Designer Dissection: Dockyard

RazielWarmonicRazielWarmonic Posts: 922
edited January 2016 in Map Discussion
In this Designer Dissection, Level Designer Draska leads us through the design decisions behind Dirty Bomb's next Objective map. Check out the Prototype Showcase post for the full rundown of Dockyard's objectives, and try it out for yourself in the Server Browser and in Private Matches until the 2nd of January.
dockyardtopdownhighres.jpg

Get to the Airship
Dockyard is designed to depart from the linear, sometimes "meat-grindy" gameplay inherent to escort maps by focusing action around key areas, such as pivotal strategic points and secondary objectives rather than the EV itself. In other words, the goal is to disperse combat that naturally pinpoints on the critical progression element leading to "spam". The strategic points are places in the map that dominate certain areas and offer good cover, height advantage, clear lines of sight and/or access to MG nests, which grant the controlling team an upper hand. Secondary objectives control the flow by opening/closing additional routes and completing them is also essential to the team's success.

Choice
Jackal and CDA are now presented with several tactical choices and each choice carries certain consequences. Pursuing multiple key areas at a time leads to team dispersion but also results in a “cleaner”, duel-like combat and doesn’t leave any key area uncontested. A “strength in numbers” approach on the other hand, gives the best chance of success but only when pursuing one goal at a time and is more susceptible to fire support and grenades. Team structure plays a crucial role, as some Mercs are better suited to carry out certain tasks.
This kind of gameplay requires a certain level of coordination and teamwork but also adds depth, contributing to replay value and longevity of the map.

Pacing
Such a solution also leads to a more desirable pace: Once Jackal gain control of a strategic point the EV is able to progress, until it meets resistance from the next control point.

Destroy the Black Box
The final objective tries to achieve balance between a variety of choices and ease of navigation, while remaining focused and fast paced.
Choice and Navigation
Trenches funnel players towards the Primary Objective while raised areas give access to additional routes via secondary objectives. The CDA defenders can restrict the flow of the map by establishing a forward defense and not allowing Jackal to complete Secondary Objectives. The crashed Airship acts as a landmark for the entire map and aids navigation. Its burning pieces scattered around the final objective area will act as a breadcrumb trail.
Fast Pace
Fast pace is achieved by shorter travel times and a reduced gameplay area. Trenches favour sudden encounters and short range combat, while raised areas allow for scouting and long range firefights.

Have you played Dockyard? Where does it succeed and how could it be improved? Let us know in the comments below!
Post edited by RazielWarmonic on
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Comments

  • CCP115CCP115 Posts: 1,426
    Wow, this is a great post, really informative and it's cool to see the though process that goes behind these maps.

    It would be even cooler if they were a youtube video series...
  • joshstylegamingjoshstylegaming Posts: 91
    edited January 2016
    The map is WAY too CDA Sided. I haven't been in a single match yet where the EV is delivered. The Jackals have no cover, flanking positions are too long, and it's too hard to get people of the MGs. Not to mention the fact that the map is MASSIVE which detracts from the experience as more time is spent running to the objective than actually playing for it. There needs to be a major rework of the maps, and soon!
  • Have played one match if this on defending team. The long corridor thing in the middle of the map is very good for snipers but cover needs to be placed for the opposing team as they have no cover. Although I haven't played on the attacking team, they were spamming chat with "so unbalanced" "we can't attack with no cover".
    I also noticed that the defending team have to many turrets making it hard for attackers to push, maybe add turrets for attackers. But other than that it looks as if it could be a promising map.
  • kAndyREWkAndyREW Posts: 334
    edited January 2016
    The map is WAY too CDA Sided. I haven't been in a single match yet where the EV is delivered. The Jackals have no cover, flanking positions are too long, and it's too hard to get people of the MGs. Not to mention the fact that the map is MASSIVE which detracts from the experience as more time is spent running to the objective than actually playing for it. There needs to be a major rework of the maps, and soon!

    Disagree here, just spent an hour playing only on dockyard...The middle section could use a tiny bit of cover, but is okay... you can't think of it as a straight push with this map imo... you gotta take the side routes and ninja people from the flanks.. the flank routes are fine in length, I think, as it's not long before you come across a key/tactical point (MG, a bridge, etc) ...i've played mostly on attacking and every time we have been able to get it to the end. The last objective is pretty tricky but overall the map seems pretty well balanced. just my opinion though :)

    TLDR: Investing the entire team, Pushing all down the middle, frontal assault is suicide. Take the flanking routes, clear them from their nests so your teammates can push.
  • kAndyREW wrote: »
    The map is WAY too CDA Sided. I haven't been in a single match yet where the EV is delivered. The Jackals have no cover, flanking positions are too long, and it's too hard to get people of the MGs. Not to mention the fact that the map is MASSIVE which detracts from the experience as more time is spent running to the objective than actually playing for it. There needs to be a major rework of the maps, and soon!

