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60,000 passwords have been reset on July 8, 2019. If you cannot login, read this.

Lord of the Pit

Submitted by Kerael
This bundle is marked as approved. It works and satisfies the submission rules.
...Out in the boundless abyss, yet a deeper maw yearns wide. Fierce warlords are pitted against one another in a blood-stained arena only to please their masters...

Map Specifications

Players 2
Size
Tileset
96x96 (84x84)
Black Citadel (modified)
Resources 2x 12.500 gold (default)
2x 10.000 gold (outer)
15.000 gold (center)
2x 22.500 lumber
Neutral Buildings 2x Tavern
2x Goblin Merchant
2x Goblin Laboratory
2x Mercenary Camp
Neutral Creeps 2x5 Easy
2x7 Normal
1 Hard

Features

1. High-ground bases, compromised by the siegebreaker-ramps.
1.1 Two side-entrances, initially covered in trees, can be opened/bypassed using a nearby Goblin Laboratory.​
2. Destructible rocks, blocking shorter paths to the enemy side.
2.1 Creeps guarding the long path have a Mana Burn ability, however they do sleep at night and drop a Replenishment Potion.
2.2 Creeps guarding the short path also have a Mana Burn ability, but drop a pair of Sentry Wards for late-game control over the middle grounds.
2.3 Rock Chunks, blocking a small entrance through the wall, have 60% hp to enable early harass opportunities. Nearby easy camp drops a Level 2 Charged item (no Lightning Shield)
2.4 Oasis creep camps drop a guaranteed Large Mana Potion, but are prone to creepjacks.​
3. Contested low-ground expansion, holding the most gold amount.
4. Greater Voidwalker camp, suited for Tavern Openings, has 0 (~100 by the time) starting mana. One of the Deceivers drops a Rune of Dispel Magic to negate Curse and Frost Armor.
5. Trees, scattered near Taverns and Shops only have 40% hp.​

Overview and Details
Item Details

Permanent 2x2 Random Level 1
2x2 Random Level 2
2x1 Random Level 3
2x1 Random Level 4
1 Random Level 5
Charged 2x1 Random Level 2
2x1 Random Level 3
2x1 Replenishment Potion (shops)
2x1 Large Mana Potion (oasis)
2x1 Sentry Wards (middle paths)
Power Up 2x2 + 2x1 Random Level 1
2x1 + 2x3 + 2 Random Level 2
2x1 Rune of Dispel Magic (tavern)
1 Rune of Lesser Healing (125)
1 Rune of Mana (125)

Creep Details

Easy 1. Levels: 6, Drops: none
2. Levels: 6, Drops: L. 2 Power Up
3. Levels: 7, Drops: L. 1 Permanent, L. 1 Power Up
4. Levels: 8, Drops: L. 1 Permanent, L. 1 Power Up
5. Levels: 9, Abilities: Searing Arrows
Guarding: Harass Entrance, Drops: L. 2 Charged​
Normal 1. Levels: 15, Abilities: Immolation, Searing Arrows
Guarding: Goblin Laboratory, Drops: L. 2 Permanent
2. Levels: 15, Abilities: Chain Lightning, Forst Armor, Curse
Drops: L. 2 Permanent, Rune of Dispel Magic
3. Levels: 15, Abilities: Howl of Terror, Cleaving Attack, Vampiric Aura
Guarding: Mercenary Camp, Drops: L. 3 Permanent
4. Levels: 15, Abilities: Firebolt, Parasite, Cold Arrows
Guarding: Expansion, Drops: L. 3 Charged, L. 2 Power Up
5. Levels: 16, Abilities: Mana Burn, Firebolt, Immolation
Guarding: Goblin Merchant, Drops: Replenishment Potion, L. 2 Power Up
6. Levels: 17, Abilities: Ensnare, Slow, Healing Wave, Brilliance Aura, Immolation
Drops: Large Mana Potion, L. 2 Power Up
7. Levels: 18, Abilities: Mana Burn, Cleaving Attack
Guarding: Middle Entrance, Drops: L. 3 Permanent, Sentry Wards​
Hard 1. Levels: 28, Abilities: Rain of Fire, War Stomp, Cripple, Dispel/Abolish Magic, Sleep
Guarding: Center Expansion, Drops: L. 4 Permanent, 2x L. 2 Power Up, Rune of Lesser Healing, Rune of Mana​

