remove it as it was unfinished. We haven't heard since. It had some potential but there were very apparent layout issues. Mark, if you really want some recognition on Insite for your original works you should be submitting them for review. I enjoyed Nexus, from what I can remember. I know you are a competent level designer with a lot of promise, but T2A's remark about you putting your effort into original work, especially from now on, is something I am in complete agreeance with.

I don't think the review needs to be reworded because it encapsulates the reaction of a fresh view of a tired old level. It is honest, albeit brutally so, but that is why it should remain unchanged. It will hopefully also stand as a crossroads. An opportunity for the author to decide what path he will chose moving into the future. I do not doubt the author's ability, and neither does T2A. The question is, what tasks will that ability be bent to? I know how I hope the author will reply; with levels for us to review.

{DAM}MoxNix
30th Oct 2004, 10:34 PM
Myself, I never thought much of Oblivian as a UT map and I think even less of it as a UT2k4 map. I even agree with nearly everything the reviewer and his defenders have to say about the actual map.

Unfortunately the reviewer had very little to say about the actual map. Half that "review" was nothing but a long rambling rant about remakes and had nothing to do with actual map being reviewed. Also the entire thing was liberally salted with flames and insults. That was uncalled for and way out of line.

Yournan
1st Nov 2004, 10:21 AM
First off, I'd like to apologize to anyone I offended, pissed off, etc. Obviously I was desensitized to the comments because they didn't seem all that harsh to me, more like "Dude, you have lots of skill and it looks like it's going to waste when you remake maps like this." But, regardless of what the intentions were, I should have realized people might not have taken it the same way and changed the wording, so for that, I'm sorry.

Secondly, I don't mind remakes. It is true that I would much rather see an author put his skill towards something original, but I'm not totally against remakes altogether, especially if the map plays well. One of those remakes of Malevolence is high up on my list of maps I like to play (not sure whose it is, at the moment). This map, though well-put together, just doesn't have very much playability at all, given that my idea of a good DM map is DM-Waisten, and my idea of a good 1on1 DM map is Roughinery or Rankin. Oblivion just isn't a good map to me, and I couldn't see a reason for it being remade. MsM is right that I didn't know this was for a 1on1 pack, but even then, there are many more maps that are actual well-playing 1on1 maps that could have been included, rather than this map, which, as far as I can gather, is only called 1on1 because it's small. A true 1on1 map isn't about small size. It's about the layout, item placement, and powerup control. It's about being able to predict your opponent's movements and cut him off, all while giving the other guy a chance to cut you off. It's about sounds, whether triggered or from items, that give away your oppenent's position, and strategy on how to get the drop on him without him getting the drop on you. So when you call your map 1on1, I, and others, automatically assume it's going to be like that. The low score doesn't come from the visuals, because they are, in fact, quite good. The low score stems from the only real playability being "grab the flak or rockets and spam one of three straight hallways until you win." Maybe the score would have been a bit higher had this not been classified as 1on1, since there's generally a little less thought and prediction in regular DM games, but I can't see it garnering above a 5.

Now, I'm willing to go back and edit out all the questionable stuff I said in trying to point out that this is technically not a good 1on1 map and trying to get MsM to use his skill for some new maps, if that's what people want. I can even add a bit about how the meshes are placed and texturing if need be, since I did purposefully decide not to go into detail about it because I felt it really had no bearing. Otherwise, we can just leave it as it is, solidifying my "jackassedness" in history for all to see in the future, and chalk this up as a bad review. In a perfect world, there would be no hard feelings and things would continue as normally, so I'm just gonna hope that I haven't burned any bridges here and there aren't any lasting hard feelings. :hmm:

If anyone needs to tell me off or something even after this explanation, PM me, or email turns2ashes@beyondunreal.com.


1st off i'd like to say apology accept.

What upset me was not the score, or the last part of the review but it was the opening paragraph, as moxnix said you've flamed me more than reviewed the map, and also indicated that i've copied some things, i would like to say even though my re-makes are re-makes, i do totally rebuild them from scratch. Maybe oblivion wasn't a good choice, but i found it made good 1on1 play regardless whether you say its not a acutal 1on1 map, having all those features in a 1on1 map is mighty fine, but 1on1 maps don't need things like that to make them 1on1. As for editing the review, if you'd just remove that rambling at the start that would be appeciated.
If you want T2A my msn is dudelovehavemercy@hotmail.com, perhaps we could have a chat on there and you could get to know me a bit better.

allowed this review to go through because I agree with the points T2A raised. A bit harsh? Maybe, but everyone's allowed the odd harsh review, and his points were valid.

Here's what I think. The suggestion that Oblivion be used as a "1on1" map is patently ridiculous. As T2A mentions, any dueller worth his salt will avoid this map because it simply offers close to nil game play. The original was never anything but a training level before things got serious. Even in "the day", the level was never used for any kind of competetive match. The level had a purpose which it served, but it was a disposable level. To remake something which had already been disposed of was a very poor choice on Mark's part. However, this decision didn't come as a surprise to me. Mark's judgement on his remakes has been in decline for some time. I felt he peaked around the time of his remake of DOM-Cinder, in my review of which I gave due credit. After that the remake levels became more and more like a production line, with less and less creativity and flair. Each successive level also seemed more and more rushed, as if Mark had set himself some kind of deadline which could not be missed at the expense of all else. I noted in my review of his conversion of Malevolence that it seemed rushed, and Oblivion seems even more a victim of this. This conversion is insipid, uninspired and debasing for both the original level and Mark. This level so completely detracts from this author's reputation that something was clearly amiss during its construction. In his text file for DOM-Cinder Mark stated that it would be the last remake he would be doing, and that clearly became untrue very quickly. I think his pursuit of remaking levels has resulted in a stagnating of the quality of his works, perhaps even in some respects a regression. Perhaps that's the reason I allowed the review to go through in the first place. As Skaarj says, it should serve as a form of alarm.