    Disagree here, just spent an hour playing only on dockyard...The middle section could use a tiny bit of cover, but is okay... you can't think of it as a straight push with this map imo... you gotta take the side routes and ninja people from the flanks.. the flank routes are fine in length, I think, as it's not long before you come across a key/tactical point (MG, a bridge, etc) ...i've played mostly on attacking and every time we have been able to get it to the end. The last objective is pretty tricky but overall the map seems pretty well balanced. just my opinion though :)

    TLDR: Investing the entire team, Pushing all down the middle, frontal assault is suicide. Take the flanking routes, clear them from their nests so your teammates can push.

    Having only played one match. I don't have much insight into the map but the brief glimpse I did get was that the defending team did have a large advantage over the attackers. I also think maybe some more ammo crates need to be placed because I only found one my play.
  • LifeupOmegaLifeupOmega Posts: 1,994
    Okay, after playing properly and not pissing about going out of bounds and abusing the invincible bullet bush, I gotta say I'm letdown by this map. It's way too big, seriously Splash, stop making such big sodding maps. Even in 8v8, which you've forced on us for some reason, the map is just too large. The EV route is too open. You got it perfect with Chapel and Bridge in terms of the route width and length, so why is this map so damn long and large. Scale it down by like 25-50%, and it'd be much more suited towards the 5v5 format this game is designed for, and not the 8v8 mess we call public.

    Defenders have a heavy bias for the entirety of the map too. From the very start you have the option to create intense crossfires that are a nightmare to break, especially with the height advantages given in this map. And the attackers have few viable routes that won't be locked down by the crossfire.

    The MGs are in ridiculously powerful places, with one looking straight at attacker's spawn, and with the sheer size of the map, again, you become a powerful force for just holding these spots - this doesn't happen on any other map.

    1fd6c0ea71f91ff27d5b7dc0c27c22f2.png

    First point is great fun, but it's also terrible due to the aforementioned crossfires. Defenders can set up in front, above, and all the way down to the MG nest creating a hellish push to get to the EV. Both sides are subjected to incredibly long walks to the fight, honestly I feel like most of my time spent on this map was just getting to the god damn fight.

    The EV route itself is an awful, awful push. What I was hoping for would be an improvement on the previous EV maps but what we have is a complete backtrack. Again, the crossfires are present, the MG nests dominate the route, there are entire areas that just don't need to exist. Snipers also dominate this map, a PDP Redeye can lock down an entire route solo and then some, while risking next to nothing himself due to how large the sightlines are. There is little room for counter play in these situations, and you're funneled into small hallways that slightly alleviate the pressure of wide open areas, only to be pushed back out into these areas and shot down in seconds.

    I honestly tried to avoid the EV route as much as possible, I didn't want to touch it. It was that bad that I just went around alternate routes to get behind people because it's large, open, and has zero maneuverability compared to all the windows, walls and corners defenders can abuse.

    096567129da50418d94f33cb424103da.png

    The mid-point Bridge is also a horrible, horrible area. There is no fast way up, it is completely barren in terms of cover and reliable holding points. The MG is a stupid idea that once again dominates sight lines. The C point door is completely useless in its current state; you can stop people from going through but they can still go over, this defeats the entire purpose as, assuming people know how to jump, they gain the high ground instantly (see previous comment with video).

    161a12d3c462f67c0b466549e04335cc.png

    Once you get to the last stage, this is where my hatred of the map shines. It's a cool idea, but it is executed so god damn horribly it makes first-iteration Dome look like a master piece. It takes over an entire spawn wave to get to it for a start, from a spawn point way too far back for attackers, and then requires you to navigate some trench-like floor plan for no reason at all. The pointless addition of secondary objectives here ruin it even further, while I understand they wanted to make things exciting, there's nothing exciting about a ramp giving you a slightly higher jump so you don't fall into a trench and waste another 10 seconds walking around said trench.

    The area around the actual objective is about the only thing I don't resent, but that's probably because it's a miracle to even get that far right now.

    And that's all I can say right now, mostly because my brain is so numb from the two hours I just played of this.

