World In Conflict: Call For Cartographers

By John Walker on May 1st, 2008 at 6:28 pm.

I don't recognise this Ordinance Survey markings at all.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun officially loves World In Conflict. Announced today is Sierra’s WiC map-building compo, and a chance to see your map in an official release.

The competition asks players to create their own multiplayer maps for WiC using the map making tool, then to submit them to the competition, with a chance to win $1000, an Nvidia 8800GT, and your map in their game.

It would be extremely excellent to see your home-made map go on sale to the world – there’s no denying it. But the press release’s claims that the prize’s effect are perhaps a little bold. They will:

“help the winning amateur level designer continue their quest to become a professional game developer,”

Were it only for that £500 and a new standard graphics card, I’d be working for Valve by now! Oh, listen to us. Go on, get designing and win, and then boast about it here. Then buy us stuff with your money.

Hidden away in the small-print rules is the detail that there are four categories for which the winners will get a graphics card. They are:

1. Best DX10 Functionality Map
2. Best Tug-of-War Map
3. Best Assault Map
4. Best Domination Map

Then there’s some muddle about whether only the grand prize map goes in to the retail release, or other winning entries. But of course, if you enter at all, you’re giving them your map for good. And finally, because I love the hyperbole of legal jargon, here’s what you give Sierra when you enter:

“Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, you acknowledge that Sponsor shall have the right to use, modify, reproduce, publish, perform, display on all forms of media, distribute, make derivative works of and otherwise commercially and noncommercially exploit the Entry Materials and your name in connection therewith in perpetuity and throughout the universe, in any manner or medium now existing or hereafter developed, without separate compensation or credit to you or any other person or entity.”

Throughout the universe!

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14 Comments »

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  1. DigitalSignalX says:

    Maps…. in… SPACE!!!!!!
    But on the other hand, when the giant ape insects of our distant future children are sifting through the rubble and come across a copy of copy of world in conflict, it will suck when they say “Hey, this is a great map. Too bad we can’t send a couple yen in royalties to the maker’s family.”

  2. Larington says:

    Throughout the universe, that line oozes awesome.

  3. Jim Rossignol says:

    Anyone think we should run an RPS map-making contest?

  4. John Walker says:

    Can we have the same incredibly mad rules of ownership?

  5. RichPowers says:

    What type of added functionality does DX10 offer? I thought that was a peculiar category.

    Users make awesome maps; contests spread the awesomeness to the community; the circle of life is complete…or something.

  6. John Walker says:

    I think it involves making a map that will work fine in DX9, and then lying about it to sell graphics cards and operating systems.

  7. Mull says:

    Umm, when will the results of the WiC favourite tank competition be announced?

  8. Rook says:

    I think in world in conflict Dx10 has volumetric lighting (god rays), soft particles (smoke doesn’t clip and is affected by other objects such as helicoptors) and cloud shadows. It also has some special sort of dual screen rendering.

    edit: ohh you cynic.

  9. Kismet says:

    It seems that those rules are only for North Americans, for us Europeans there’s a more down to earth (!) set of rules.

  10. Jonathan says:

    From the European Legal spool
    “The full terms of the Contest have been deposited at the office of Maître Venezia, huissier de justice (court officer) at 130, avenue Charles de Gaulle BP 131 Neuilly-sur-Seine in Neuilly-sur-Seine (92 203). They are available on simple written request sent to the organizing company. The stamp will be refunded on simple request sent to the Consumer Service of Vivendi Games Europe, legibly bearing mention of the competition, first name, last name and details of the addressee by joining his bank account details.”

    Levels of legal flim flam mean I can’t tell whether that’s meant as another joke or whether lawyers think you’ll give someone your bank details to refund a stamp.

    Still it’s good that they specify that World in Conflict is an “interactive game”.

  11. Andrew Armstrong says:

    Jonathan; as I read somewhere recently, there are major problems having any kind of prize-offering competition in some regions. No doubt that’s part of the boilerplate agreement needed.

    Interesting (and quite good!) prizes. The DirectX 10 one is a joke though, since it sounds like all the graphical effects that get added with DX10 are more applied during battle then on the map itself. What do they do anyway, take screenshots in both and compare them? Urg…I’d hate to judge that :)

    Shame the ownership rules are so draconian, but I suspect they are necessary, since otherwise there could be a ton of problems. The use of the persons name is a bit unsettling however.

  12. Okami says:

    1000€ for a fully realized RTS map? No bad deal for them… Not that I’m implying that they are evil money grabbers who exploit their fans. I’m really not. But if there’s a reasonably number of entries, the chances are rather good, that they’ll get a few really polished and well balanced maps.

  13. Rook says:

    I’m sure once they had 1000 entries submitted, any future maps they would have developed, someone, somewhere would have cried that it was a rip-off of their map. Just look at the UT3 boat map dabacle.

  14. Janto says:

    Well, as with any competition, the real prize for the company isn’t the winners, but all the other entries they receive. It’s not a huge issue for fan-created material, but I’ve heard designers mutter about entering competitions and seeing their (non-winning) designs be used by the company latter, which is just a tad unethical, even if it’s legit. Still, could be worse. I seem to remember that some publisher had a clause whereby they automatically owned any portfolio material you sent them, although possibly not throughout the universe.