Preview Images

v1.3 (10/6/19)
- Polished the territory
- Added a few walking/building blockers for terrain-consistency
- Rock Chunks, blocking small entrances, reduced hp from 80% to 60% (150)
- Added scattered trees near Taverns and Shops (40% hp)
- Overlord creep camp: moved Overlord behind the Mercenary Camp, moved Fel Beasts out of the way to expansion
- Eredar Diabolist creep camp: moved forward to the expansion entrance to prevent using ancients/towers to creep it
- Fel Stalker from the Goblin Merchant creep camp now drops a Replenishment Potion instead of Rune of the Watcher
- Fel Stalker from the Infernal Contraption creep camp now drops Sentry Wards
v1.2 (10/6/19)
- Decorated the place quite a bit
- The starting bases are now wider
- Increased total tree count from 800 to 900
- Added new entrances through the walls, initially blocked by Rock Chunks (80% hp)
- Added easy creep camps to guard the new entrances: Burning Archer + 2 Fel Beasts, Levels: 9, drops random Level 2 Charged item (except Wand of Lightning Shield)
- Fel Stalker from the Goblin Merchant creep camp now drops Rune of the Watcher instead of Level 2 Charged item
- Greater Voidwalker creep camp (near Tavern): one of the Deceivers drops a Level 1 Power Up (moved from Greater Voidwalker) instead of Rune of Dispel Magic
- Mercenary Camp and Overlord creep camp: moved out of the way to the expansion
- Infernal Contraption creep camp: moved out of the way, closer to Rock Chunks
- Fixed one easy creep camp not being mirrored properly
v1.1 (10/4/19)
- Adjusted some Power Up drops
- Moved a few trees from the Goblin Laboratory to the Salamander Hatchling creep camp
- Greater Voidwalker creep camp (near Tavern): now has 0 starting mana, drops a Permanent item instead of Charged, Deceivers drop Runes of Dispel Magic, changed formation slightly
- Fel Stalker/Salamander creep camp: now drops a Charged item instead of Permanent, moved closer to the Goblin Merchant
- Overlord creep camp: moved closer to the Mercenary Camp
v1.0 (10/4/19)
Released


Author: Kerael aka MadSkills
Soundtrack: Gustav Holst - Mars :)

P.S.: This Hive Workshop Cup entry is a love-letter to Outland/Black Citadel melee maps. While I understand that this type of maps might be inherently flawed due to demon-creeps dealing chaos damage and refusing to sleep, I've tried my best to offset these nuisances. However, my goal was to create a contrasting and, in a way, brutal battlefield by introducing some landscape-driven mechanics and objectives.

Enjoy.
Previews
Contents

Lord of the Pit (Map)

Reviews
mafe
Hm..... I dont quite know what to make of this map. There are no technical flaws, but numerous deliberate design choices that I'm not convinced that they will work out a highlevel play: -Very long direct paths from main base to main base. Scouting or...
  1. Kerael

    Kerael

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    A small update, fixing a few inconveniences and attempting to give a slight edge to tavern-heroes first.

    EDIT: + A larger update, improving the starting locations layout, adding another path around the Pit and generally polishing the map.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
  2. WolfFarkas

    WolfFarkas

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    I like the green poison points (the felwood tile), how about some poison points here and there.
    I think a bit of green in red is nice.

    and the creep level 28, how about make it a bit less hard, like level 24.
     
