Whiskey's Racetracks Guide

In light of the announcement that Halo racing will be getting some playlist time I, one of the longest standing members of the racing community, thought I would take some time to tell you all what different types of racetracks there are and where to find them.

I am one of the hosts of one of the biggest Halo racing leagues, which has had over 100 tournaments on over 250 tracks over the last year.

This is not a truly altruistic venture. I hope that 343 and the cartographers will see this and consider all types of racetracks for the playlist, instead of just the ones seen on the more popular sites and youtube channels. Hence, I will also be giving my opinion on the competitiveness of each type.

Terrain

Description: Terrain tracks are built using the ground of the larger Halo 4 maps, most usually Ragnarok, Vortex, Longbow, Exile and Complex. They may contain some man-made skytrack elements to act as bridges. Also they may contain shortcuts. They should be completely bordered and fairly wide throughout. The best ones aren’t difficult to complete a lap, but are difficult to set a good lap time. Knowing the tracks and working out the best line will usually greatly improve lap times. In virtue of being built on rough terrain, they can be bumpy and some of the poorly forged ones can be inconsistent. (Video)

Competitiveness: I would argue that along with MotoCross tracks Terrain are the most competitive tracks. As in most things it does depends on the track, and the fact that Terrain tracks are seen as easy to forge does lead to some simple and uncompetitive or overly difficult and inconsistent maps.

Sample Tracks: Great White North, Valholl, Arciform, Lothario, Canine.

Forgers: WhiskeyWarm, NukedlceCream, Bean05, Boyd Da Milkman, CoookkieMonster, gogetarulez, Possante, Orionhardy84, DoM Motionless, Miss StarStrukk, Wolf 8499.

Where to find them: HaloTracks.org.

MotoCross

Description: MotoCross are tracks based on the real life sport of MotoCross, they are mainly consist of jumps in sections. There are two (main) categories: SX and MX. SX are normally entirely man-made, and contain 90 and 180 degree turns with berms (banked turns) and have straight jump sections. MX (sometimes called Nationals) are a mix of terrain and SX and tend to be more free flowing. These tracks can be difficult for new racers and speed is gained by being consistent. Poorly forge tracks can be inconsistent, even well forged ones can become inconsistent in a full lobby. (Video)

Competitiveness: Widely considered as very competitive, but again depends on the tracks. Most of the established forgers continue to make very good tracks. Also, tracks can be very frustrating for people not used to MotoCross.

Sample Tracks: Victoria Field SX, Reaper SX, Vantage SX, Cliff Side MX, Wongatti MX.

Forgers: XreignZ, purpledinosaur0, Goldliner 49ner, King Edward I, PancakeMuffin, i ImpROBable, Romansoldier35, v Ionized, l Ic3mann l, blh728, llehctim4, Casselfied.

Where to find them: ORL Youtube, Halotracks.org, Transforgers Youtube.

Mixed Terrain and Similar

Description: In the ORL (Outlaw Racing League), MT are totally man-made with jumps and other obstacles. I extend this definition to include tracks outside the ORL that contain similar elements, but of a different style, and the MarioKart remakes. (Video)

Competitiveness: This is very dependent on the track, but they tend to be competitive on the whole. Some tracks can be inconsistent and frustrating.

Sample Tracks: Space Arena MT, Wario Stadium MK64, Piped, Hummus, DRL Palace.

Forgers: Turbtastic, Vorck, Bean05 Possante, WastedDuckling9, BxA Real Deal D.

Where to find them: ORL Youtube, Halotracks.

GP

Description: Completely man-made and without jumps, they tend to be flat, but with some banks and hills. They should also be completely bordered, but may have a raised “road”. They are made to have competitive corners and have a distinctive style. They are made to emulate traditional racetracks. You may also see them called Raceway. (Video)

Competitive: Another competitive category, but tends to only be so in a race with honour rules (no deliberate crashing, no cutting). The field can spread out, but if racers are of similar skill level races are good.

Sample Tracks: Sunset Stadium, Nightfall GP, Unknown GP, Everland GP.

Forgers: Tripmine413, romansoldier35, Darkstar o72, Darklynx876, Unrealiztic, Armada223, Harkler.

Where to find them: ORL Youtube, RoadRage Youtube.

Tight

Description: These tracks are normally similar to Terrain tracks in that they use the natural terrain on the standard maps. However, they are normally built on the smaller maps: Haven, Adrift, Abandon. Sometimes they can be built on the tight elements of larger maps. They are narrow and difficult, but can have a good flow and speed. (Video)

Competitiveness: There are only a handful of tracks and most have been used to good effect in competitive racing. However, they can be frustrating and overly difficult for new racers.

Sample Maps: Donglow, HapHazard, Concealed, Refuge.

Forgers: NukedlceCream, Bean05, Miss StarStrukk.

