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  • Doom External Control API - Simon Howard
    N/A - Vanilla - N/A - 52159 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    This is an API that takes advantage of a very obscure feature of Vanilla Doom. Using it, you can code custom drivers to use external devices. It even comes with source code. So if you ever wanted to code a driver for Vanilla Doom to control it with a USB dildo or something, here's your best shot.

  • Hell Awakened... - Death Dealer, insanoflex312
    Plutonia - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 5011224 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Phobus
    NOTE: This megaWAD is possibly for limit removing ports, but due to the presence of DECORATE and MAPINFO lumps, I'm going to play it safe and say it's ZDoom compatible (particularly as the secret exit is in MAP10 and exiting MAP32 leads you back to MAP11). Likewise, the text file is unclear on whether it's meant to play with the Doom 2 IWAD or the Plutonia one, but using plutonia.wad results in less missing textures, so I'll recommend that.

    "Hell Awakened..." is a real labour of love. According the various text files that come with the .WAD, the author spent over eight "F**KING" years making and remaking these maps. The troubled development and constant quest for perfection involving iterative designs, plenty of testing, and much more really speaks of his enthusiasm.

    So what is the result of all this time and dedication? Well, I think the best comparison I can draw is that we've got a 32 map megaWAD that has a similar scope to something like Community Chest 3. You know how almost every map in CC3 seems to be that specific author's magnum opus, almost as if they were trying to ensure that their giant map stands out in amongst all of the others? That's the kind of level size and experience you'll find in ha.zip, but with that added cohesion that I've seen people crying out for in these highly ambitious projects so often. That's right, the maps (and the accompanying story in the text files) make up one continuous narrative, in one style with consistent themes and detailing throughout. It's a truly epic adventure - it took me somewhere around 13 hours (plus a lot of dying time) to get through. After this long in development, I figured the least I could do was fully review the project.

    Next rhetorical question: Why did it take so long for me to beat? Well, I'm glad you asked! It basically boils down to two distinct reasons. The first is that layouts are mostly large and tend towards the non-linear, without many clues as to where exactly you have to go next to continue the linear progression. The second is that, after reading the author saying about how difficult this was, I considered playing on a difficulty lower than UV. However, as my manhood shriveled and images of future lovers faded before my eyes, I concluded that this wasn't going to beat me - after all, I was playing on ZDoom and using save games! This attitude lasted up until a point in MAP23 where I was literally unable to progress without cheating due to a chaingunner and a lack of health conspiring against me. Considering how much I'd already been through, and how long it took me to get there, I decided I could probably stand to drop to HMP in order to complete the play through and still retain my manly swagger. I was glad I did; the maps were still brutal, and it turns out MAP28 has 994 monsters on UV. Given that map on HMP with just over 700 monsters was still kicking my arse, I'll have a lot of respect for anybody who has the patience to batter through the hordes all the way to the end.

    The thing is, the gameplay isn't just a slog through hundreds and hundreds of enemies. A lot of the enemy placement is practically sadistic, as your foes will be able to get the jump on you from places you won't even imagine. You can spend your time checking every corner only to have a wave of enemies teleport in to the centre of the room and destroy you. You can somehow survive that horde on skill and instinct, just to get picked off by a chaingunner that was lurking in an unchecked corner when you're making a dash for the nearest medkit. Damaging floors and crushers very effectively limit your available space in quite a lot of maps, and half the time a brutal attack can appear out of nowhere and you won't even always know why. This is proper difficulty we're dealing with here, so you really do have to fight to survive. Health tends to be at a premium too (whilst ammo is in abundance if you look around a bit), so be prepared to die often. Trial and error got me through most of the time, and I'd probably have actually enjoyed myself more on the lower difficulties from the start.

    The above gameplay experience takes place in three or four distinct themes. Techbases are Doom 3 inspired, so they feature a lot of darkness and strobe lighting, with squared off rooms that occasionally give way to fleshy tunnels and some atmosphere building mindfucks, with silent teleports causing the environment to alter rapidly and without warning. Hell mixes between fire-and-brimstone caves; red voids littered with floating rocks; and Plutonia-esque structures of wood, stone, and brick. Of particular note are the giant views you get to take in, as well as some large, open arenas. There are also some brown rocky levels that tend to mix caves and open-sky areas with a few small techbase parts, and the later levels centre around an archaeological dig, which effectively blends all three themes together.