    TL;DR is: scale the map down, the EV route is WAY TOO BIG IN BOTH LENGTH AND OVERALL SCALE, reposition the MG nests so they aren't dominating the route which has almost no cover, add more cover - especially around the mid point and on the bridge - it is NOT fun pushing against a team who have all the cover while you only have the EV. Finally, rework the entirety of the last point - the trenches are an abomination in design.
    Reminder that it's always okay to vote kick a sniper, no matter how well they're doing.
  • Okay, after playing properly and not pissing about going out of bounds and abusing the invincible bullet bush, I gotta say I'm letdown by this map. It's way too big, seriously Splash, stop making such big sodding maps. Even in 8v8, which you've forced on us for some reason, the map is just too large. The EV route is too open. You got it perfect with Chapel and Bridge in terms of the route width and length, so why is this map so damn long and large. Scale it down by like 25-50%, and it'd be much more suited towards the 5v5 format this game is designed for, and not the 8v8 mess we call public.

    Defenders have a heavy bias for the entirety of the map too. From the very start you have the option to create intense crossfires that are a nightmare to break, especially with the height advantages given in this map. And the attackers have few viable routes that won't be locked down by the crossfire.

    The MGs are in ridiculously powerful places, with one looking straight at attacker's spawn, and with the sheer size of the map, again, you become a powerful force for just holding these spots - this doesn't happen on any other map.

    1fd6c0ea71f91ff27d5b7dc0c27c22f2.png

    First point is great fun, but it's also terrible due to the aforementioned crossfires. Defenders can set up in front, above, and all the way down to the MG nest creating a hellish push to get to the EV. Both sides are subjected to incredibly long walks to the fight, honestly I feel like most of my time spent on this map was just getting to the god damn fight.

    The EV route itself is an awful, awful push. What I was hoping for would be an improvement on the previous EV maps but what we have is a complete backtrack. Again, the crossfires are present, the MG nests dominate the route, there are entire areas that just don't need to exist. Snipers also dominate this map, a PDP Redeye can lock down an entire route solo and then some, while risking next to nothing himself due to how large the sightlines are. There is little room for counter play in these situations, and you're funneled into small hallways that slightly alleviate the pressure of wide open areas, only to be pushed back out into these areas and shot down in seconds.

    I honestly tried to avoid the EV route as much as possible, I didn't want to touch it. It was that bad that I just went around alternate routes to get behind people because it's large, open, and has zero maneuverability compared to all the windows, walls and corners defenders can abuse.

    096567129da50418d94f33cb424103da.png

    The mid-point Bridge is also a horrible, horrible area. There is no fast way up, it is completely barren in terms of cover and reliable holding points. The MG is a stupid idea that once again dominates sight lines. The C point door is completely useless in its current state; you can stop people from going through but they can still go over, this defeats the entire purpose as, assuming people know how to jump, they gain the high ground instantly (see previous comment with video).

    161a12d3c462f67c0b466549e04335cc.png

    Once you get to the last stage, this is where my hatred of the map shines. It's a cool idea, but it is executed so god damn horribly it makes first-iteration Dome look like a master piece. It takes over an entire spawn wave to get to it for a start, from a spawn point way too far back for attackers, and then requires you to navigate some trench-like floor plan for no reason at all. The pointless addition of secondary objectives here ruin it even further, while I understand they wanted to make things exciting, there's nothing exciting about a ramp giving you a slightly higher jump so you don't fall into a trench and waste another 10 seconds walking around said trench.

    The area around the actual objective is about the only thing I don't resent, but that's probably because it's a miracle to even get that far right now.

    And that's all I can say right now, mostly because my brain is so numb from the two hours I just played of this.

    TL;DR is: scale the map down, the EV route is WAY TOO BIG IN BOTH LENGTH AND OVERALL SCALE, reposition the MG nests so they aren't dominating the route which has almost no cover, add more cover - especially around the mid point and on the bridge - it is NOT fun pushing against a team who have all the cover while you only have the EV. Finally, rework the entirety of the last point - the trenches are an abomination in design.

    I disagree with your argument about the long runs to combat as I have never experienced this. But I do agree with you about the turrets as the do dominate long corridors and are impossible to defeat ,there are also to many. The long open areas are another problem because a good sniper ( like myself :p ) can easily dominate, they should keep the long EV push corridor as like a feature of this map but flanking routes around this corridor should be made more close quarters. The attackers do also need some of their own turrets to help them push and cover like crates or bins or something or cars should be put in the large open corridor to provide cover.
  • LifeupOmegaLifeupOmega Posts: 1,994
    It takes an entire spawn wave to get from spawns to certain points, how is that acceptable?

