Map Editor

Hero Mages includes a map editor that can be used to create your own custom levels. This page discusses the various components of the map editor interface and offers some insight on how to leverage the team distribution start zone setting to build effective multiplayer maps.

Map Editor Interface

The Map List Pane

The map list pane allows you to create, save, load, and remove maps from your collection as well as define the map properties.

Map List Pane

  • Map Slots: This field indicates the number of map save slots you have used out of the total map slots you have available. In order to save maps, you must have available map slots. These can be purchased in the Marketplace for only $1 each. The best part is you can overwrite/delete/reuse your map slots indefinitely.

  • Map Name: Type the desired name of your map.

  • Map Description (optional): The map description will appear below the map in the game lobby. Use this space to add an element of storytelling to your battleground or to provide suggestions for ideal game types to be played on the map.

  • Tileset: Choose the environment setting for your map. The choice is purely aesthetic and can be changed at any time without affecting the structure of your map.

  • Teams: The teams box allows you to select how you’d like to group teams together for when the “Team Distributed” start zones option is selected during game setup. The default option is “Together” and the other choice is “Scattered”. This setting affects how player’s are allocated start zones when playing the map. For more info, click here.

  • Max Players: This indicates the maximum players your map can support. You must place complete start zones for all players supported by your map for the structure to be valid. This is also the number that will appear next to your map in the map list.

    Even though maps may support a high max of players, they can still be designed to also support battles between fewer players. Read about Team Distribution to learn how an 8 player map can also be a duel map.

Map Design Tools

Map Design Tools

These buttons allow you to paint structures onto the map. To draw, click your desired button to enable the brush, then, click and drag over any empty space on the map. To erase, click and drag back over where you drew previously while your brush is active.

  • Walls: Create walls to block movement and line of sight.

  • Clear: Remove all structures on the board.

  • Start Zones: Place the starting locations for each team. A complete start zone consists of 3 spaces (1 Mage and 2 Guardians). The brush will paint these in the order of Guard 1, Mage, Guard 2.

  • Line of Sight Tool: This button allows you to test the visibility of areas on your map.

Creating Maps
To create a new map, type a desired name in the map name field and a description (optional), then press the “Save As New” button. This will create a new entry in the list to the right, ordered by the max players the map can support.

In order to save your map, you must have an available save slot. Additionally, your map must have a valid structure. For your structure to be valid, you will need to place the full number of start zones your map can support and, you may not have any fully enclosed chambers that would isolate one section of the map from another.

How Team Distribution Works
The default Start Zones configuration when creating a new game is “Team Distributed”. With this option enabled, the computer intelligently places players on the map in accordance with map design to keep teammates together. Understanding how Hero Mages distributes starting zones by teams will help you design effective multiplayer maps.

In general, the start zones are divided into groups by the number of teams and then distributed from each group sequentially to each player. There are two options for Team Distribution in the map editor “Together” and “Scattered”. Each option slightly alters how the computer handles the distribution.

Teams Together
When the map’s “Teams” option is set to “Together”, teams are divided as follows:
First, the number of start zones on the map is divided by the number of teams selected in the game. For instance, if you have 8 start zones on your map and play with 2 teams, then each team will be allocated 4 start zones (one team gets start zones 1, 2, 3, 4 and the other team gets zones 5, 6, 7, 8).

Players are then distributed to one of the start zones in their team’s pool starting with the lowest start zone first. In our example above, if we had 4 players in our game (2 per team) one team would get start zones 1, 2 and the other team would get start zones 5, 6. The actual positions each player gets are randomized.

The general idea when using “Together” is that you want to group your start zones sequentially by the number of teams.

[VALLEY OF WAR]Valley of WarValley of War works great as a 4vs4 or as a 2v2v2v2 map due to sequential team distribution. If two teams play, its top vs. bottom. If four teams play, it's four corners vs all.

[PERILOUS WASTES]Perilous WastesPerilous Wastes works great for duels and team games. In a 1v1 match, players are always assigned to zones 1 & 3. In a 2v2, one team gets zones 1 and 2, and the other gets zones 3 & 4.

Teams Scattered
When the map’s “Teams” option is set to “Scattered”, teams are divided similar to “Together” with one important difference: the map only uses start zones up to the number of players actually playing the game. For example, if you create an 8 player map, but only 4 players participate in the game, only start zones 1 through 4 will be used and distributed amongst the players.

Scattered team distribution is especially useful for maps like Circle of Slaughter or the ever popular “skittles” maps where heroes are scattered around the map because you can create a map with support for 8 players while still having an effective layout that works regardless of the number of actual people playing in the game.

[CIRCLE OF SLAUGHTER]Circle of SlaughterWith “Scattered” configuration, Circle of Slaughter works equally well with two, four, six, or eight players. In a game with only two players, only Start Zones 1 and 2 will be used. In a game with four players, only Start Zones 1 through 4 are used, and so forth.