  3. Kerael

    Kerael

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    Thanks! I'll see if I can fit some of these at the whereabouts, but the initial idea was to indicate the fel presence of the central pit. The green 'arrow' formations are also seen from the minimap to indicate the entrances.
    But all in all, yes, the map's color-scheme would indeed make use of some more contrast in order to not be as depressing. :)

    Regarding the Boss-camp, its level does seem too strong on paper, but it turned out, Computer (Normal) only needs a Level 2 Bloodmage, about 6-7 footmen and a few riflemen in order to defeat it with little to no losses.
    This camp provides some healing/mana runes to recuperate and sustain creepjacks (which are also hindered by the vision-obstructing walls), so I tend to think that it's alright being the late-game culmination point.
    Albeit nasty on the debuffs, the sheer creep count/values are not that hard. And with a bit of dispels, even less so.

    Thanks again for the feedback! Will work on the contrast some more.
     
  4. Kerael

    Kerael

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    Made a final update before the contest deadline.

    Enjoy.

    EDIT: Grand-final update. :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2019
  5. PKCrafty

    PKCrafty

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    Another unique melee map compared to any blizzard melee maps, a lot prettier too! But let's check out the competitive side.

    1. I recommend removing a single Tome drop and the Rune of Mana drop from the center camp. There's slightly too many good drops here, I think it needs to be tuned just a bit for a competitive map.
    2. Similar to the prior point, the two identical camps that drop Rune of Dispell is really strong, and I recommend removing this drop completely. I know it is used to dispell curse applied by the creeps, but the camp has good drops and the added dispell rune takes away the risk of creeping the camp in the early game. A nice side effect of taking it early is having to deal with curse on clearing the camp and then potentially more camps/fighting your opponent.
    3. The two natural goldmines are pretty hard to clear, especially if someone is wanting to expand in the early game. They're quite punishing with the amount of DPS(Chaos DMG, lot of Piercing DMG )and CC(Frost arrows, Stun). Maybe remove two of the level one voidwalkers in the back? May seem insignificant, but thats two fewer sources of DPS that will make a difference.

    Other than those three points, this map is well-balanced, and definitely 100% original! I personally like the two ramps leading to the base blocked by trees. Over time these will be open from naturally harvesting wood, except for Night Elf for obvious reasons, it makes the player be conscious of this, and layout their base accordingly.

    Good luck with your map in the Hive Cup!
     
  6. Kerael

    Kerael

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    Big thanks for the kind words! Appreciate it!

    As for the points you've brought up, I also feel that they are somewhat problematic.
    I'll try to explain the reasons behind these to correctly determine the direction of the future fixes.

    1. For the middle hard camp, I wanted it to be symmetrical first. So that engaging from both entrances would 'flow' similar, while retaining the pentagon-formation of the camp. Getting a Rune of Mana first would quicken the creeping time, while Rune of Lesser Healing would ensure minimal losses. But regarding the Tome drops, occasional +4 agility coupled with a Hood of Cunning/Claws +12/Janggo would indeed be too strong on certain Orc heroes. This becomes even more so critical, since this camp is not mirrored anywhere on the map. With the walls around the pit blocking vision, all these drops fall in one hands very often. Short-sightedly, I wanted the drops to compensate for the low-ground position of the camp, however it is the Gold Mine that is being traded for it.
    In my view there are two ways about the drops from this camp:
    1.1 Remove the drops from the creeps adjacent to the Doom Guard. So that top-side creeps will drop a Rune of Lesser Healing and a Tome +2. In this case the earlier Rune (if engaged from top entrance) would compensate for the delayed Permanent drop.
    1.2 Change Tomes from +2 to +1. Replace the Rune of Mana with Lesser Healing. This will keep the drops symmetrical, but increase the overall healing. When compared to the Turtle Rock's Ogre Lord (Level 26) camp, the drops would be identical: L.5 Permanent + 2x Tome (+1) [TR: 1x (+2)] + 2x Rune of Healing (+125) [TR: 1x (+250)].
    2. The Greater Voidwalker camps are intended for Tavern Hero Openings and have 300/400 max mana. If this camp is ignored at the start so that they regenerate fully (0 starting mana), they will Curse the whole army (15 units) while being Frost Armored at the same time. This combination would take hours to chew through.
    2.1 If this camp is engaged asap, the Rune of Dispel (dropped/used immediately) negates these buffs/debuffs with only 1-2 Curses being reapplied afterwards.
    2.2 If this camp is engaged mid-game, the 'best' option would be to save the Rune and use it after the camp's finished, since using it immediately would simply result in buffs/debuffs reapplication as the creeps would still have ~half of mana remaining. In this case, the camp would take much longer to finish - at worst, or wouldn't slow the process at all - at best (having own dispel by the time).​
    I'm not sure how would I go about this camp yet. It might be quite strong for the first camp, as is, but the Rune of Dispel is an instrument of promoting Tavern Hero Openings. I think I'll remove a Tome drop from this camp, so it's not overly beneficial to get early.