    The whole map is simply too big and clunky.
    Reminder that it's always okay to vote kick a sniper, no matter how well they're doing.
  • OK so some spawn points need to be changed but I've never found that to be to much of an issue. The map is not to big and clunky it's more open than we are used to in dirty bomb but I think it could be good.
  • p4vp4v Posts: 257
    edited January 2016
    I have played a couple of matches and here are my thoughts about obj 1 and obj 2. Why I don't want to discuss obj 3? Because I got there only twice.

    Objective 1:
    I didn't have any problem with repairing EV. It's almost as easy as on Chapel. I think the key to do it smoothly is to have2 engies. One that repairs doors asap (I always did that part) and the other that hides behind EV. The team focuses on guarding the 2nd floor and you are ready to drive out.

    My experience: 10/10 I really like the idea of EV indoors.

    Objective 2:
    The early stage is fine, however, the top right corner should be blocked entirely. There is too much flanking possibilities and that leads to easy wipes of attackers.

    Then we get to a long street. Escorting EV there is the worst part of the map. Its structure is similar to Chapel with 2 routes wherein the right route ends halfway through the street and the left route allows to flank defenders. However the left route doesn't have MG. Instead, there are stupid doors that only block defenders from flanking attackers (why it's the other way around?!?!). As LifeupOmega said, the design is just stupid.

    Defenders never flank from that path anyway. They just snipe and blow up attackers from their half of the street without much effort. It's already biased towards them. On top of that they can just jump over it.

    Remove the doors or remove the stairs but shift the doors as an objective for defenders so it would be their task to repair it in order to hold back attackers from flanking.

    cqXjqVe.png
    Post edited by p4v on
  • Early thoughts my skill range is lower intermediate, I would say, Its a big map even for 8v8's. Defense seems to have the upper hand for stopping that EV push almost never see the end stage unless it is a real stomp, like ~4 min game totally out classed that sort of thing so I don't have much thoughts on that part thus far. It needs signs showing flanking routes side objectives that kind of thing, Gallery the EXE map has them showing how to get to A and B to a small degree and it really helps. I know its a prototype map and textures aren't there, if you could just slap something in for where you think they will go even if they look totally stupid it would help teams flow right and avoid the usual grind in the crossfire that seem to happen all to often.
  • Props to the devs.
    I have thoroughly enjoyed Dockyard, and it may well replace Underground as my favorite map. I love the progressive feeling of the map as the EV moves through it. I also love the variation in verticallity all throughout the map, leading to diverse gameplay. I do wish that it was a little more compact, but over all, I love this new map.
  • LifeupOmegaLifeupOmega Posts: 1,994


    4Head
    Reminder that it's always okay to vote kick a sniper, no matter how well they're doing.
  • 3rsh3rsh Posts: 93
    I like dockyard of its options for different strategies, however I do agree the fact that it lacks any cover in the open. Also the 2nd objective so very poorly designed, the aren't really any advantages to the defenders if they deactivate bother secondary objectives. For example, If the opposing team is stacked their really screwed, same apples vice versa for attacking
  • 3rsh3rsh Posts: 93
    edited February 2016
    Honestly there is just a lot of loose ends throughout part of the map.
    there isn't really anything that will keep both sides on their toes
  • watsyurdealwatsyurdeal Posts: 4,739
    So far the action is good, a lot of long range fights however with very little cover. There needs to be some more added at some point so it's not a Rifle dominant map.
    So hey, I have a small guide here you may like, go ahead, read it, you know you want to.


    ダーティーボムは非常に良いですが、あなたは非常に悪いです
  • ImSplooshImSploosh Posts: 1,143
    I found some exploits with the current blockout map of Dockyard

    @CommissarTyr

    I've tried dozens of times trying to get that 3rd one, but it just doesn't seem possible. There's not enough space for a 2nd jump no matter what I do lol.


    Only wanted to try it because I was trying to get on top of that little ledge in a game and couldn't get it. Didn't realize it was actually possible! O.o
  • This map is great! I've had so many really intense/amazing games on this map. Playing the different mercs that I have on this map it is still equally enjoyable. I love it so far and can't wait to see it completed!
  • kAndyREWkAndyREW Posts: 334
    here's my take on dockyard :) liking the map overall but could use some tweaking with overall scale. Size is okay imo, but some parts seem too "wide"

    Also last stretch for the EV could use some cover for the attackers, maybe some hollow cargo containers..

