Playtest 197: CrunchMap Supreme

TreiskTreisk Member, Administrator
edited March 17 in Patch Notes

Playtest 197: CrunchMap Supreme

TL;DR - Crunched the 1v1 and 2v2 regions together; added a 3-base expansion; a few other map changes; some minor squad changes

Please note that the map art is a very rough blockout of the new map layout - we've got lots of work to go on it. As always, feedback is encouraged and welcomed <3

General Gameplay

  • The map has been modified drastically.

    • The "2v2" and "1v1" regions have been moved closer together
    • A "Brutal" difficulty expansion has been added with three expansion slots near the center-line of the map.
    • Outer Reward towers no longer have a heal zone
    • An Inner Reward tower has been added between each Outer Reward tower and the main base area of each region.

      • Inner Reward Nodes have a heal zone that restores 20 health per second to friendly units, and do not attack

Neutral Titans

  • Fixed a bug that allowed several melee Titans to attack flying units



  • Eris

    • Fixed a bug that caused Eris to use her normal attack during Sandstorm when attacking flying units


  • Hydros

    • Healing Waters (D) can now be cast while moving, and does not interrupt movement
    • Turn the Tide (R) now heals units in the area for 75 when the effect successfully completes
  • Scuttleguard

    • Collision size reduced by 20%


How was your experience with the new map structure? Did you have better interaction between the 1v1 and 2v2 regions?
How was your experience with the intensity of battles?
How was your experience with the endings of games?


  • bycebyce Member
    edited March 17

    I played Hydros, Ryme, and then Eris. I was bottom lane all 3 games.

    Hydros is just slightly better all-around, of course. I like the Healing Waters instant cast, it makes retreating a little bit easier, which is something Hydros really struggles with. I didn't actually notice much difference with the scuttlebros but it's been a while since I played Hydros. I didn't really get to use the buffed ult either, but I'm sure it's sick. It still sucks to have to ask a teammate to run across the map to kill the flying camps for me when I'm solo. I almost always get bottom lane for some reason, so I just went ahead and tried the new Hydros down there anyway. It would be cool if you could swap bases with your teammates at the beginning of the game.

    I really enjoyed playing Eris. I think I'll have to play her more. It was fun lining her ult up on some dude's concave when he's not paying attention. It does insane damage.

    I still love Ryme.

    How was your experience with the new map structure? Did you have better interaction between the 1v1 and 2v2 regions?

    I like this new layout a lot more than the old one. It just flows better and is easier to navigate and understand. I actually didn't feel like the distance between myself and the other 2 players was less, but the route through the brutal camp makes it feel a lot faster going across the map to them.

    How was your experience with the intensity of battles?

    The expansion areas felt a lot less giant-maze-like, so it was just all around more enjoyable to attack and defend. You can more clearly see where you're going without having to scroll around to make sure you're not going to end up going the wrong way.

    How was your experience with the endings of games?

    It still feels like Juggernauts.

  • CycleCycle Member, Moderator
    • bot ally came top more often on small map. not sure if coincidence.
    • playing in top, didn't really notice the size of the map since I stayed top, so no further comment other than seeing my bot teammate more often
    • bug: sapling range upgrade doesn't seem to be functioning? two replays: G77511b3942a9492686ba14b0f00b432b Gff486e0f04aa4ad091246a8ba109cc1c
    • battles seemed to be the same intensity as before (felt even more intense because of lack of sapling range)
    • games ended mostly by the way they used to imo -- a team will get an advantage and follow through, or the other team will make a comeback after defending a deathpush. personally I find this really exciting
    • I do not recommend Needlefern rushes in the mirror :D
  • AneesAnees Member

    How was your experience with the new map structure? Did you have better interaction between the 1v1 and 2v2 regions?

    There was definitely some more interaction than the old map. The central base is a nice way to encourage some 3v3 battles.

    How was your experience with the intensity of battles?

    I think the intensity is in a good place in the mid game, but once you get to T3 and have charms and merc abilities and your ultimate it feels like you're just trying to spam everything out as fast as possible, which is certainly intense but not really interesting.

    How was your experience with the endings of games?

    Every game just ended up being a juggernaut base race which is unbelievably frustrating. Basically all that's important is getting bases and holding them - none of the finer details matter and it discourages me from playing any more since there's no point in trying to improve and outplay my opponents.

  • Value Menu

    Middle Expansion
    (1.1) - I like this map, the first take feel of it was definitely that gameplay felt closer together, all around. Movement between top and bottom seemed much more viable, in part because of the relative "safety" of capturing the middle brutal and towering the Taco Bell© out of it. Even before though, having the multiple transverse middle routes in this form felt better than the bigger map, with the distinct longitudinal middle lane. That one tended to burrito engagements whereas this adds more weight to winning your side, given engagements will organically choose where to happen based on lead (even in the case of no clear lead) in the late game. I like this.

