Warcraft Zone Control - 2nd Edition


Bob Kotick - Gamers' corporate spoilsport No. 1
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About less than a year ago, some guy had this idea of turning warcraft 3 into real mass battle. His main inspiration were the intro cinematics which portray those enormous amounts of grunts storming down the hill, just to clash against that army of human swordsmen.
According to his opinion, most units in warcraft 3 profited a lot if their stats were closer to their character: have siege engines move and shoot slower yet more powerful...give footmen less hitpoints so they won't survive the damage of bursting catapult rounds and mortar shells, yet agile enough to destroy a siege machine once they have surpassed the critical distance...have mountain giants even more laggard, more bulky and more toughened-up, so they better portray the image of hard living stone that can barely be destroyed by man's force...
He didn't know much about the warcraft World Editor, he had rarely heard of Jass. He can be thought of as a somewhat crazy guy harbouring weird ideas and high ambitions; so in his drive to realize his ideas he stumbled over this forum and soon received all the good advice needed to make rapid progress.
This guy is me, and after about 9-10 months of planning and conceptual work, learning GUI, roaming the forums, (especially here at theHelpers where I acquired some solid basics), learning the "secrets" of WE and acquiring a solid JASS knowledge, my journey has almost come to an end: My map is I'd say 99% complete and 99% playable in singleplayer and multiplayer, though some issues like improving the AI and finishing the last cinematic are still awaiting completion.
This is a pre-release of a map created from pure scratch, its core now being based on about 3000 lines of custom jass code. I very much hope it will bring you hours of fun and immersion.

Zone Control Evolutions features even higher massed battle than known from footmen wars and previous Zone Control type of maps. Though the masses of footmen are soon to lighten up as the next generation of fierce warriors is to claim the battlefield and prove that only by advancing in research and technology this battle can be won.

The map features:
-O- 4 races - 5+1 types of units a race
-O- 2 heroes with 14 levels each race
-O- 16 to 18 different types of upgrades per race
-O- 6 tiers based on a common tiering system
-O- 2 new jassed spells
-O- jassed mass movement scripts allowing an easy command of your units
-O- implemented player commands such as "-bounty"
-O- highly sophisticated jass implementation for spawn-control, unit count...
-O- basic AI implementation reaching up to tier3
-O- introduction tutorial via player-vote
-O- cinematic sequences

since this is a pre-release, I will have to complete on the following issues before releasing the map, which will probably take a week to finish
- tier6 cinematic
- dynamically acting AI for tier 3-6
- battlenet testing
- final bugfixing

Since I' won't have internet in the week to come, I found it best to already give you a taste.

I'm delighted to receive opinions and criticism, which are a substantial part in helping me to push the final release even further towards one of the best, if not the best Zone Control map ever made for warcraft.

To be enjoyed on a fast machine of yours!

Sounds great, but can you give me another link?
for some reson i can't dl from that site it says:


Download from unknown referer: 

The Map Server checks your referer to confirm you came from our site. This prevents people from directly downloading from us without actually visiting us.

If you clicked a link from the tutorial site, you could be 'hiding' your referer with a proxy connection, firewall software or your browser settings.

You can visit this map with this link.

If you have found this page by mistake, there may have been a problem with the map server.

Do you have another link?
Pros: Awesome
Cons: Needs More Heros, a LOT by the looks of it.
kc102 said:
Pros: Awesome
I pretty much agree, I haven't played a 'zone control' map before so I can't say how you are doing against your competitors.
The only majore problem I can find isn't something you can do something about: Wc3 doesn't handle the movment of a lot of unit at once very well. The movment system is probebly the best you can do to easy the lagging movment that 300+ moving units create.

Im also missing some interesting terrain in the zone area, even a zone control map can have something more interesting than a lot of squares ^^

I lost againts the ai :(
Massing and upgraded footmens beats knights ^^
kc102 said:
Pros: Awesome
Cons: Needs More Heros, a LOT by the looks of it.

G*, thanks.
Sure, most maps are mainly hero-driven. That's what I'd say is the main difference between starcraft and warcraft, and basically what makes warcraft unique as it nicely combines the two gameplay elements.
But then: this is not a hero-arena map, (which nobody would play if it wouldn't feature at least a dozen heroes or so.)
The original and good spells out there to additionally create original heroes are becoming very spare, and I'd say that the potential of true originality with heroes and spells is mostly deploited.
I have often played footy maps which were unbalanced due to its heroes. So my point here was that heroes are definitely needed, but yet carefully balanced and broken down to its essential functions, as at some point you may alter the artwork of heroes and their spells, but what you are doing with the heroes is still sort of the same thing:

a) abilities to damage/kill masses
b) 'defense abilities', should the hero be surrounded
c) abilities to heal
d) supporting auras
e) passive abilities

so that's basically how I conceptually broke the heroes down to then make sure that each race has heroes covering these abilities.

