Lately I've been working on building a city, and in the process I've basically learned that building a city is a lot more than just slapping down some of the prefabbed buildings. Unfortunately, because none of the buildings can actually be entered, you basically have to design custom buildings too, which can be quite time consuming-- especially when you're like me and plan on making 5 buildings which can be entered, and want them all to be of good quality.
A Possible Concept For A Contest
Anyway, that got me thinking: maybe this would be an interesting idea for a contest. Instead of building a mission, or even a full city, all that would be involved is designing the best custom building possible. As the contest host, I would provide the prizes, which would probably be 500 C-points for the winner, and a master key or equivalent cost in energy credits for every runner-up/honorable mention (you can't buy gifts of c-points in less than 500 point increments, unfortunately).
The winning building, and possible some of the runners-up would also be featured in my upcoming mission, along with full credit being given to the architects, as well as a plug for their mission(s) (if applicable). In addition, I could also announce the contest and winners to the mailing list I've been building up based on my missions.
Obviously, on my part I would get some cool buildings to include in my city, which would lessen the amount of time involved in making the mission, and it could also be the first stab at collaboration among Foundry authors.
Pros & Cons
The pluses for the contest is that it would be less time consuming than making an entire mission, and it would cater to those with different strengths and interests. There might be some people out there who enjoy designing things in the Foundry editor, but who don't really enjoy coming up with stories (or maybe they just aren't the best at it). Also maybe some people out there would just like a change of pace and a bit of a different challenge.
At the same time, I can see that people might not like the idea of creating a structure that would be used in someone else's mission, when they'd rather just save it to be used in their own mission. So, that's definitely a potential down side. If that's a problem I could drop the idea of featuring the building in my mission, but that sort of removes some of my motivation for providing the prizes.
Also, one thing that may be worth considering it that several entries into The Grand Nagus's city contest had very few plays, and frankly did not get the exposure that they deserved. So, something might be said for collaborating.
Anyway, that's the concept. Since this is obviously breaking new ground (pun intended), I thought it would be better to gauge if anyone was even interested, before going to the effort of officially organizing the contest.
If you're interested in the concept, or think it would be a good idea, then let me know. If there is enough interest then I will move forward on the contest. If there's only a couple people interested, then maybe we can come to some other arrangements, rather than having a contest.
Or it's possible that no one is interested, in which case I'll just chock this up to being a well intentioned but ultimately flawed concept.
An interesting idea for sure, and I would think you would get some takers. As far as the cons you mentioned regarding using the building in your mission, I don't see why even if it is used in other missions it would be an issue. Pretty much like the sharing of assets that we do on starbaseugc.com anyway. (i.e. sickbay, transporter).
And if you are going to mention the architect in your mission, I personally wouldn't mind sharing the asset if I were to enter and it was chosen.
Might even be a good way to get more of my fleet to try their hand in and learn the Foundry, with map building being such a large part of our missions, it might garner some interest as well as gain experience for new authors.
Look forward to more info on your idea as well as to see what other feedback you get, if it comes to pass, let us know the contest date and I'll mention it in my fleet and friends to perhaps give it a go as they dive into learning the Foundry.
I'd be interested in trying this. It may not be a very good building, as I haven't built anything from scratch in the foundary yet, but trying ti with one building at first would certainly be easier than going for a full blown map first.
And even if I didn't get it done in time for the contest, I would still be interested in feedback.
What kind of building were you thinking of? Single floor square building with a couple of rooms? Of course, you would need to tell me how we would share our buildings as well.
Some of us used to share assets. It isn't the easiest procedure in the world.
In fact one disappointing thing for me when I returned from my months-long hiatus is that Sabredruid doesn't seem to be around anymore. He used to build assets for the community by request. He made a Klingon courtroom, an Orion slave market and more and put up the object/coordinate list. In fact I have his courtroom in one of my missions (not yet released).
I'd love to see more of this. Not sure if I'd enter your contest, I don't think my builds live up to someone like Alimac (aside from maybe my Romulan Senate), but I'd love to see the kinds of responses you'd get.
Is there some easy way to share assets that i am unaware of? As far as I know, the only way is to share a list of objects and coordinates, which is ruefully tedius for an entire building i think.
(At least the way I make buildings)
The way I was thinking of doing it is by using /ugcexport. Unfortunately, it does have to be manually re-entered. Although, Pendra did create a utility to automate the entry process. I've never actually tried it to see if it works, but that might be faster if it does.
Since it seems like a few people are interested and it seems that people are not completely against the idea of sharing assets, I'll probably go ahead with the contest.
I agree that there's no reason a building has to be only used in one mission. It's not like we don't already re-use levels and other assets from the Foundry set anyway. The only real risk is if the same building ended up being used in like every other mission, but I doubt that would ever be a serious problem.
Contest or no contest, I have a map that I am particularly proud of and would love to share with the community. The map will be featured in my next foundry mission, "Eclipse #2: The Borg of 4028", hopefully to be released in a week or two.
The map isn't of a "building" per se. It is intended to be a small area on the exterior surface of a Borg Transwarp Hub. A Borg Transwarp Hub is a space station the size of a small moon, large enough to have light gravity and a thin layer of breathable air. The map contains a single path the player can traverse by hopping, jumping and walking across narrow beams. The path eventually leads up to a marker on the top of a Borg cubical "building" where the player will be beamed back to their ship. There is also a pit and a small "dungeon" area containing two groups of Borg.
I have just published the map under a mission titled "Borg Transwarp Hub Exterior". Any one is free to use it for their mission if someone can show me how I can list down the coordinates of the objects I have used to create this map.