In Starcraft: Brood War, custom-made maps, created mostly by professional Korean mapmakers, played a role in developing the game which cannot be overestimated. In StarCraft II, tournaments have come mostly to use the Battle.net ladder maps, which are, however, usually selected by Blizzard from submissions to the Team Liquid Map Contest.
Maps are easily the most important feature of balance aside from the units themselves. Brood War was not balanced by Blizzard's changing any unit statistics, but rather primarily by map design, with games on Lost Temple being far different from those on Big Game Hunters. Playstyles vary depending on the structure of the map. The synthesis of specific map features has an incalculable effect on particular situations on a given map.
- Choke Points
- Rich Mineral Fields (and Rich Vespene Geysers)
- Xel'Naga Towers
- Destructible Rocks
- Sight Blockers
- Destructible Towers
- Unbuildable Rocks
- Inhibitor Zone Generators, which slow movement but not attack speed in their AoE, first featured on Turbo Cruise '84 LE
- Reduced Mineral Fields, a line of patches with only 5-10 minerals, which initially bar pathways, first featured on Thunderbird LE
- Analyzing Map Features (e.g., #DreamPool) - eSportsHeaven.com
- Importance of Maps on Playstyle - produced by Clan EAT Casting Crew
- Abusing the Dream Pool - produced by Clan EAT Casting Crew
Retired/Inactive Mapmaking Teams
- Team Liquid Map Contest
- Map of the Month is an organization dedicated to highlighting and promoting well-made maps.
- Map Jam & Challenge is an on-going monthly competition to inspire creativity in mapmaking.
- See Community Maps for a list of community-made maps listed by mapmaker.
- See Melee Maps for some custom made maps.
- See Category-Maps for a list of everything map related on Liquipedia.
- See sc2melee.net for a list of every Starcraft II map with ratings by users.