    The one thing I feel obliged to say here is that this isn't perfect. The text files aren't particularly well written (so the lengthy story and notes for each map aren't quite the good read they should be), and this does also show up in the text lumps (I took a screenshot of the MAP07 text to show you what I mean). The DeHackEd/MAPINFO combo seems very strange to me and is also broken for the first 5-6 levels or so. There's no music for most of the maps, and although most map names are changed in the automap, none are changed in the intermission screen. There seems to be some sort of error in the TEXTURE1 lump, which flags up in the ZDoom console - this might explain the missing textures still present when using plutonia.wad (EGSUPRT3 is a notable offender here). Finally, things in the maps don't always seem to work perfectly. It's possible to get trapped permanently in MAP14 due to a switch being G1 when it's quite likely to be hit before required, and other maps have some monsters never show up. On a more subjective note, some of the traps are bullshit - particularly ones where you're teleported into the middle of a horde, or others where a Revenant or whatever is spawned right in front of your face.

    Overall, my verdict is to look past these imperfections. I can't recommend you try the experience I had unless you're a masochist, but if you give it a go on HMP or HNTR then I think you're in for an epic adventure that is well worth the download. Apologies for this gargantuan review - there is a lot of .WAD here to talk about, and I honestly have an awful lot more that I could mention!

  • Teleporter Station - bgoodsell
    Custom IWAD - Doom64 EX - Solo Play - 268788 bytes - (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    One map for Doom64 EX 2.0. It's a tech base map. Once you start it, you're greeted to a seemingly empty base devoid of all monsters. There's a switch puzzle you have to solve involving teleporting the blue key, and as soon as you do that, some monsters appear. Unfortunately, after you kill them, things go quiet around the base again. Turns out in this map, monsters only appear when you grab a key or make something happen. There's a lot of backtracking and running through empty hallways trying to figure out how to teleport the keys correctly in order to grab them, and it's really annoying after awhile. There's no clues given as to where you should go next, and sometimes switches activate or don't activate based on the current progress of the map. It's very easy to get lost/confused.

    I highly recommend enabling the Doom 64 EX feature that shows on the automap where the keys are, as otherwise there's no way to tell where the teleports are taking the keys. The base is relatively small but keeps teleporting in monsters. The monster usage and gameplay is average at best. By the time I figured out how the map's logic worked and finally got the red key, I was already frustrated with it. It's too bad, because if this had just been a traditional map it would have been just fine. You can probably pass on this one.

  • Damned Speed - Vasek "(The_)Damned" Havranek
    Doom 2 - Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 42679 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
    All right, this map I've decide to play (and review) is really confusing.

    First, the zip of the level was placed by Ty in the /doom directory. So, thinking that this map was made for that game, to my big surprise,I found nothing checking all the maps, so I checked the textfile, and it says it is for Doom 2, and Boom compatible... so I opened DOSBox and playedthis map with Boom 2.02, and I've got a texture problem, since it uses ASHWALL texture somewhere, so I get a Doom 1 textures for Doom 2 pack and try again, and what I got after the start screen is shown in the 1st shot: a hilarious huge HOM effect, awesome! Same thing happens at the end of the level (4th shot), where the ASHWALL is. I don't known why the author didn't add a texture pack for this.

    Apart from this funny fact, the level itself is nicely done to be a speed map experiment; the texturing is pretty cool and had some TNT feel to it, due tothe usage of gray tech textures and cold SP_ROCK1 and ASHWALL cave/mountain. The gameplay is a bit hard, and a thing that makes me moan is the author givessparse bullets (in the northern room, I found myself fighting with my bare fist against 2 cacos and a PE), and doesn't supply health AT ALL (almost, I didn't find any on HMP), and this makes me pissed off.

    So, in the end, this could be a cool map, but unluckily it was ruined by buggy HOMs and bad choice of bullet/heath balancing, so play it if you really want to...