I balanced most spells to heavily damage tier1&2 units, the spell being at level 1, just about kill tier1&2 units, the spell being at level 2, kill researched tier1&2 units the spell being at level 3, and overkill them in masses, the being on level 4.

there are quite a few technical advantages when breaking it down to the minimum:
a) map stays neat and small, due to a minimum of imported data
b) players are already familiar with heroes & their spells (I've got quite some friends I meet at LAN parties, and who have not such a great understanding around the large amount of spells, so this is also bringing it down to not being overwhelmed by too many options)

So these are my ponts. But then again, I'm open to suggestions,
How many heroes should each race have?
Should they be pre-defined, or should you be able to select a heroes out of a total of b heroes selectable?
Which spells do you miss?
which heroes would you suggest?
this map is pretty slick!

Yay, first release! This map deserves 10 million downloads on its first day....

I just played a solo full-house game, and found very few bugs. Here they are:
The tooltip says upkeep at 4 zones when in reality it is at 3. (It correctly says 3 in the tutorial)
After tier cinematics your camera goes to your base. It should be set bact to its pre-cinematic location.
AI fail to notice/react when your base is under threat. They will keep masses of foots at their base while you die.
bounty should be on at default, It really gives you a good sense of what is going on economy-wise!
You should make it obvious (tooltip somewhere) that if you sell a prime zone and rebuid, you will still get the aura =D

This game takes a while. Maybe its because i was vs ai, but it got tedius after a point. Possibly make the game shorter by:
Cost-free revival (the enemy gets +250 anyway!)
Less severe upkeep. Say, 30 gold. You should be able to expand if you want to, at the price of upgrades. 50 gold makes your net in 0, which defeats the purpose. Possibly 50 upkeep at 5 zones? This would also make towers more reasonable.
Prime zone aura: less damage reduction! Half of what it is now. As it is, its neigh impossible to win unless you have dragons vs footmen.
To go with this, you could have a scroll of TP with cooldown (say 5 mins). You can get back easier, but if your enemy really does have a better army, you might as well not bother.

Thats all for now, time to tear myself away from zone control evolutions and go ouside.... :eek:


about heros: I like them as is! Sometimes i just go around with only one (the one with the aura) as they are expesive to revive and aid your enemies (when they die). I like the way heros are anti-unit instead of anti-hero, like you might find in an arena.
Wow. This game souns like you have put a lot of work into it. From what i hear it it should come out great and i realy wish i could still play (i can not re install Warcraft cause of computor problems). All i have to say about the concept, is that you may want to make sure when hosting this map that it is only for people with good computors. If some people start joining these games with slow computors, and laggin the game out it could cause dislike. Other than that the idea is great, a couple more heros would probably help and other than that i hope it all works out well for ya.
hey all!
it's been a while without internet - time enough to spend some more thoughts on my map and on what needs changing for the release.

the heroes: that was (as already mentioned) a tough bit of concept work, which I most probably won't change YET, i.e. for the release of this map. Same with map terrain: I CHOSE to keep it simple, since I thought that the blood and corpses of hundreds of units are better than any doodad. :D Well, not quite. Doodads make the map slower, both when loading and when the CPU tries to move whole armies over the map whilst making every unit walk around any doodad. So, again, in this 'classic' version, it won't happen. Yet your suggestions will find entry into the next map, which will make use of all the hard work of scripting and unit balancing, but be smaller (3 teams, 6 players, less zones), and boast candy terrain, provide more heroes (I thought of having heroes purchasable again, so you'd be able to choose 2 out of 5-7, i.e. 2 heros for your race PLUS 3-5 neutral heroes with custom triggered new spells) and ideally have an additional race.

thanks for your suggestions, crazed.
I thought I had managed a good deal with the upkeep. It's by far not too hard to rule the map and have 'many gold' with 4 zones on average, temporarily maybe 6 or 7.

