Getting our community made maps into Matchmaking

If you’ve been reading Bungie’s weekly updates, you’ll know that the handling of the matchmaking playlists is being transfered to 343 in July. This means that no amount of whining or suggesting on bungie.net will make any difference to the matchmaking experience in Halo: Reach.

In halo 3, Bungie set up “Atlas”, a group created by playlist overlord Shishka which allowed players to submit their maps (with very strict criteria) for consideration to be implemented into matchmaking. Sometimes it was permanent and other times it was a special playlist e.g. Maption Sack. (Of which I managed to get 2 maps in)

In Reach, Bungie were a lot more discrete about it. Maps were/are selected from various forge groups and submitted to the Community Cartographers for final approval.

What Now?
From July, it’s down to 343i to decide what makes the cut or if there is any support for community maps at all. How is this going to happen? There are some really great forgers out there who put tons of effort in to make quality maps. It would be a great shame if those efforts were ignored. At the same time we need a more organised system than having everybody post their maps into the forge forum and hope they get noticed.
For me, getting maps into matchmaking is the ultimate goal. While forging is fun and custom games are great there is no better reward then having hundreds of thousands of people play on your map every day.

PLEASE can we have a good system in place for this?

I agree, there should be a way for the community to submit their hard work to matchmaking, though the people who select maps should be the MM team, not community members, as they can be biased towards their friends etc* This is necessary to keep Reach’s Matchmaking hoppers varied and fun, as eventually players will get bored of the same maps over and over again.

Also, make the Submissions process easy, maybe with a template for users to fill out with their map’s details and such, but make the acceptance and vetting process hard so that only the best maps get through.

*Not that members of the 343i Matchmaking team cannot be biased, it’s just less likely.

I see what your saying towards biased things that could go on, but hey, it’s life. All the maps added to MM (in main playlists) have all been great quality, meaning that the people being “biased” are picking good quality maps, then what’s the problem?

The Cartographers have one goal, get maps. Bungie doesn’t care whose, how, or what, just get maps! Some are very cool about it and start groups in the goal of finding those good maps, while few (I can think of 1 or 2 people) submit their own or only their friends. Morally, it’s wrong yes, but their rain has to end when the maps gets rejected. Out of all the maps submitted, very few get accepted.

The other thing id many people don’t realize how hard it is to create a good quality map that checks out in all areas. The good thing about the cartographer system is that it attracts the more veteran and experience forgers like myself. The vast majority of forgers in Reach don’t know what their doing and slap things down and call it a map. It doesn’t work like that. Forge is so much more then you guys realize. It takes a unique perspective to create the things we see in matchmaking.

If there is just flat out submissions, Bungie would have wasted their time looking though tens of thousands of submissions, that about 90% are not even close to good quality maps. That is why Atlas didn’t work and not as much community maps were added to MM. Keeping the Cartographer system made the really forge oriented people like myself go out there and creeate the quality maps they looked for and submitted out maps because we know what we are doing as forgers and be taken seriously.

I understand what you’re saying, but like you said there are a few that only submit their friends and/or their own maps, that’s what I meant by bias. I can think of a Cartographer or two I may have said something they disagreed with, and I’m sure that there are people they don’t like out there, and I don’t particularly want that to affect mine or anyone elses’ chances of getting a map into MM, purely because of a petty dispute.

I like the idea of CC, but some of them are very arrogant.

What you’re saying about it being hard to create a high quality map, I understand completely. I’m still working on something I started before Christmas. Not because I’m slow, but because I want to get it perfect so I can maximise the chances of it getting into MM.

Also, there’s a thread in Forge Cafe for the community to submit their maps, and currently the thread is being clogged by one or two people’s maps. These maps aren’t bad, it’s just that because there’s so many of them, other people’s maps may go unnoticed. What I’m saying is if you have a few people that submit all the mediocre maps they make, then the single submission that someone has spent a long time working on may not be seen. It would be nice if there was a cap on the number of maps you could submit, a) To make the CCs’ job easier, and b) To encourage people to spend more time on their maps.

And I am an experienced forger, it’s all I really do on Reach now. I just don’t put my maps on the internet because I’m never satisfied with them. I get what you’re saying about Bungie wasting their time if it was just free submissions though. Maybe the CCs could collaborate with the 343i Matchmaking Team and then the 343i team get the final say?