  • Church - Arch
    Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 5505336 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Phobus
    A sequel to We're All Dead Here, which was in turn a sequel to Evil Journey Plan "A". Looks like Arch's very slowly building up a megaWAD! Good thing too, as I love his work - including Church. From the brilliant TITLEPIC (screenshot 01) through to the very end of the map (which plays on MAP09), what Church does is ooze atmosphere. As you can see from the screenshots, the majority of the gameplay takes place within the main part of the church itself, which slowly transforms from a bright, clean place of worship to a demonic, corpse-strewn blasphemy. There's a couple of areas outside of this, such as the run up to the exit and a brief glance at freedom in the open air, but about 90% of your time will be spent trapped in the arena, with doors telling you're they're "locked" or "still locked" (screenshot 07).

    The transforming arena naturally plays host to wave-based combat, with supplies and enemies spawning in after certain prompts are achieved. Sometimes the music will pick up to a more lively pace to mirror the occasionally strobing lights and more frantic moments. Other times you'll be mired in cold darkness hoping to spot the next enemy before it gets you.

    It's not all great, however. Some of the atmospherically slow elevators are actually just too slow. There's a secret radsuit that will probably wear off before it's of any use, simply because the elevator out of where you get it takes so long. Likewise, the emphasis on lighting means you spend half your time fighting in pitch darkness or a dim strobing orange light. Whilst this does work from an atmosphere point of view, it does make finding that one cacodemon that's lurking in the rafters that bit more annoying. The initial wave of enemies (which is introduced brilliantly) doesn't have any health accompanying it, so that was probably the closest encounter I had (see the screenshot of me with 1% health) - although a couple of the later, difficult fights did actually kill me outright, they were quite easy to win when approached properly, hence not feeling as cheap.

    Also, to quote Cyb in one of the Zort maps "It's that damn cricket again!" It'd appear to have followed me from Phobos all the way to a haunted church. We really need to hear that sound effect less...

    In conclusion: Church is not without its flaws, but anybody who enjoyed Arch's previous works will probably love this map. It looks pretty nice, makes good use of ZDoom and makes for a good bit of arena-based combat.

  • Coadjutor to the Stars. - char *Colin_Mitchell = send_handle( "Radtard" );
    Doom 2 - Vanilla - Solo Play - 63664 bytes
    Reviewed by: Kirby
    Welp, this appears to be a re-upload of http://www.doomworld.com/idgames/?f...m2/a-c/coad.zip from back in 2009. Why Perseus thought this needed re-uploading is beyond me.

    It even already has its own /newstuff entry -http://www.doomworld.com/vb/doomwor...chronicles-338/.

  • The Phobos Directive - The Persecution Complex
    Ultimate Doom - GZDoom - Solo Play - 29971575 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Phobus
    I've read a lot of hate for this project, so it caught my interest. Some people claim it's the worst release in 2011, and others endlessly nitpick the visuals... frankly I don't see where this has all come from. Having just spent about 3 hours max-ing the entire mapset, I can safely say I really enjoyed it.

    The Phobos Directive is a 9 map hub (centred on E1M1, as shown in screenshot 01) for GZDoom 1.5.6 (or later) which makes heavy use of its features. You'll be jumping, crouching and swimming as you make your way through the fairly 3D environments, battling a range of altered, standard and new baddies with your potentially-pimped-out arsenal. This seems to take the idea of "classic ZDoom map" and run with it, so naturally your first quest is to activate a generator (does the UAC engineer these to fail at the mere thought of a demonic invasion?) before embarking on a switch and key hunt across vaguely-familiar but infinitely more difficult renditions of all 9 of the original E1 maps. I personally found this story-driven approach worked well, mostly because it ensured you got to see everything you needed to and made very good use of the hub system, with the objective-based gameplay being particularly well implemented.

    Each map has a purpose in the overall progression, but they also have large, optional secret areas which reward an exploring player - something I really appreciated. If you don't fancy working it all out yourself, there is a secrets guide included as well as a README that will introduce to the majority of the extra features you can expect to contend with. This struck me as a nice touch, as I know a major problem with ZDoom map development is that people don't always understand all of the extra options available to them - particularly with jumping and crouching.

