0micron: How long did it take for you to complete Onyx from start to finish? In general, how long does it usually take to finish a remake?
February has come and gone without any hesitation (RIP Feb. 29th) meaning that it's time for yet another Community Favorites results! Even though the month may have been short, you all never disappoint with the amount of talent you share with us! Without further adieu, here are the map nomination results!
Starkiller Base is a 4v4 map taking place, you guessed it, the First Order's main home, Starkiller Base from the Star Wars Universe. D4rkDeath did a wonderful job visually with great color scheme and texture blending to convey the atmosphere of Star Wars Episode VII or Battlefront II. Be sure to check this map out if you're a Star Wars fan even slightly!
Inspired by visuals from Ghost Town in Halo 3, Box Town is an asymmetrical 2v2 map that plays more vertically than most other 2v2 maps; making for interesting conflicts that will have you traversing throughout the whole map frequently. Originally a block out entitled, Box CE; Box Knows moved out of his usual comfort zone and did the art himself (with some help from a few friends). So if you're looking for something new and exciting to play competitively on, I highly recommend giving this one a bookmark.
Originally created by HahCrazy for the Halo 4 Team Throwdown Playlist, Surgeon Foge has played a good game of Operation and beautifully transferred the map's original scale and feel to Halo 5's sandbox without falter along with a visual overhaul. I decided to have a short chat with Foge to get some more details behind the map and some of his forging processes:
Foge: Onyx took about a month to a month and a half from start to finish. I was working on a couple other projects at the time as well, so it wasn't the only map I was working on. I would say the average time it takes to make a remake varies from map to map, usually they take around a whole month for me to really get them super polished up, but usually the majority of the map is done within 2 weeks or so with me working on them everyday.
0micron: It’s clear that many creative liberties were put in place to complete the overall atmosphere and aesthetic of Onyx. Where did you gather inspiration from to aid you in the map’s unique look coming to fruition?
Foge: Originally Onyx was meant to have a jungle temple theme, and only after I finally finished the entire blockout of the map did I realize that was no longer going to be in the maps best interest. I decided to go with something that somewhat resembled a futuristic training ground style aesthetic. I never directly took any inspiration from any other sources. I pretty much laid out a large majority of the more detailed forge pieces and looked at what could work well together to give the map a good look that was somewhat futuristic. I think something that's really important in maps that not enough people do is include aesthetics that expand upwards out of the map geometry, and that's something I wanted to accomplish with this map as well.
0micron: What type of method do you use to help embody the original scale of Onyx from Halo 4 and translate that to Halo 5’s sandbox so well?
Foge: The way I started with scaling out Onyx was going into Halo 4 and using the spawn zones to measure between the maps boundaries. I then put that measured info onto an overview of the map seen here:
0micron: Many people have become familiar with your name due to your work and assistance with countless recreations of older Halo maps. Do you mind being known as “that guy that makes those remakes” or would you rather not have that sort of “label” associated with you?
Once that is done I go into forge and recreate the outer boundaries of the map and work my way from the center of the map measuring from the already determined boundaries.
Foge: I certainly do not mind having that label attached to me, and to be totally honest I'm not surprised that I have that label, it's rather nice knowing you are one of the best at something and have a reason to be known at all. Im certainly starting to work on more original works now however, as the majority of past Halo maps that people want to play on have remakes that are scaled correctly and aesthetically faithful to the original.
0micron: I'm assuming that this is far from your last map in Halo 5. Do you have any plans in the works that you can talk about at this time?
Foge: Actually I figured I'd quit while i'm ahead so at this time I’d like to announce my retirement from Forge. Nah but really I have a couple things in the works. I have a book full of potential layouts and such but few rarely get to the actual concept or blockout stage within the game due to the limitations forge has. Currently I am working on finalizing a few 4v4 designs with one getting close to a playable blockout state for testing. Here's a little teaser picture for that map, which is currently titled “Russet Redo 7” and yes, Redo 7 means the number of times I've reworked the map. The map is intended to be designed for highly competitive symmetrical 4v4 gameplay that caters extremely well to halo 5’s movement system.
And there you have it! Remember that what gets put on ballot is decided by the Forge Critics! It's up to you all to nominate maps for the vote! Not a Forge Critic? You can make suggestions for nominations to any staff member or any critic as well! Your voice matters too! Congratulations once again to all our candidates and winners!
See you next time!