I think I’ve seen you in Forge Cafe JP, I go by a different name over there, Orphius_Rex.

Biasism (if it’s a word) is something your going to find everywhere in live, not just in video forums. Connection and friendships are something you need to start early to help you gain success in life. A perfect example in my life is I recently got hired for a job because my father was friends with the manager of the company. I was just ask qualified as the others but I had the competitive edge with connections. The Cartographer system makes you go outside your comfort zone to meet new people and gain new connections to help you get your maps sumbitted for MM consideration. You need to get yourself out there. It happens in real life, and it definitely works here.

Well bias is exactly what should be avoided. Currently we have a system where a small group of people create maps, test them together and comment on the maps and help each other improve them until the group as a whole decides it’s good enough to submit to CC.
This means that a small number of forgers get every single map they made looked at in intense detail and will eventually get at least a few of their maps into matchmaking. The system creates a hierarchy where forgers earn renown, convincing themselves and others that they are the best.
So after a while, someone who isn’t well known within the group might make a stunnigly brilliant map but it will go unnoticed and untested because nobody is interested.

Atlas did work, and forge isn’t as complicated as you make it sound. If a map looks nice and plays well it should be considered.

Either way, arguing about the current system makes no difference because community cartographers isn’t going to continue to influence matchmaking after June 17th.
So from both sides of the arguement we still need a system in place from 343.

I wouldn’t be too sure that the Cartographers are being booted. Bs Angel is well aware of them and what they do, it is a matter of right now deciding whether they will continue they work from there on B.net, some sort of way here on Waypoint, or maybe even not at all.

And trust me, looks aren’t everything to a map. There is so much more.

Tenstone never said that looks were everything, he said a “stunningly brilliant map” not a stunning map. As in the map’s a brilliant map to play on etc etc. Look at Godly_Perfection, him and his crew of Forgers are very arrogant people, and have good connections with CC. GP now has two maps in matchmaking. Yes, connections should matter to some extent, but not to the exclusion of everyone who isn’t best buds with the CCs.

On topic, what will 343i actually do in the way of MM submissions?

People like Godly are ones with great experience and alot of talent. Just because they have connections, doesn’t mean everthing they make will get on. Cartographers take their job too seriously to play that game.

Yes, but what I’m saying is that connections shouldn’t matter, and that it should be fair for the entire community. You may say that this system is unbiased, but it’s not, if you’re friends with a CC, chances are, he’ll look at your map first, and playtest it more.

We don’t want bias.

I have no problem with the CCs as people, or as a system, it’s just the bias that such a system can create.

I guess we will have to wait for 343i to decide what they plan to do.

It’s not outside the realm of possibility Bungie has been holding back a portfolio of quality maps earmarked by 343i for MM after they take over. It sure would save them a lot of effort during their take over period.

I certainly support a combined 343i/Community Cartographer effort but I truly wish 343i had the resources to handle it all themselves but I doubt that is likely.

I definitely support a bias free map selection process.

I definitely support limiting the number of maps an author submits within a period of time as well as the number allowed into MM by a single author.

This is another reason Custom Game Browsing is needed in Halo 4. People can set up games with their forged maps for anybody to join. The good quality maps maps will spread amongst the players and spread to other peoples’ custom games. With Custom Game Browsing, they’ll naturally become as popular as the mainstream maps.

> This is another reason Custom Game Browsing is needed in Halo 4. People can set up games with their forged maps for anybody to join. The good quality maps maps will spread amongst the players and spread to other peoples’ custom games. With Custom Game Browsing, they’ll naturally become as popular as the mainstream maps.

A custom game browser wouldn’t really fair too well b/c then there is no reason to ever play matchmaking. Halo 2 Vista is a great example of how it destroys a game population(despite it being Vista and having many install issues on W7).

If the game would auto download a map before joining and store it on the cache like on Steam. It would be ideal but I don’t think the 360 is capable of that.

The cartographers is a good idea and implemented better than Atlas but their is too much bias, not even towards certain people but a cartographer would forward a map simply b/c he likes it. I believe that exceptional maps should be forwarded despite personal preference otherwise the entire system doesn’t function.