    Moving on to aesthetics - something of a bugbear for a lot of the people I've seen giving opinions - I liked them myself. The architecture is so curvy it's practically voluptuous, and the use of brightmaps is fantastic, really giving computer screens and toxic goo the glow that they should have. The general look is quite clean, but with some very intricate machinery (screenshot 02) in place which actually worked well for me - you weren't tripping over things when running and gunning, but there very technical bits sitting around to give it a good industrial tech theme. Things like overhead pipes and racks of crates tended to be used well in secrets and exploration (a bit like Half-Life) and the use of motifs and certain structures throughout the mapset gave it a real cohesive feel, like it had all been built by one company. Special mention goes to pretty lighting effects as seen in screenshot 06, as well as some rooms just really coming together to look great, like screenshot 09, which shows a part of E1M6. The one thing I felt never did look right was outside areas, which tended to have random lumps of sloped terrain sitting on otherwise flat ground. Another exterior issue is showcased in screenshot 05, where the light blinking in the windows where there's fog just looks wrong. As the majority of the gameplay is indoors though, it's not too much of an issue.

    How does it play? It starts off as a real ballbuster, with the enhanced zombies really hammering your health unless you resort to cowardly tactics. As you progress (particularly if you're finding secrets) you end up actually being quite comfortable, until the big arena fight at the end of E1M8... at which point anything goes, really. Depends how you're stocked for inventory items and how well you keep up with the spawned-in ammo. I really didn't like the Undead Imp (screenshot 03), which struck me as an ugly recolour that sported cheap attacks. Likewise the "Duke of Mayhem" (Hellknight) was also rather unsightly. I did, however, really like the Sand Demon - particularly when one threw itself off a ledge at me! The weapon upgrades all work as an added secondary fire, which isn't always successful. The shotgun alt-fire is sped up to KZDoom2 levels, which actually really helps against the tougher traps and scattered hitscanners, evening up what can otherwise be some real bullshit on occasion. The chaingun alt-fire sounds really weak, but basically gives you an M16, which is again useful for picking off hitscanners and individual tougher enemies. The rocket launcher upgrade was too slow to be useful against anything other than individual Dukes most of the time, as the charging up tended to make me stand still (so I didn't blow myself up). Plasma gun alt-fire gives you a poor man's BFG... which I'm not sure was actually much use most of the time to be honest. While I'm picking holes in the gameplay, I'll also mention that the use of 3D floors as windows meant that enemies would sometimes gleefully depopulate themselves for you whilst you watched, completely unhittable. It also has the rather typical ZDoom experience of "you do something, enemies spawn". While this wasn't always a bad thing, I generally preferred it when the monsters were strategically placed in the map already.

    Sound and music also drew a fair few complaints - most of which I'd agree with. The music included is pretty cool in a cheesy metal kind of way, but only plays at certain prompts. Sometimes what those prompts are isn't obvious, so you get a brief pause whilst GZDoom loads up the requested track and only later discover why you're being treated to some soundtrack for a brief while (E1M3, I'm looking at you). Also, whilst I don't mind a bit of ambience, why the hell are there crickets chirping throughout a moon base? It just doesn't feel right at all.

    Now, don't get me wrong. The Phobos Directive isn't the best thing that's ever happened to us. However, as a "modern" take on E1 that makes good use of the GZDoom extended features catalogue, it does a good job. I liked it and I reckon a fair few other (G)ZDoom players will enjoy it too.

  • Yume Nikki deathmatch V1 - T.Capricous
    Doom 2 - Skulltag - Deathmatch - 21716237 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: walter confalonieri
    Hello, so this is a map unreviewed for so long that needs some good soul to play it, so here I am to review to this "death match" map pack, Yume Nikki Deathmatch!

    I already quoted this game in a previous episode of Lost... erm /newstuff, actually in the black widow one (#398); so in this game you have to explore various weird, surreal dreamy places with this little girl called Matsoduki and help her to come back from the dream world, and here's a selection of the best parts of that game, converted in the magic of 2.5D!

    And did the author make a good work? Personally, I think not.