I also found it interesting to have T2A review this level as he, like almost all current reviewers (with the exception of Homeslice and myself), came to the UT community for 2004 and is, if you'll pardon the wording, oblivious to the history of the level or any other for UT. I was the one that pointed out the similarity in function of the original Oblivion and TrainingDay for UT2k3. T2A was originally under the impression that the level was a CTF in UT because Mark had originally made a CTF conversion. Thus, the reviewer carried no level bias into the review, he has stated he has no bias towards remakes, and as such he is a good representation of the new kind of players likely to be taking a look at this level. They have no nostalgia to taint their views on these remakes. They judge them amongst all the other levels available for the new game. I find it interesting that T2A was so scathing on the layout and the map in general. I don't think it was wrong. I don't think it was misguided. He was presented with an, at best, average to poor UT level and judged it accordingly.

Finally, a look at Mark's portfolio. Let me first say that reviewers write reviews in their own time, and as such they are not obligated to go traipsing around the internet to locate other works by the author. I suggest to Mark that he include a listing of his other works in his text files for his levels, as this is currently omitted, so that it is easy for anyone to see a list of his works. Therefore, T2A looked at the reviews the Insite team has done of the author's works. Of the eleven reviewed (including this review), only Nexus qualifies as an original work. As Homelsice indicated in his review of Skystation, Morpheus by any other name is still Morpheus and the author made no attempt to deflect the observation. This rates at pretty much 9% of reviewed works as being original. However, I thought the matter warranted further research so I dropped into MapRaider to see what they had on the author. The author's page said it listed 36 levels, although from the links I could only see 31. That is a lot of levels. Of the 31 listings (two of which were remake map packs), only six were not remakes (again I will not count Skystation). Six out of 31. Better at just over 19% original. This still represents a less than 1 out of 5 works as original. To be brutally frank, the screenshots of DM-HadleysHope, CTF-HadleysHope, DM-Corridor, DM-Factory][ and DM-DMP-1on1-Alpha don't invite their downloading. However, screenshots are not the be-all and end-all, but they can be an indicator. Last I heard, CTF-Tomb of Rameses was unfinished. You submitted a review request for that one, Mark, but then asked us to remove it as it was unfinished. We haven't heard since. It had some potential but there were very apparent layout issues. Mark, if you really want some recognition on Insite for your original works you should be submitting them for review. I enjoyed Nexus, from what I can remember. I know you are a competent level designer with a lot of promise, but T2A's remark about you putting your effort into original work, especially from now on, is something I am in complete agreeance with.

I don't think the review needs to be reworded because it encapsulates the reaction of a fresh view of a tired old level. It is honest, albeit brutally so, but that is why it should remain unchanged. It will hopefully also stand as a crossroads. An opportunity for the author to decide what path he will chose moving into the future. I do not doubt the author's ability, and neither does T2A. The question is, what tasks will that ability be bent to? I know how I hope the author will reply; with levels for us to review.

I will have to say the review was harsh in the opening paragraph. As for my other maps i'm not going to submit every single one to insite, as you cna see from my eariler works lol. As for DOM-Cinder, i thought the review on that was too high in any case, but hey your the reviewer. As for a fair few remakes your'll see there different versions, after learning more skils i've given them all justice, granded and i admit i do too many remakes i mean no offense to anyone when i say this but the remakes are purely for myself, you see theres no such thing as a wake up alarm whether i choose to these remakes or not is my choice, as i said there purely for myself if people like them they like them, if they don't they don't.

As for new original maps i'm working on loads, Homeslice has tested a few of latest ones. DOM-DMP-1on1-Alpha is a cracking 1on1 dom map, great fun and i will be submitting that for review i've had a fair few people who said they were surprised how fun it was to play. As for Tomb of Rameses i haven't done anything with it, i got so fed up with it i didn't even bother uploading the final. As for nexus i'm making a total new version, with a different layout and style which will be up on for review shortly.

I'm glad everything has been cleared up, if my comments i posted upset anyone then i'm sorry. There will be original maps coming so Insite and also maybe a 2nd re-make pack on its way, but my original stuff is been done 1st i've also done work for The 1on1 CTF International Map Pack (CTF-1on1-Arabgoth), Beyondunreal Map Pack (DM-BuF-Shanghai & CTF-BuF-1on1-Crossways) and i'm doing a map for The Chaos mod as well, so plenty of original stuff in the pipeline hitting the insite shelves soon, in fact i'ii submit arabgoth as soon as i get home.

MsM

T2A`
1st Nov 2004, 04:23 PM
Okay, I edited the review. Took out all the stupid stuff and added in a few points I'd left out of the first one. I kept in the first paragraph because I like that flossing thing. ;) I even raised the score to a 5 because MsM was right in that just because it's not "Formula X" for 1on1, that doesn't mean it can't be 1on1. I should probably only judge 1on1 maps using that formula if the author was purposefully trying to pull it off. Sorry again for my dumb crap.

Yournan
2nd Nov 2004, 03:28 PM
much better review, nice one

SkaarjMaster
2nd Nov 2004, 04:05 PM
Oh my! T2A, you caved! I have lost all respect.;)