For other people out there: go, have a play, see if you like my map, and if you have further suggestions - both for this version, as well as for ZCE2, write them down and help me push the limits of zone control maps!

weird writing? sounds strange.
check it out manually: "custom map submission" - it's (still) one of the bottom few maps on the first page.
That's a good idea and a very noble undertaking. When I joined TH you had like 25 posts. You really gained skill faster than I did! My second actually playable map is almost done, but it's really just a souped up version of the free DotA template. You can use JASS! Great work.
Hey Fire!
thanks for the laurels :eek:

Have you played the map yet? Any comments, criticism, opinions?
What do you think about unit balance, heroes, terrain and AI?
Any more ideas for ZCE2?
I be glad to receive more ideas and opinions on what needs improving.
Your map map sounds pretty interesting and I would like to try it but for some reason whenever I try to download any map from the custom map submission area it just brings me to a website with a bunch of weird symbols and writing and stuff. When I try downloading attachments in the forums, it works. So could you attach this map to a post.
Zone control was pretty cool on starcraft. soory for the poor people who never got to play it. I thought Golems was better though. More interesting except I think it might have been rigged..... Good luck with your map.
Hey! thanks for your interest.

I deleted the screenshots to free some upload space.
Should there be further problems with the upload link from the map submission section, just download it from this very post.

Map attached here:
new version - AI support done!

I've been working on this the last 72 hours with very little sleep in between.
Having seen very little daylight in the last days, I've finally managed to bring the AI to a point I'm really satisfied with the outcome:

*it makes good use of heroes, including levelling up, hero-flee and the purchase and use of potions and magic items
*it builds structures depending on the tier, and reacts on building-attacks with defense structures, once the defense tier 3 is reached
*it rapidly and efficiently upgrades damage and armor and completes as many custom researches as possible

I played quite a few rounds against the new AI, which is a lot more demanding, and a lot more fun than the previous, 30% completed AI.
Set to difficult (insane), it kicked my butt on my own map...mass battle with greater masses of units than ever before, boasting an enormous upgrading speed, and absolutely massive kill rates: even outranging the 10.000-kills mark until the end of the round (43:50 minutes)... one word: intense!
The 'normal' AI is tough: it upgrades and attacks about as fast as a pretty good human player; and on easy it just keeps a low profile, which is good for newbie training; so there's about anything for every player skill.

Apart from that, from Version 1.73 to 1.76 the map has undergone several minor and major balancing issues, especially the level 4 skills of some heroes needed to be adjusted, e.g. TrueShotAura[level 4]: was 55%, now 40%; further readjustment has been done to align the splash damage of tier6 war dragons, the attack speed of tier1 footmen, and the damage caused by normal type weapons on medium and fortified armor.

There are still some final betatests standing on (where are you, Crazed? - let's go testin'!), and the final tier 6 cinematics need to be completed, so it'll still take a lil' while before I can be sure to release a neat and flawless map.

What else can be said? Whoever fancies an action-driven, fast-paced WC3-game based on extreme mass combat, high kill rates combined with sophisticated strategy should download and play this map!
On thrall, his ulti said shadow hunter or something
towards the end it gets a little to costly to reivive your hero
are your race and the comp difficulty detreminded like in melee games? (you select from the screen where the host presses start game)
you need to add in a fountan and an item that gives increased mana regen

Those are my comments
kc102 said:
On thrall, his ulti said shadow hunter or something
towards the end it gets a little to costly to reivive your hero
are your race and the comp difficulty detreminded like in melee games? (you select from the screen where the host presses start game)
you need to add in a fountan and an item that gives increased mana regen

Those are my comments

Hey kc!

You made some good comments here!

- I must have overseen the tooltip of thralls ulti; corrected it!

- sure, heroes do get costly towards the end. I usually end up with one or several thousand gold in the last two tiers, so I didn't bother much; the heroes are still worth it. Yet playing against a tough adversary as the AI on difficult gets me less kills, hence less cash. So I turned the maximum revival cost for a level 14 hero down to 800. (still too much?)

- absolutely, race and difficulty are determined as in melee games, before you'd even start the map. Maybe I should make that clearer in the map description.

- For the mana regeneration: I thought about the fountain thingy, but it's sort of in the way if I'd place it in the middle of the map. Best for mana is to buy the mana potions for 50 gold, and when you've got more gold towards the middle/end of the round, go with tomes of intelligence+2 (costs 70 gold); I made the tomes less costly than in most hero arena maps; I think their fairly priced.

Apart from that, I made some additional changes: selecting 'launch tutorial' at the beginning, you'll even more than before play the game as in some sort of starter edition: bounty is set to on, and some tooltips pop up. I thought this could be helpful.
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