    The impression this project gave me is of an incomplete and cramped project that looks like some of the cream of the crap of 1994 Doom deathmatch maps (usage of monsters even in DM, huge level size, cramped placement of the guns and sometimes they're not even there), the layout is cramped and huge, without any place to hide and seek against your opponents, and gameplay really sucks, since there is very FEW usage of guns, and isn't funny to be chased by a uboa and trying to shoot at him with your ordinary guns, and also the other enemies!

    But let's talk better about the six worlds of Yume Nikki the author chose to port into the Doom engine!

    MAP01: "The White Desert" is a very large room filled with MFLR8_3 and black walls everywhere. Reach the white mountain at the northern edge of the map, kill an archvile with your spit and pass to the next stage. Groovy!

    MAP02: This map could be the next thing to Eternall maps, but unluckily crashes (also using the most recent 0.98e alpha). The music is really catchy!

    MAP03: A huge lava pit with jumping stairs that leads to another platform... also uses the weirdest sprite for changing the cacodemon sprites.

    MAP05: A huge maze with metal and tech textures.

    MAP10: The Matsoduki room, actually from where the game begins. It was really converted badly! You find yourself inside this crap brown room that leads you to a courtyard with a broken exit and the message behind the palace, "Thanks Uboachan"! Yeah sure, thanks for approving this piece of crap!

    And yes, no relevant guns and items/power-ups inside this map pack! Avoid this piece of crap at all costs!

  • VooDoo Guns - Alexander "Eternal" S. (aka Deadall)
    Doom 2 - GLBoom-Plus 2.5.1.2 or GZDoom SVN r1266 (or later) - Solo Play - 141672793 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Phobus
    I've always liked playing Eternal's works. They always seem to bring a new (for him) theme to the table and have lots of little changes that are completely unnecessary, but cool to have all the same. For instance, zombiemen with sunglasses. There's no need for this, it's just cool.

    Sure enough, Voodoo Guns is new and different. It's a very high-res world, with .ogg music and a sort of western/steampunk/horror theme, which came across to me as a bit tongue-in-cheek when I saw things like a poster telling me "Loose lips taste like chicken" and picking up the titular Voodoo Gun (BFG9000 reskin) treated me to an Army of Darkness quote ("Good, bad..."). Oh, and the fact that drinking 3 or 4 health potions (bottles of Jack Daniel's Single Barrel) gets you drunk (gives you the berserk powerup). The TITLEPIC (screenshot 01) is worthy of note too, just because it sums up the whole "Rule of Cool" thing I see in a lot of what Eternal does.

    Now, I played this in GZDoom (the latest compiled SVN on drdteam.org at the time of writing) and had a hard time believing this was all done with MBF compatible features and a liberal dose of OpenGL (hence the very limited source port choices). We've got transparency, some solid DeHackEd work, events that feel scripted and doors that slide sideways. We come rolling into a giant city on a train. This "Dark City" forms the first map and it initially works as an exploration, with slightly creepy black ghosts blissfully ignoring you (screenshot 05). Then you find a building you can explore and all hell quickly breaks loose. I won't lie - this gameplay experience isn't too good, as it's essentially an empty city map (which looks great, mind) to begin with and then it's a big open arena afterwards, with a lot of the enemies in the map just coming in waves when the few building-interior sections are being approached.

    As an overall experience though, MAP01 works well for me. It looks good, it has atmosphere, the music changes to something more action-oriented when the city transforms into a hellish battleground and the ending sequence with the "gloopy" ride down the river just felt right - as if I'd been expelled from this city and had to find elsewhere. MAP02 is reached through a horse ride (which you don't play) and it's simply called Ghost Town. Screenshot 08 shows the sky and general atmosphere we're treated to. The music really does well here too, with an almost ambient feel that ends up culminating in a crescendo. I think the music changes at least twice in this map - again, to suit how frantic things get.

    The ghost town is more puzzle-oriented, although it felt more intuitive to me than MAP01 did to start out. You do get a cool boss fight and a fair bit of gunplay against some rather speedy zombie/bounty hunter types (they use the Caleb sprites from Blood). The wide open spaces in this map do tend to make the fighting quite easy, which is probably why half of the enemies are encountered in buildings at close quarters.

