Heavy-duty Super-mapping Super-contest is a follow-up contest to the 2011 mapping contest, ‘Summer Mapping Initiative’; aiming to promote and reward skill in puzzle design and advanced map-making techniques. In achieving the above, we anticipate the contest will produce fantastic content for the Portal 2 player-base to enjoy, and provide incentive for folks newly introduced to mapping via PTI to grow and expand their skills. The contest is a free-roaming mapping competition, meaning entrants have complete creative freedom over their entry. The very best maps, as judged by a team of staff and community members from the Thinking With Portals and The Portal Wiki communities, will receive the prizes listed below; and have their work spotlighted on ThinkingWithPortals.


Dota began as a user-made modification for Warcraft 3 and has grown into one of the most played online games in the world. Following in the tradition of Counter-Strike, Day of Defeat, Team Fortress, Portal, and Alien Swarm, Dota 2 is the result of Valve hiring the community developers who built the mod and giving them the chance to finally build a full product out of their idea with the help of a professional team of developers and artists at Valve.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS: GO) will expand upon the team-based action gameplay that it pioneered when it was launched 12 years ago. CS: GO features new maps, characters, and weapons and delivers updated versions of the classic CS content (de_dust, etc.)

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Submission Rules

  • Maps must be authored with Hammer Editor. You are free to use the Puzzle Maker as a tool for prototyping your ideas, but maps must be designed and built in Hammer Editor.
  • Maps should be made within the timespan of the competition; previously authored content is not permitted.
  • You are not allowed to re-create any existing maps, regardless of the original author.
  • Your submitted map should only consist of one single map file (one .bsp); multi-map submissions are not allowed.
  • Maps must be submitted before 23:59 EDT on the last day of contest - August 5, 2012
  • Entries may not be modified after the above deadline, for any reason.
  • All maps must be submitted to the Download Database, in the “Contest” category.
  • You can only submit one map per game-mode (Single Player or Cooperative). While you may enter twice into both categories, we encourage focusing your attention on a single entry - thereby ensuring its quality.

Map Rules

  • Fulbright maps (maps without lighting) are not allowed.
  • Playground maps and/or maps with no objective are not allowed.
  • The map .bsp size cannot exceed over the limit of 100MB unarchived.
  • Maps must be completed without using engine glitches of any kind. (This includes, but is not limited to: reportal glitch, bunny hopping, funnel crouching etc.)
  • Maps must contain an entry and exit elevator or a well defined entry and exit.
  • Maps may contain custom assets as long as they are packed completely into the .bsp.

Enter the contest

Submitting your entry

Uploading your contest map to the contest section in the database means you have submitted your entry into the competition. You cannot submit a contest map later than 11:59pm EDT August 5, 2012. Try to submit your entry before the deadline, allowing yourself time to re-enter in case any problems cause your initial entry to fail.

You may upload your entry at any time, and continue to edit/modify the entry before the end of the contest. Please do not upload your map multiple times.

If you have any problems entering the contest, or you would like to remove your entry before the final date, please post in the 2012 Mapping Contest forum thread linked to the right.

2012 Mapping Contest Forum

Submitting to the Download Database

  • Navigate to the Mapping Contest Entries section of the Download Database.
  • In the top right-hand corner, click the upload a file button.
  • Just like a normal map submission to ThinkingWithPortals: name your submission, fill in the description and choose a thumbnail with dimensions and size specified. The thumbnail should be a descriptive picture which depicts your map.
    1. Maps uploaded to the Workshop should use the “External URL” option (tick) and put in the URL to your workshop map page.
    2. Co-op maps should use the standard uploading procedure using the upload button.
  • When all fields are correct choose the Submit button.
  • The download database should now have automatically created a thread for your contest submission with the appropriate download and thumbnail!

What now?

Sit, wait, and in a couple of weeks find out if you've won!

Mapping Tips:

  • Finish your map, but don’t submit it yet. Play it again the next day and see if you’re happy with the final result; you can often get too attached when working on something to be able to accurately evaluate it straight away.
  • Make sure to playtest maps and let friends test them too. You only have one chance for each category so give it your best!
  • Lighting is an important tool. Use to to draw players’ attention to puzzle elements, but never as a puzzle element itself; ensure players can see what they need to.
  • Inserting dialogue into your map is great for keeping a player entertained and informed about what is currently happening in your map.