.personal / Semois 2

Semois 2


Semois was one of the most popular maps of the original Company of Heroes in 1v1 play. Depsite having chokepoints, there was enough opportunity for counter-play that competitive players seemed to really enjoy playing it. Having been able to look back on the map almost 8 years later, I saw areas I wish I could have gone back and improved or re-designed, so I decided I'd do the next best thing - build a new map.

I was inspired by Counter-Strike's de_dust2 - as popular as the original because it maintained similar gameplay while changing things up enough to keep it fresh - this is the direction I came from for Semois2. I started with the original map and then did an overpaint in photoshop, making changes and updates where I felt were needed. Ultimately it ended up being quite a bit different in term of flow from the original, but landed close enough to the mark.

At the time, I was starting to also get into streaming, so I streamed a lot of the map work which the community seemed to enjoy. I sort of wished we had done more of it on the official project, but there were concerns about NDAs, etc.

The hardest part for me was the art - I'm not an artist, so it took more time trying to make the map look somewhat good than actually building it. It doesn't look anywhere as good as the official maps done by the talented map artists, but I think I got it into a 'good enough' state.

Lastly, I enlisted the competitive players who I had built a rapport with over the years to playtest. I'd send them the map, they'd play some 1v1s and provide feedback which I could then implement (including the aformentioned Church update which I had no idea about). Eventually we got it to a point where I released it to the community.

Reaction seemed mostly positive - one of CoH's bigger casters did an interview with me on it and another of the top player smade a video review. I had planned to port it to CoH2 but never got around to it, sadly.