    Criticisms? Screenshot 06 shows a clear mapping error, the chaingun looks ugly (screenshot 11) and the low resolution liquid textures stand out against the rest of the environment (screenshot 03). However, the biggest flaw for me is that it plays all right, but looks, sounds and feels fantastic. Considering that it's a pretty big download for a Doom .WAD, the two maps probably can't be realistically expected to last for more than half an hour or so for most players. If that half an hour was some of the best game play you could have, I'd be very enthusiastically asking why you haven't all played it already. As it is though, I'd say to try it out for yourself - if your computer can handle it - as it's really worth soaking up the experience.

  • Tooth and Claw - David J. Finnamore
    Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 53388 bytes - (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Kirby
    This one isn't anything to write home about. By its description it is "Simple and classic" and the architecture absolutely abides by this. Very simple detail with mostly bare corridors and one room with an eye-appeasing structure in the middle is about all you get with this one. Since the level is rather short, I'm not going to complain about the architecture too much - at the least there is SOMETHING there.

    The gameplay on the other hand is slim. I say this because the only real monsters you have to fight are inside a winding corridor. The demons at the beginning can be skipped and you can simply avoid anything else that shows up in the main courtyard (including those hidden behind the skull key doors). Simple? Sure. Classic? Only if it meant skipping 80% of the monsters in a level.

    I get the feeling David J. Finnamore can do more, so I'll see what else he has. This one is not much, however.

  • Team Fortress Mod - Chaosvolt
    Doom 2 - ZDoom Compatible - SP/DM - 7615 bytes
    Reviewed by: Phobus
    Here we have a "mutator" that tries to recreate the Heavy, Scout, Soldier, Pyro and Sniper from Team Fortress Classic, using just Decorate, for ZDoom compatible ports. No new graphics or sounds here, so it's a light download. I played the 1.1 release, which was made to address some of the whining (my words, not his) on the Doomworld /idgames front-end. Consequently I got to experience each class with 4 weapons, which have had additional balancing for co-op and deathmatch.

    The health, speed and weapon differences between the classes are much as you'd expect (the text file lists this all out, so I'll not go into detail here), and as each class starts off fully stocked for ammo (although do look out for backpacks) and with all 4 weapons the differences are pretty clear. We have problems though. The Sniper suffers from ammo shortages easily, due to only being limited to cells and bullets. The Heavy is slow and his minigun sprays ammo too inaccurately and quickly to be of any use most of the time, limiting him to using the shotgun and SSG most of the time. The Soldier is easy to overwhelm if the range is too close for his rocket launcher, as he's only got the two shotguns, which aren't fast enough when a couple of bigger enemies or a lot of hitscanners have you trapped. The Scout has no real firepower and low health. The one that seems to have it easy is the Pyro ,as his flaming rocket launcher and flamethrower seem to have pretty good damage output (plus he's immune to the flames) - ammo is the only potential issue he might have, causing him to fall back on the shotgun, which can't always be relied on.

    Basically, this doesn't really work in single player for Doom 2. I played MAP01 and a random mid-late map for each class and found the weapon sets weren't balanced internally to handle the cast of monsters. I think this would work alright with an abundance of ammo in SP, but I reckon the real meat of the experience would be either co-op (trying to overcome the classes' weaknesses with team work) or DM (as the anti-player capabilities should be fine). I can't see this being "the next big thing" on Skulltag though.

  • Come Sail Away - David J. Finnamore
    Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 247351 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    One map for Doom 2. It's a map where at first you're going around on Earth, shooting some ugly ass demons from hell, but then later, you go on an alien spaceship. And shoot ... the exact same demons from hell. Makes no sense, but oh well, let's just go with it.

    The first part is OK. It's when you get on the spaceship that things start to turn ugly. The map becomes extremely claustrophobic, I guess in order to fit the map into the circular saucer area. Hallways become extremely tight and constricted. Detailing and texturing also take a nose dive. Worse, enemies start popping out of wall closets and there's no room to dodge their attacks. One of the hallways in particular I was down to almost no health or ammo and it was still throwing shit at me. I imagine this point will have a lot of players either save/loading like crazy, or quitting the map in disgust.

