Teien was my second Mann vs Machine map for Team Fortress 2, and my first entry TF2Maps.net's Mapper's vs Machines contest. It is a large sprawling map set in a rural Japanese town, a setting I have always wished to do. For this project, I did both the level design and artwork.
Teien was perhaps one of the most challenging maps I've designed to date. It had been a long time since I had designed a PvE map and I struggled to find a good design. Designing for a Mann vs Machine map is a very different experience to designing for players, as the robot A.I. requires very strict instruction, and can fail very easily. In addition, they do not care about traditional design techniques used to control players, like lighting and layout.
After many iterations I arrived on the current layout, but I am still not happy with it - the primary problems being the large size and open nature of the map. Many of these design lessons were then put into Sequoia which turned out to stronger for having this map as it's predecessor.
The artwork however, was very fun to do, a primary reason why I took this map to completion was to flex my ability to use a theme and assets I had used before, in Suijin and Sulfur in a new way - this way to do a rural, residential town as opposed to a shrine or castle. I created multiple new materials to augment this end, but mostly reused assets from my previous maps to cut down on time. That said, I am very pleased with the results.