    (1.2) - However, Crunchwrapping® the brutal with towers felt super inexpensive for the benefit the team gets out of it. I don't think I'd go so far as to call it "cheap," but maybe limiting things in some way would make sense? On the other hand, I've always liked more the feel of your hero moving around on a "huge" hotsauce-field, in the way that large scale decisions and carving out territory with buildings and defenses feels more epic, so I'll usually prefer something which increases epicness in terms of scale (real or intimated), here in the case of towers to defend this valuable and comparatively vulnerable expansion.

    (1.3) - To be clear, though, that's not so much a comment about the physical scale implied by the map. A large-scale engagement with siege weapons, unit formations and Taco Bells being built along the way for supply trains, and a small-scale fight between elite units in a restaurant drive-through are actually quite similar when scaled. It's more the actions you take in either case that make it feel incrementally strategic instead of just running at each other and trading punches. On big maps, I like building stuff; and on small maps, I like the vision game.

    Intensity of Hot Sauce

    (2.1) - Hot sauce felt more intense today (only managed one game, though), particularly at the middle brutal expansion, continuing the theme from above. I really liked this expansion, both how it played on the map, and the strategic choice of when to attempt to capture it, and the open space all around. 3v3s seemed to end up very interleaved, which was surprising, but not that strange. It seemed quite often that the movement of the armies, response time, vision, map design and amount of hot sauce on the nachos meant everyone tended to fall in an a/b/a/b/a/b pattern. Again, one game, crappy statistics.

    (2.2) - I liked Eris' even more tonight, though one thing stood out, and that was target priority. I'm not sure yet, particularly not knowing how other options would play, but I kind of feel like I'd prefer if it targeted like a breath weapon, or like LoL's Lucian ult. As it is now, it will tend to switch target priority to some random nearby enemy (that could be the only one on-new-axis) instead of continuing to fire at, say the original four still on-original-axis when the front fifth unit dies. This particularly stood out in the heat of really big, intense hot sauces where I wanted to lay down covering fire-roasted ancho chiles.


    (3.1) - Ending was pretty much like they normally have been, though it felt faster to get there tonight (don't know if it actually was, but y'all have that data). Lots of gems made it more fun to order from the rest of the merc menu.

  • KonTikiKonTiki Member

    I played mid both games last night, and I felt myself using the whole span of the map top to bottom a lot more than I did before, and from the start of the game. When bot bro was in trouble, I felt like I could help. I was still punished if I overcommitted bot and my ally got caught out top, in that I could not help him in time (generally speaking) but I might still be able to get a few of his units out if it came to that. Having vision around the map felt really important for that reason.

  • HazardHazard Member

    The Map Structure was felt by me. I was definitely able to more easily go to top lane (as a bottom player) and the enemy top laners came down to attack me multiple times. I like that it is easier to go from lane to lane.

    I feel like the distance from the middle neutral area to the nexus is too short. The map feels too small for me.

    Ending of the game was a four Jugg surprise push from bottom lane while I was roaming to help top lane. I didn't get to engage until they were already at my outer tower and at the 16ish min mark there wasn't anything I could do. I didn't prepare correctly.
    So my experience was alright. I'll need to playtest more before I get a strong opinion though.

  • Day9Day9 Member, Administrator

    I AM SO HAPPY to hear that the regions feel a bit more connected. I'm super eager to see how things evolve as you get the opportunity to play it more!

  • Day9Day9 Member, Administrator

    Specifically, if you can monitor how your 2v2/1v1 interactions evolve over time. I kinda expect that people will be mashing to 3v3 fight a bit more because it is possible, not necessarily because it's valuable. My concern would be that, over time, it would turn out to be "correct play" for players to stay super divided in 2v2 and 1v1 regions still.

  • bycebyce Member

    I think the corner expos might encourage you to stay split more than anything. They are lucrative and as far apart as possible, and it's a huge commitment to go help control the one on the other side of the map. Maybe it will be a good balance, though. I'm curious to see how it plays out as well.

  • re: corner expos -

    Curious as well. The one game I played so far might point to it not being as impactful. Opponent in bot lane engineered a cannon early, blocking my attempt to take the corner; I fed a ton trying to clear the cannon (Eris vs. Vex), at which point I just abandoned that part of the map, and spent most of the time top side. This didn't seem to impact my resources that much, but I could imagine an opponent capturing that and pushing from the large tower wall they could set up.