    Surprisingly, after this point it actually gets much easier, giving the player much more health/ammo and reducing the monster closet count. The difficulty is very unbalanced in this regard. Overall I can't really recommend this map, as the first part is just an average city/base map, and the second part on the spaceship is annoying and cramped.

  • Doom utilities source - Id Software uploaded by Simon Howard
    N/A - N/A - N/A - 147511 bytes
    Reviewed by: Gez
    Sometime during 1998, id Software shared with the people at DOSDoom a zip of a directory containing the source code for several utilities developed at id Software for creating Doom. It was then lost when the DOSDoom site was reshuffled around before eventually going offline, but a copy had been uploaded to AtomicGamer. More recently, it was rediscovered and uploaded to the /idgames archive as is right and proper.

    This is a nearly complete collection of id's homemade tools; it is only missing DoomEd, The Fuzzy Pumper Palette Shop, and DoomBSP, but this last one had already been released separately. So what is included exactly?
  • cmdlib: some functions to deal with command line parameters, including manipulating file names, loading and saving, parsing hex numbers, endianness functions to deal with the fact NeXT and PC don't write their bytes in the same order, and some function to change screen mode and select palette.
  • cmpfile: pretty simple program to look for differences between two files. The algorithm merely perform a byte-by-byte comparison.
  • dcolors: now this gets interesting. This loads an .lbm image as input to extract its palette (the picture itself is irrelevant) and then creates a Doom-compliant palette lump from it (including all the palette shifts for getting hurt, picking up bonus items, or wearing the radiation shielding suit) as well as a colormap lump. We can see the exact algorithms and values used for generating these lumps, and from commented-out code we can also piece out how the hi-color mode from the early Doom alphas was supposed to work.
  • doomdata.h: just some format definitions, basically the same thing as what's in the Doom source code file with the same name.
  • grabcmds: some picture conversion functions for various formats; used by lumpy. Some of the code was developed for other works, such as the SNES or Jaguar ports of Wolfenstein.
  • info.c, info.h: same as in Doom source code.
  • infogen: a tool used to generate info.c and info.h from a script. Not the one used for Doom, however.
  • jaggrab: Atari Jaguar-specific code for grabcmds.
  • jwadlink: Atari Jaguar version of wadlink.
  • lmblib: code to read and write interleaved bitmap images.
  • lumpy: a.k.a. spitwad apparently. A program that converts files into a lump format (mostly, pictures) and can spit them as standalone files or as lumps within a wad. Can work from scripts.
  • lz77, lzlib, ulz77: library for LZ77 compression. This was used notably for the Jaguar port of Doom. The id crew made some modifications as evidenced by the presence of backup copies of the original libraries.
  • mapcomp: compresses a wad's maps by replacing texture names into texture index in sidedefs. Interestingly, sectors do not have their flat names replaced by index: only sidedefs are crunched by this program. Anyway, this ended up not being used.
  • mobjinfo.c, mobjinfo.h: apparently an earlier version of info.c and info.h, generated by a tool named makeinfo. The pickups and most decorative objects aren't listed, but an interesting point of trivia is that apparently the cacodemons were originally planned to have two different projectiles: there are separate mobj definitions for MT_HEADSHOT (5 damage) and MT_BIGHEADSHOT (8 damage).
  • multigen: the merging of mobjinfo/infogen and statescr. The good part is that its input script (multigen.txt) is part of the archive. There are some mildly interesting comments in that file. Why are the POL? decorations called Freds? And are the hanging corpses made from pictures of G.I. Joe toys?
  • removecontrolm: just some tiny utility to deal with the hassle of converting new line markers between the DOS and NeXT platforms. This replaces all "carriage return" control characters (ASCII code 13) into spaces in the given files.
  • scriplib: a tokenizer used for their script parsers.
  • spitwad: a copy of lumpy with a different name.
  • states.c, states.h: the ouput of statescr. In the Doom source code, this corresponds to parts of info.c and info.h.
  • statescr: tool for generating states.c and states.h from a script. Like for makeinfo/infogen and wadlink, we can see its output but not the input scripts it was fed.
  • unfuck: behind this cute and delicate name is another utility to deal with the woes of cross-platform development: it fixes file permissions in an entire directory hierarchy.
  • wadlink: the tool used to build a wad file from a bunch of lumps laying around as individual files. The input script files used to build Doom are not included, but the source releases for Heretic and Hexen do include the relevant files if anybody is interested.
  • backup: a directory containing backup copies of the aforementioned files.
    Overall, it is of rather limited interest to most people, but it can serve as useful reference document for coders. I know if I had had dcolors at the time, I could have saved a lot of time when working on fine-tuning the palette generator for SLADE 3.