    3. The difficulty balance of the Expansion camps is a rather complex issue. On one hand there is a wall, hindering early harass. On the other hand, there may be some militia/ghoul losses at this camp, which is indeed punishing. The initial idea was to punish fast-expansion tactics just enough to not make them mandatory on this mid-game oriented map. So you'd have to regenerate/remake for additional time after the greedy debut. Economically, this will pay off for quite a while, since the enemy player is unlikely to cancel the expansion immediately. However I'd like to play this sequence out before making a decision. For now there's only a test result of successful fast-expansion with Crypt Lord, few beetles, skeletons and 2 ghouls (1 ghoul and some summon-losses, medium micro).​

    And yeah, the side-entrances! I like how they turned out. I've got backdoored by KotG today. I know I could defend it better, but I've cramped my base with mindless Orc Burrow locations.

    Thanks again for pointing out these instances! As you can see, it clarified a lot. I will improve them after some contemplating on possible combinations. Luckily I've got plenty of time until making updates would make sense. :)
     
  7. PKCrafty

    PKCrafty

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    I like the "1.2" change you suggested quite a bit. It makes the most sense in a competitive stance.

    Ah, I didn't realize the voidwalker camps had zero starting mana! That completely changes my outlook on those specific camps. I think the dispell rune is fine then, but I do agree maybe remove the Tome drop.

    After putting more thought into it, and you point out it's not easy for the opponent to stop an early expansion opening, I think the goldmines are more balanced than I suggested. The map is quite big, and it would take a decent amount of time for the opponent to prevent any form of early expansion. There should be some form of a net loss of early expansion, and since the other player can't really impact it, they should have some unit loss/buildings canceled to balance it out. Instead of getting a free expansion at no cost!

    Hopefully I can get my buddy to play this with me later, I would like to try it out with some real games! Instead of playing with boring AI. :p
     
  8. Kerael

    Kerael

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    The outer expansions only have 10k gold as well. This adjustment was initially intended to force the conflict into the middle of the map eventually. But I guess it also balances out their relatively safe positions (due to the wall and the tree layout around them), however I have a feeling that they are extra vulnerable (as undead/night elf, mostly) against air units, given the unwalkable/unbuildable lava in the corners. Although there is still room for tower defence options.
    I had a Rune of the Watcher dropping from the Shop camps to further reinforce these locations, but decided to remove it for possibly being too critical on a 1v1 map.

    Please let me know how will your matches go.
    Best regards!
     

    Attached Files:

  9. mafe

    mafe

    Map Reviewer

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    Hm..... I dont quite know what to make of this map. There are no technical flaws, but numerous deliberate design choices that I'm not convinced that they will work out a highlevel play:
    -Very long direct paths from main base to main base. Scouting or rushing seem to be very hard.
    -Attacking base on highground with only one (default) entrance can be very hard, as in a 1v1 your primarily will want to win the army vs army fights and sieg units rarely play a part in that. So you may know you have essentially won the game after winning a decisive fight, yet it might take several further minutes before you can really close of the game with a main base attack if the enemy keeps turtling.
    -No AoW-Creeping possible with easily accessible trees to heal.
    -Not a fan of guaranteed drops tbh, but I can see why your might feel otherwise.
    -I also most of the time dont like destructable rocks and on this map I feel that in particular removing the destructable rocks (and the creeps nearby) would greatly improve the playability of the map.
    -Expansions are kinda in a small dead end.

