SMA – KTV Bastion is that kind of map that has required huge amounts of work and thought for it to become a real thing, even for my own standards of work Bastion simply takes the trophy AND the medal. The initial layouts and ideas had the Third bases be on highgrounds while the Natural had two entrances at each side, the initial map overall was quite messy from my perspective, but the underlying idea of a forward Third on a Mirror Symmetry 4 player map was quite interesting and something I really wanted to achieve.
As I said, the initial sketches had some interesting ideas in them, but because of several reasons they sadly simply wouldn’t do, I have faced needing to ditch sometimes months of work and pondering before, simply because the ideas don’t have a solid way to materialize themselves with all the restrictions the SC2 engine and Blizzard have, yet I wouldn’t give up on this map so easily, the idea of having the Third bases be forward creating a center that’s not trivial to get to, specially on close spawn locations because players armies would be pinned down defending their bases by their opponent’s army leaving the rest of the map to harass squads was just too good to ditch.
It took me around a month of just working on and off on Bastion to get it somewhere I would feel mildly comfortable with it. I as a level designer simply despise straight attack lines between players because that to me just means wasted potential, and that’s where I hit a very big wall because the SC2 engine only allows different 3 height levels, where there original idea for the map basically required the 3, 6, 9 and 12 o-clock positions to be on lowground for the map to avoid having straight army movement pathways on it. Even when by the years I have built a solid amount of ways for me to create a 4th level, the engine changes from HotS to LotV broke the big majority of these tricks.
Yet SC2 still is incredibly rich on different ways to get around these kid of issues, even if far from ideal, adding Line Of Sight blockers to the top of ramps has proven time and time again to work very well in creating very awkward positions that players prefer not to fight on, very much like the situation that occurs when a player fights an army that has highground advantage.
Sadly, not all ideas can come to fruition, that’s the case for the open Natural the map had, even when the map worked wonderfully on midgame to lategame scenarios, because of the accelerated start on LotV and the delay between Zerg and Protoss scouting, Zerg early game had the upper hand when it comes to pressure, and because of the ease when it comes to taking 3 bases, Zerg could hit a wild variety of timings while being relatively safe and have a economy advantage.
Yet, because the map couldn’t have the open Natural design it does not mean that the map is bad or anything remotely close to that, it actually means that the map is even more solid because players don’t have to fear about dying every time they try to be mildly greedy to rushes.
That said, the ideas of the original design of Bastion still sound very attractive to me, and I’ll continue to pursuit them. I would also like to thank all the people that helped me with Bastion and my other Blizzard submission games, I can only wonder where Bastion and others would have ended up with without your help.
Map Size: 176×176
Close Spawn’s Rush Distance: 238
Close Spawn’s Nat to Nat Distance: 178
Cross Spawn’s Rush Distance: 290
Cross Spawn’s Nat to Nat Distance: 230
Xel’naga Towers: 0
Size of Natural ramp leading to the Third: Standard 2x sized Ramp.
Changelog of the map
♦ Removed miss-placed GameHeart splats.