    Also you may want to consider adding a forward spawn in the left flank so that the attackers can spawn up closer during the 2nd stretch for the EV. Would be very very helpful
  • basically the fault i see with dockyard is that it is very defender sided (at least during the ev escort) the entire map needs to be balanced for both sides. also long ladders are death traps and several ladders are too exposed.
  • It is extremely hard to attack, even if you take advantage of how big it is and push through sides. It is also a very big map, which I find fine with a 8vs8 game but when it comes to a 5vs5 game I have my doubts. Hopefully you improve it.
  • TayskiTayski Posts: 74
    great map, had some amazing games on it so far!
    Also it feels different to the other maps, a breath of fresh air!

    well done
  • It is very defender sided.
  • JJMAJRJJMAJR Posts: 1,082
    No bush should be able to block bullets, even if they block player movement. That's the only problem I have with bushes in all of the maps that have them.
  • edited February 2016


    me and a friend found a pretty epic exploit, dont know if itd already been found but yeah :)
    It can be put a little further back and still shoot people as well, also any deployables can be placed up on that beam.
  • From my experiences, Dockyard feels a lot like chapel only bigger. Like in chapel, there is a specific way Jackal must attack the map in order to be successful. Right now it feels like cover the left flank and get the first turret, while repairing the EV. If this is not done, CDA ends up shooting Jackal like shooting fish in a barrel. After the EV is repaired, Jackal has to push their right flank and capture the second turret while moving the EV and praying the left flank holds or is ignored. After the bridge area, CDA can still flank from both sides. Again fish in barrel. After Jackal claims the right flank, They need to hold it and begin pushing left flank to clear the 3rd turret and make the trench safe for the EV to pass through. If the right flank does not hold, CDA can block Jackal off again at the second turret. If Secondary B gets closed at the same time, there becomes no easy way to push left again until the right flank is reclaimed again. While interesting concept, the gameplay can feel repetitive and grinding. Secondary B bothers me in particular because the placement of the stairs leading up to it feel like they impair Jackal from moving quickly to push left. The trick jump to get inside Secondary B feels overly complex. The overpass leading to it from the second turret doesn't feel to provide Jackal with enough cover to safely fire against CDA. In fact the First two turrets feels like they have too much cover. Cover balance might need to be a focus now that I think about it. From there Jackal can flank CDA but Secondary C seems to have very little point or reliability. CDA can just jump over it. That is an easy change though with even an invisible wall. Once the left is being held Jackal can push right to help cover the EV to the end. It seems though that if Jackal does not do all of this they will fail very similar to chapel. After the EV reaches its destination, Jackal has two Secondary options to help them reach the center and final objective. Secondary E is pretty strait forward. I don't feel Secondary D is New Player friendly. I appreciate the trick jumps for the more experienced player, but I also know Dockyard may one day be the first area someone plays when trying out your game. Long jumps and wall jumps are not explained in the tutorial. There may be a reminder of them in the loading screen but that does not always show. Like Dome, Dockyard feels less New Player Friendly. If you do not know the tricks that, you will fail. That honestly feels unsettling but... meh. I appreciate your attempt Developers. Good luck in improving the map further. Good luck to you publishers as well.
  • SirFrancelotSirFrancelot Posts: 28
    edited February 2016
    Dockyard best features are also its worst in some ways, the abundance of flanking routes. They give refreshing ways to engage the enemy from different angles, however they can also be easily locked down as they can be used both ways.

    One way I can think of to address this would be to make certain flanks one-way for a team so that then the flanks are focused. So there would be flanks which allow the attackers to position themselves behind the defenders and vice versa, with some form of environmental barriers preventing entry from the other direction. In this way, there is a focus on being able to flank in one direction and prevent being flanked from the other route. Hopefully this would lead to less emphasis being placed on using the flanks, making them less congested and actually enabling good flanking manoeuvres to be performed.

    E.g:
    R9f0JlF.jpg

    But overall, its a good map with a lot of promise, looking forward to seeing how it develops in the future :smile:
  • Having played a hell of alot more of this map I have noticed that the corner just before the long corridor is very hard to get round as the defenders have lots of places to emerge from and with only the EV for cover there is nothing you can do but just keep dying and dying until the EV creeps round the corner something needs to be done for example cover or a turret for the attackers. I do like the idea of the EV being inside but the doors need to be something the defenders work for not the attackers maybe but a generator a little away from the door. My other nag is more infinite ammo crates need to be placed just one or two more because as I am playing as Phoenix I am constantly running out of ammo and having to go in search for said crates. My final nag is the turret by the last objective can just shoot through the doorway on the other side of the trench which is very annoying is you are trying to fix the generator. Other than that all is well and good with the map and I am excited to see it textured and fully released. ;)
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