I like big arguments!
Here is a list of my favourite slaughter map tactics, in order to conserve ammo, make them easier or simply have fun by twisting the game. Some of them are also applicable to "frugal" ammo-tight maps, like Jodwin's ;-)
- Abuse infighting whenever you can, even if it's an imp vs a demon or a zombieman vs a cacodemon. Obviously, it works best in the presence of powerful, rapid-firing monsters like mancubi, arachnotrons and even massed barons/cacos and chaingunners, although they are more risky. A single arachnotron can be goaded to take down even several barons of hell, if positioned favourably, and mancubi can really fuck up large arenas.
- Spider masterminds/cyberdemons make a joke out of any fight they're thrown in, as they will disrupt it and pretty much make an enemy out of every monster present there. The only risk is that, especially with Cyberdemons, they usually can survive almost everything you throw at them due to splash damage, and then you will be left alone with them (although weakened). Spider Masterminds make for far worse infighters in open arenas where powerful melee monsters can close the distance, and then you'll have the opposite problem: weaker monsters will have been weeded out, and tougher ones (usually of a single kind) will all turn their attention to you.
- Ring-o-rosing/merry-go-rounding: if pitted against overwhelming odds in big, open arenas filled with revenants firing at you from all angles and other monsters pouring in and where even slowing down to aim at something is insta-suicide, the best thing is keeping running around in circles until the baddies disrupt themselves enough with infighting to allow you to focus on a more precise attack. Of course this only works if there are several kinds of monsters that can infight.
- Alcoving/snaking: hide, take cover, hide in holes, nooks and crannies and let the baddies duke it out. If you manage to find a safe spot such as an alcove/foxhole you can defend and/or monsters cannot creep in, you can pretty much hold off entire armies. Sometimes it's the only viable thing to do until the baddies thin out their ranks by themselves.
- Revenant bottlenecking: a "dynamic" variation of the above, if sieged by revenants you can fend them off (or at least stall them) if you find an alcove deep enough to stay within the "no missile attack" distance of sieging revenants, farther than their melee range, and be narrow enough for them NOT to be able to walk in and close the melee distance (e.g. the alcove in the Great Bicycle Mystery MAP15). This way, revenants will soon crowd outside of it but their numbers and attraction towards their target (YOU) will keep them in a "stalemated" position: the one(s) closer to you won't fire at you (unless you go within melee range or move farther beyond the "no missile" range, and those farther away will fire uselessly at the backs of the frontal one. You can stay like this almost indefinitively, at least until other monsters drop in and infighting disrupts the equilibrium.
- Pillaring: hiding between pillars as much as possible and disrupting Archvile LOS attacks. You can even pull this off with 1-px wide pillars, and to a lesser degree you can disrupt Spiderdemon attacks.
- Archvile feud: try getting archviles to infight with powerful monsters e.g. cyberdemons on high ledges which are too much of a chose to take down individually, and let them do their job with their fire summoning attacks. The only risk is when other monsters can hit the Archvile too, disrupting its "feud" vs the intended indirect target.
- Abuse non-passable linedefs. Sometimes, they are just there, either by design or by mistake (plenty of examples in the Great Bicycle Mystery). These can be useful to leave crowded fights behind you and watch them "solve" themselves, or to retire in safe alcoves where monsters crowd outside and duke it out among themselves.
- Abuse lost-soul/pain elemental infighting: these can be extremely ammo-wasteful but also extremely disrupting for other monsters. I generally prefer fleeing crowded rooms with PEs and Lost Souls, only appearing briefly enough to force some of them to attack and provoke others so they start bumping themselves. Works best with impassable linedefs or alcoving.
- Use tysoning/chainsawing whenever possible. E.g. round corners, vs single zombies, demons, imps etc. even single mancubi and arachnotrons can be chainsawed with little fear of retaliation. Also, sometimes you can abuse small opening such as windows, fences, bars etc. to land free punches/chainsaw attacks to the monsters on the other side. Each hit landed this way is a saved ammo unit. Just be careful for retaliation (even through bars), and keep in mind whether you're more health-challenged than ammo-challenged. Usually on maps that have plenty of health but scarce ammo it pays to do isolated "close combat".
So, what are some of yours?
Last edited by Maes on 08-22-10 at 12:31