It occurs to me that almost no one ever makes single player maps anymore. I can understand why: it's a time-consuming effort, and the quality of most solo maps nowadays is high enough to maybe intimidate newer mappers. But I think the strength of Marathon lies in its single player, and so here I am once again to try and rally some mappers together to make a new scenario project.
I've always thought the Xmas scenarios and Winter I were surprisingly good, given how blind each contributor was in what they were making. And Kill Them All was really a joy to work on. So, $lave and I are going to lead a new mapmaking project that begins today and will hopefully wrap up by the end of summer. The trick: this time, everyone will just be making a regular old Marathon Infinity scenario, rather than having to use a brand new shape set and being confined to one set. This will have two advantages: one, it'll let mappers make basically whatever they want, and two, it will be very easy for some of the less-dedicated players to play the game without having to waste time setting it up. (Plus, you can play co-op.)
So this project, which I'll call "Project X" until the project is over, is going to function basically like the Xmas and Winter projects. It'll be a freely open project, so anyone who wants to contribute can. All you have to do is make something! Plus, there's no special shapes to wait for. You can make any kind of map you want. Use any texture set, have any kind of objective you want, it doesn't matter as long as it's good stuff.
Unlike Xmas and Winter, you are free to include your own shapes patches, physics, and Lua/MML. However, please
do not go overboard with these. For shapes, make sure new textures work well with default Infinity textures, and don't mess with monster sequences or colors. A shapes patch like the Paradise Lost shapes
will work fine. For physics, feel free to modify monsters, but don't mess with the player or the weapons (and once again, don't go overboard). Same with Lua/MML; use it to add things like fog or bottomless pits. Don't do anything too absurd.
You are intentionally not told what the story is. This is how all of the Xmas projects worked, and as you can see, the story came together pretty nicely even though no one had any idea what they were doing. Be sure your map includes pattern buffers and terminals, but leave the terminals blank. $lave and I will fill in the terminals and arrange the maps in the best order once we have all of the submissions. You can also make your maps as easy or difficult and as simple or complex as you like. Play to your own strengths. Just keep in mind that you have no idea where these maps will fall in the final scenario. Include enough weapons and ammo so that you can finish the level even if you were to level-skip to it, and please, no Rebellion levels. Also, make sure your maps are co-op capable: provide at least 3 spawn points and make sure players can't get stuck at the beginning of the level (or don't spawn in lava, or something like that). Also make sure you have a pattern buffer at or near the start of the level. Just trust me on that.
The deadline for map submissions will be July 31; that's about three months from now. That should be long enough for you to scrounge together at least one map. Your map can be short or long, it's not a big deal. However, I am looking for a reasonable amount of development in your levels. Something tiny like a Kill Them All level is probably too simple for me. For good examples, look at the Xmas and Winter scenarios. They don't need to be massive, but they should at least have some meat to them.
To submit your map, send me an email at email@example.com
with the files attached. Give the email a subject like "PROJECT X submission" so I know what it is. Make sure to include your physics, shapes, and lua if you have those too. (Send it unmerged, please.) Include a brief description of what your map is, including the objective, and PLEEEEASE add annotations on the map for where the terminals are and what number they are. By that, I mean use the Annotation tool or something and mark the map itself in Forge/Weland. Send in your submission by July 31; $lave and I will do our very best to have the final product out by or before September 1.
Remember: you can make just about whatever you want. Just make something, dangit! It's a lot of fun and the end result is always fun.
PS: $lave and I will be looking over your maps and making sure they're good quality. We'll give you advice on how to improve your maps. We want good stuff! Make sure to test them and get all the kinks out, and don't be offended if we tell you how to fix your map. It's all for the greater good.