Where to find them: Halotracks.org.

Miscellaneous and Aesthetic

Description: This is a difficult category, the best I can say is that these tracks are normally build with a theme and have no “road” but instead you race around a structure. They can vary wildly in terms of quality and style.

Competitiveness: Most of these tracks tend to be well made, so they can be competitive, some very much so. It does depend a lot on the track, but it’s a good mix of fun and competitive.

Sample tracks: Funky Factory, Radiator Springs, Terra Nova, Racer’s City, Crusty Lopez, Battle on the Blue.

Forgers: Masta Hippie.

Where to find them: Halotracks.org, Ducain’s Youtube, ProForgeRacing Youtube, ForgeHaloRacetracks Youtube.

Collision/City

Description: With the advent of the new Race game type, tracks that cross over each other, popular in Reach, are coming back. They can be of most types, but tend to be of either MT or City style. They can be confusing for new racers and as anyone can make them, can be poorly made.

Competitiveness: Can be competitive, but greatly depends on the track once again. The collisions these track encourage don’t necessarily get in the way competitive racing.

Sample Tracks: Collision Fusion, Leviathan, Charybdis, Seaboard Circuit.

Doublewide and Roller Coasters

Description: These are the maps that have historically got the most publicity. They are man made, skytracks that have smooth flowing turns and generally look great. The main difference is that0 doublewides are wider and rollercoasters are narrow. This causes coasters to be longer and more challenging. I group these two together because there is a lot of overlap in forgers.

Competitiveness: There is some competitiveness in these tracks, but in my opinion doublewides are the least competitive of all race maps, with coasters only slightly better. They look great but race too easy.

Sample Tracks: Rise, Scenic Double, PokeCoaster, Empire Strikes Back, The Milk Man.

Forgers: Noble Forger, Pvt Parts, CoookkieMonster, Boyd Da Milkman, Tripmine413, KSI Milkman, Lord Fluffball, Anopisthograph, TheRedEyedDevil, sG DeTaiL, DjV RaZoR, NukedlceCream, clipstreu, Bowzir, Fredr1ck11, JDOG0604.

Where to find them: LayedBackGaming Youtube, Transforgers Youtube, ForgeHaloRacetracks Youtube, Halotracks.org, RoadRage Youtube.

Stunt

Description: These tracks are normally either doublewides or rollercoasters with stunts such as back flips or barrel rolls thrown in.

Competitiveness: It is very hard to make a completely consistent stunt, hence these tracks are very likely uncompetitive.

Sample Tracks: Rainbow Road, Fluffy Mayhem, Particle Loop, Stunt Jockey.

My Opinion

I have no idea how the race playlist will work. 343 may just use the standard maps with checkpoints place, like the race playlist in Reach. But hopefully they will dip into the huge community and the large bank of maps that exist already.

The Halo 4 Playlist Veto system would promote choosing 3 different category of map and having them be voted on. I would have them be Terrain, MotoCross, Other (which includes GP, Mixed Terrain and the Miscellaneous maps).

A few more things:

[/li]- I, and many within the community, would not put doublewides in the playlist. They look great and are very cool, but there is a reason they aren’t used in competitive leagues.

  • Map consistency is very important, there’s nothing that ruins a race more than flipping out randomly.
  • For a large listing of tracks that are used competitively, go here.

I hope 343 and the waypoint community read this and consider it when building the playlist, the racing community is greatly looking forward to it.

Racing Leagues and Squads

Outlaw Racing League
Dirty Racing League
HT:SX
HT:GP
HT:Terrain
HT:SS

Yes! Whiskey is an amazing forger and racer, and a very prominent member of the racing community and if this guide is honoured, then I’m sure this playlist will be a great success!!

Great Post Whiskey! Hopefully this gives more insight on the racing community of Halo 4!

> I have no idea how the race playlist will work. 343 may just use the standard maps with checkpoints place, like the race playlist in Reach. But hopefully they will dip into the huge community and the large bank of maps that exist already.

Good stuff. If you want to get out in front of this, I suggest you formally submit your maps, and encourage forgers in the racing community to submit their maps, to the powers that be:

Official Community Cartographers Thread

Thank you for posting this whiskey!!!

Awesome job Whiskey! Lets hope a lot of people see this!

Thanks for posting this Whiskey. Hope this spreads the competitive understanding of Halo racing.

> Good stuff. If you want to get out in front of this, I suggest you formally submit your maps, and encourage forgers in the racing community to submit their maps, to the powers that be:

Would they except our map submission though? That thread is just full of normal maps, and our maps wouldn’t fit the submission requirements. If 343 want community made maps for the playlist, they made need to start a separate submission thread.