    There are some notable positives however:
    -Good ruse of dispell magic rune.
    -Itemdrops are good (exception see above).
    -Interesting and good creep camps.
    -Certainly no lack of creativity.
    -Good decision to put the lab right next to the ramps blocked by trees. Maybe make it so that a single sapper can already open up the ramps?

    All things considered, I'm reluctantly setting the map to Approved, even though I'd like you to reconsider if some features can be changed (destructable rocks!).
     
  10. Kerael

    Kerael

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    @mafe Hello! I didn't have enough time to reply last week.
    I agree with the overall statement concerning the 'tileset flaws' vs design choices. While I've tried to offset some of the innate features (which camps should sleep at night and which are fine being insomnious, etc.), my main goal for the contest was to push some concepts further. Realistically speaking, I may have overdone some of these as they indeed feel kinda sketch during the game.

    To be honest, the idea for this map started from the concept of Rock Chunks :P as a gateway to destructible terrain. I believe I only saw this being used once in a 2v2 map, protecting the backyard expansions (which is kinda boring, imo). So I decided to give this feature some love.
    And while I wouldn't remove most of the features I've put forth, I am willing to discuss them and make necessary adjustments as to soften some of the rougher edges, gameplay-wise.

    1. This is an overlook on my part. I've tried to amend it before the deadline, but the issue is still present. However, I've seen some players chipping 1 Rock Chunk from the middle-entrance to scout, bypassing the creep camp.
    I think I'll nudge this creep camp to the side while reducing the Rock Chunks HP (big entrance: 250 → 150, small entrance: 150 → 100) to promote this way of scouting. Properly opening the entrance would still require defeating the creep camp.​
    2. Yes. This is the reason for the adjacent 'siegebreaker' ramps: you can put a unit there for the highground vision or contain the defender with a group of ranged units while pushing forward with melee units. As for the siege units themselves, I'd like players to sometimes include 1-2 of those when they are planning to attack the main base. These units aren't used that frequently so it may or may not be an attempt to promote them.​

    And while we're at the main base:
    3. Thanks! I find this interaction quite intriguing myself. :) As for the Sappers, I would agree on that wholeheartedly as they are very expensive units. But on the other hand, there is a Bloodmage and a Keeper, who can destroy the same amount of trees virtually for free. I will iterate on these tree patches some more and if I find a composition, where one Sapper would be able to open it, while BlM and KotG would need 2 spellcasts to do the same, that would be golden.​
    4. There are currently options to creep the Merc Camp (and/or probably the adjacent Voidwalker camp) and the Lab (harder due to Searing Arrows). I will add more trees around the map, especially near the green camps.​
    5. I've read your tutorial, including the Items paragraph, while in the process of making the map, so I understand where you're coming from. I've tried to make these drops as fair as possible, simultaneously trying to soften the impact of universally-hated Mana Burn creeps. Still, I'll try to tone it down a bit in the update.​
    6. Partly answered above, but there's another idea showed up: move the big Rock Chunks to another spot, including creeps. After all, they do not have to block the very middle of the map. Won't promise it in the next update, but I'll play around with the placement.​
    7. There, I don't really see what exactly the problem is. Initially I wanted them to be a safe, but inferior option to the middle expansion. If you mean the terrain layout around it, I think I can shape it in a more non-linear way.
    Oh, I kinda see what you mean, when thinking about Terenas Stand corner expos. Yeah, that's not good.​

    Big thanks for reviewing! I'll try to make an update within the following week.
    Let me know what you think. We should give Rock Chunks a chance, in my opinion. :)