  • bycebyce Member

    Check out this replay if you want to see an insane fight over a corner expo: G22b2154f837c4df7b726d766cce26b3e

    Just go to the top expo and speed the replay up to 8x speed lol

  • DeaucalionDeaucalion Member
    edited March 17

    The Map

    The new map felt really good. Previously, the longer travel time between the two areas of action meant that there was a significant "fun barrier" to roaming top or bottom. Distances are shorter and units are faster, but I also think the uninterrupted procession of the gem area allows for more engagements closer to the middle of the map.

    I think the increased ability to assist allies is balanced by the incentives to split up and spend time in the far corners of the map: gems, expansions, and objectives to attack and defend. I found it easy to roam to my teammates for fights near the middle, but felt appropriately risky to have all three of us at one far end of the map.

    When gathering gems, I like to start at the far end of the map and work my way towards the center so that I could be closer to my allies when a skirmish broke out. I didn't feel like it was particularly possible/effective to deny gems to my opponent during gem waves.

    With the map as it is, I would guess that the "roaming middle squad" would emerge as one of the primary player roles / squad archetypes in the team composition meta. I think players will probably end up thinking of the map as having two 1.5v1.5 lanes, and I find myself liking the 1.5v1.5 gameplay a lot better than the stricter divide of the old map.

    Ending the Game

    As everyone else has already stated: Juggernauts. I think the specific problem with juggernauts is that they are so tanky that there effectiveness is greatly multiplied in groups, because it takes so long to destroy each one. The shield mechanic on the nexus also has the effect of encouraging the all-out pushes where groups of juggernauts excel.

    That being said, I found there are some ways to counter them. Ryme's freezing effects and other cc really help. Perhaps building more defensive turrets, ion cannons, and cubes would be effective (the problem is these things seem like they would be just as effective if not more effective against other forms of attack).

  • bycebyce Member

    I agree with @Deaucalion, when there are 3-4 Juggernauts heading towards your nexus you literally have to stop everything you're doing and just attack them or you lose because they have so much HP.

    But, rather than just reduce their HP, what I'd really like to see personally is a way to increase your gold income, or if we're stuck with it being linear then at least an increased gold income, and the return of upgrades! I want squads to have more of an impact on the late game -- to be able to snipe down those Juggernauts if they're alone so people can't just send them to your nexus and see if you can kill them before they win the game. I also miss customizing my squad with upgrades and actually getting to use all 3 tiers of units.

  • @Treisk said:


    How was your experience with the new map structure? Did you have better interaction between the 1v1 and 2v2 regions?

    I only played two games but in general, yes. It's getting more to where I'd like it to be. There were times when I was so focused on the 2v2 scuffles that I was completely caught offguard when an enemy Ryme squad showed up from the bottom lane and jacked up my plans. The fact that it was even a possibility for that to happen is great and means I'll have to start thinking about the map more dynamically.

    I do also like the moving of the healing range to the inner towers - I hadn't even thought about it prior to the removal but yeah, I never felt really at risk with certain squads when playing the gem shuffle with my opponents because if an engagement wasn't going my way, I'd just retreat for a bit into the double-safety of both an attacking tower as well as passive healing.

    I like the 3-person base from a coordination standpoint - it's really cool for there to BOTH be things you do separately and then things you do together. I agree with @CohLysion that tower spam on that expansion feels a little dirty but I want to play with it s'more before really leaning that way.

    How was your experience with the intensity of battles?

    Kind of the same as before, in that it's a lot of fun but ultimately starts to lose meaning about 20 minutes in. It's just about this:

    I won't expound upon this further because others have done a good job above, and I've certainly said my piece last week. :)

    How was your experience with the endings of games?

    As with the previous question, kind of the same as before.

    Misc topics

    With @byce picking Hydros in one of the two games I played, I tried for Vela with going straight to Deadeyes. Now since this was my first time doing that, I was absolutely awful and apologized to my team but by the end I sort of got the gist of properly setting up a bunch of Take Aims in order to clear out high priority targets (and having a straightforward answer to Purifiers felt cool). I liked the dynamic and how risky it was when I was caught out of position (man I just MELTED away) and it's just really cool to be able to dabble in something that plays out so differently from what I'm used to playing on Hydros or Ryme.

    When I played with Hydros, the Scuttles felt a little better - still had a few "duh" moments but I could possibly attribute that to user error. It was every so slightly more difficult to body block with the Scuttlebros as a result but I think it's a tradeoff I'm willing to take. Combined with the across-the-board speed upgrade I think I can make engagements work most of the time - I don't feel cheated, basically. And I still like how tanky I feel for my high DPS ally when we're on Titans. It feels even better with Motivators, barring the "oh god I spent resources on something not-Juggs" feeling. :D

  • HazardHazard Member

    Sorry just wanted to make sure you got it.
    Fair warning THEN Take aim. Marked targets take more damage. :):)

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