> > Good stuff. If you want to get out in front of this, I suggest you formally submit your maps, and encourage forgers in the racing community to submit their maps, to the powers that be:
>
> Would they except our map submission though? That thread is just full of normal maps, and our maps wouldn’t fit the submission requirements. If 343 want community made maps for the playlist, they made need to start a separate submission thread.

I can’t speak to that. I will say that, in my experience, threads like this are often either overlooked or ignored.

If no formal mechanism exists to submit and evaluate race maps, or existing criteria doesn’t fit, then the race community(ies) should help 343 develop something more appropriate.

Take an organized and professional approach to matters and inject yourself into the process, like they do with Throwdown and Grifball. I think the best place to start is to tweet:

@bsangel

@BravoMLG

@quinndelhoyo

Ask them what they think and how you can get the wheels in motion.

Lets hope 343 take note. Race in matchmaking could be a seriously popular playlist if your advice is taken Whiskey. It would help create a more diverse matchmaking experience, and may also appeal to players who want to play casually with friends, as well of those who would want to race competitively. Racing on Halo is immensely fun, and most players who have got into the racing community during Halo 4 have stuck around and had a great time. There are many great maps ready to go straight into the playlist, so lets hope this happens.

Great job Whiskey.

Great topic whiskey! Hopefully this topic goes far

I had no Idea halo had such a large racing community! Anyways, this was a good informative read (something you don’t see often).

> I had no Idea halo had such a large racing community! Anyways, this was a good informative read (something you don’t see often).

Oh, it’s definitely a sizable community! Fair amount of history to go along with it, as well.

This is an awesome post, Whiskey. Something that will definitely bring some added attention the this particular way of playing a 1st person shooter. Many, many thanks for creating this extremely informative post, and an even larger thank you to all of the guys and gals that help keep Halo’s racing community alive and well! I look forward to racing with some new faces in the future.

Which leaves me with one more thing to say. Viva la HaloTracks!

> > I had no Idea halo had such a large racing community! Anyways, this was a good informative read (something you don’t see often).
>
> Oh, it’s definitely a sizable community! Fair amount of history to go along with it, as well.
>
> This is an awesome post, Whiskey. Something that will definitely bring some added attention the this particular way of playing a 1st person shooter. Many, many thanks for creating this extremely informative post, and an even larger thank you to all of the guys and gals that help keep Halo’s racing community alive and well! I look forward to racing with some new faces in the future.
>
> Which leaves me with one more thing to say. Viva la HaloTracks!

Yeah, HaloTracks.org has been going for over 5 years, that’s at least a “Fair amount” of history! ;D

And while we’re on the topic of thanking people, I think we all need to give a thank also to Jeff here: he extremely kindly runs, for the benefit of all of us, HaloTracks and is helping to keep a sizeable chunk of the racing community alive every day!

And again: thanks to 343 for putting this playlist in Matchmaking. We’ve been asking since at least Reach and it’s finally here, along with Rocket Race too! ;D

> If no formal mechanism exists to submit and evaluate race maps, or existing criteria doesn’t fit, then the race community(ies) should help 343 develop something more appropriate.
>
> Take an organized and professional approach to matters and inject yourself into the process, like they do with Throwdown and Grifball. I think the best place to start is to tweet:
>
> @bsangel
>
> @BravoMLG
>
> @quinndelhoyo
>
> Ask them what they think and how you can get the wheels in motion.

Thank you, this is great advice. I agree that this thread is not the best way to get maps into the playlist, it’s just an introduction of sorts.

However, the problem with using the existing submission thread is that there are a lot of race maps, by a lot of people, and the level of testing needed is much less. The thread would be flooded with race maps.

Yeah we’d definitely need our own submission thread.
I’d call it the Official Racing Cartographers Thread and have the submission template look like this:

Map Name:
File Share Gamertag:
Canvas Map:
Last Updated:
Tags:

Racetrack Type:
Number of Checkpoints:
Perferred Number of Laps:
Supported Vehicles:
Budget: ####/10000

Screenshots:
Video Flythrough/Overview Link:
Map Description:

Does this map use players trait zones?
If so, please provide the details for each trait zone:

Additional Info (optional):

Additionally, please use the following checklist to make sure your map is ready for review:

-Map is “watertight” - hard and soft kills keep players inside the intended race space
-Any potential geometry holes/unwanted shortcuts are blocked / unreachable
-Spawnpoints are spaced far enough apart to not cause racers to spawn on top of each other and face the direction of the lap
-Checkpoints are placed in logical locations and face in the correct direction
-No spawn points exist outside of the play area
-No objectionable content within the build space
-The map has unique load-in cameras which show the play space
-Players do not get caught up or stuck on any forge pieces, man cannons, etc
-Any trait zones are clearly detailed in text form

Awesome topic, I believe this will hopefully make the Race playlist a permanent one! :slight_smile: