Thursday, September 8, 2011

Vechs' Race For Wool: Death Becomes You, Yet Again

If you've read me before, you know that I'm a total fangirl when it comes to Vechs' series of Super Hostile Maps for Minecraft. Recently, there's been a new twist involving a new type of map Vechs has created: a competition specifically designed for multiplayer teams called “Race For Wool”.1

At spawn. Read the rules and prepare for your doom.


This is how it came about:

AvidyaZen originated a concept regarding an adventure map/map series that would pit teams from two to five players each against each other competitively, as well as encouraging PVP and involving resource control. This was then further discussed in's IRC channel with Coestar and Guude. Since Guude was LPing Vechs' Legendary map, he brought the idea to Vechs, who then ran with it. Vechs created the map specifically for the 420 and OOG teams and then released it to them to enable recording before the map was made public.2 Avidya, Coe, Guude and BdoubleO dangled tidbits of information in their Let's Plays about a “secret project”. Soon, (but not soon enough for me) these four began releasing their videos. Three days ago, to be exact.

Not like I was counting or anything.

It only LOOKS bucolic-evil lurks beneath.

The map was play-tested by PauseUnPause, Zisteau (moar fangirl, watch Kaizo Caverns if you haven't already), JoeHills and ZombieCleo, supervised (and laughed at) by Vechs. Clips from the test games were uploaded into a promo video by PauseUnPause that you can see here. Super Hostile veteran players will recognize elements of many of Vechs' maps: Canopy Carnage, Sea of Flame and Kaizo Caverns are among the well-represented evil creations, set to a smaller scale.

I wanna play this map. I wanna play it so bad my teeth ache. It's signature Vechs evil, full of sneaky traps, multiple spawners, tight corners, TNT, and best of all, hostile players that will use anything and everything to sabotage you and your teammates. 

Just like I like it.

Play this, and you and your friends will acquire another interesting, descriptive level to your language, trust me. Just don't use it around your mother. The only things that seems to be missing are Vechs' traditional signs trolling the players, but it is entirely possible that they are there, just undiscovered by any LPers as of yet.

Bring it on, I dare ya.

As Race For Wool is a bit more complex due to Multiplayer participation, the rules are more extensive than Vechs' usual Super Hostile maps. The rules are as follows, break them at the peril of being posted as a cheater on the Minecraft Forums:

The map is divided into two identical lanes. Each team plays on a lane, and rushes to place colored wool blocks on their Victory Monument, the first team to place all the blocks wins.

Each lane is 32 blocks wide, and once the map has started (Both teams leave the starting platform.) players are STRICTLY FORBIDDEN from leaving their lanes. At no point may players leave the 32 block width of their lane, and if they do, the other team may, at their discretion, claim victory and disqualify the offending team. Should an explosion or other game effect move a player off their lane involuntarily, the player must immediately fall into the void and die (likely to happen anyway, but the player might land on a block between lanes...).

However, players may, upon both teams consensus prior to the map starting, act upon each other with ranged techniques -- as long as the players stay within their area, they may shoot arrows, push blocks via pistons, and use TNT cannons, or other available techniques to harass and slow down the other team. (It is in the spirit of the map for players to be as hostile and confrontational to the other team as possible. In other words, they should be SUPER HOSTILE to each other.)

Should a player die and not have a bed available to respawn at, they must leave the starting platform and immediately return to their lane.

Players may break blocks, craft, and for the most part play Minecraft as normal, but they must acquire the goal wools from chests in the map, and not use dyes to acquire the wool colors. Players are also prohibited from moving on top of the map ceiling, should such a roof be present.

For shorter games, players may agree to play for specific wools -- for example, a game until Green Wool is acquired, or a game until Green and Blue are acquired.3

All you need to play is a server, and a bunch of highly competitive friends that are ready and willing to kill each other. Due to the size of the teams involved, we haven't seen much PVP other than setting off the pre-laid traps and some random arrow shots. I believe if the teams get bigger we could see some serious TNT cannon action, which someone needs to record (HINT).

The possibilities for destruction are endless...

What about replayability? According to the playtesting team, repeated playthroughs only made the games more competitive, since familiarity and experience with the map layout gave players the opportunity to actually pursue a strategy other than racing in and dying repeatedly.

This map looks to be a ton of fun. Go and download it here. Play. Die frequently. Have insane amounts of fun...again.

Remember, Vechs is always just dying to kill you...but now your competitors are as well.


1Although many Let's Players are calling the map “Race For the Wool”, or RFTW, Vechs has stated in a YouTube comment that the map is correctly called “Race For Wool”.
2Courtesy of AvidyaZen. (Thanks! <3)
3From the Readme file, Race For Wool by Vechs

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