  • Wonderful Doom, v.1.3 - Wraith
    Ultimate Doom - Vanilla - Solo Play - 1715361 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    Four episodes for Doom. It's yet another classic Doom remake/tribute/whatever you want to call it. Most of the layouts are similar enough to the originals that it feels identical, even if it's not 100%. In some cases they actually feel dumbed down and simplified compared to the originals. The few areas that are significantly different aren't particularly interesting. Unless you're a die hard classic map fan, you'll probably want to pass on this one.

  • bas chateau - R Hewitt
    Doom 2 - Limit Removing - Solo Play - 42698 bytes - (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    One map for Doom 2. This map just screams "My first Doombuilder project". It looks and plays worse than a '94 map. The same floor/wall texture is used everywhere across the entire map, the map/monster layout makes no sense, and the gameplay is horribly unbalanced. The readme says it was made in 1 1/2 hours, and it shows. There is no reason to play this map. Avoid!

Does this /newstuff Chronicles suck? Does your wise ass think you can write better reviews than these jerkoffs? Then get over to the /newstuff Review Center and help out. I know you must have a Doomworld Forums account because you like griping about every edition in the comment thread, but if you don't, you need to get one to submit reviews.

Old Post 02-17-12 01:40 #
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40oz
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Sheesh udderdude, you seem to be taking a lot of grief out on these wads.

Old Post 02-17-12 02:58 #
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fiend-o-hell
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Yay, Another /newstuff!

I can always rely on a Phobus review for that comprehensive thorough examination of a wad. Can't say Hell Awakening pics wowed me, but I'll give it a go after everything I read.

Also awesome job Arch on Church.I couldn't help but idclip through those insufferably slow lifts sections, but its an otherwise outstanding map!

Been meaning to get around to Voodoo Guns, its just that its quite a big download and I was unable to run it before...until now. It only runs with a GZdoom SVN build (duh!). Wasn't this EDGE?

David J. Finnamore's Tooth and Claw was enjoyable after the first part. Come Sail Away was a much stronger entry from this author. I dig his classical, minimilistic style of mapping.

Man so much to try out... The Phobos Directive, Teleporter Station, programming USB dildo devices with DOOM EXTERNAL CONTROL API!!!!

Old Post 02-17-12 05:53 #
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hex11
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I think bas chateau looks okay, but doesn't seem like it needs limit-removing port (detail isn't that high).

Edit: well I just played through with Chocolate Doom, so that confirms this is a pure vanilla map. The only bug I noticed was minor: the blue key is on some crates in the middle of a nukage sector, but the crates are also of "damaging" sector types. Also this is actually a pretty decent map, despite the minimal texturing.

Last edited by hex11 on 02-17-12 at 12:36

Old Post 02-17-12 07:23 #
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printz
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What a glorious /newstuff this week!

Old Post 02-17-12 10:10 #
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DeathevokatioN
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Phobus' reviews really seemed to hit the nail on the head.


Phobus said:
I've read a lot of hate for this project, so it caught my interest. Some people claim it's the worst release in 2011, and others endlessly nitpick the visuals... frankly I don't see where this has all come from. Having just spent about 3 hours max-ing the entire mapset, I can safely say I really enjoyed it.
Like a boss. ;)

I also felt the treatment of Phobus Directive was a little unfair. Someone with a high standing in the forum trashes it then a ton of hyenas jump on the bandwagon, I'm not saying that not everyone had a legitimate claim though.

Old Post 02-17-12 10:22 #
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Phobus
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fiend-o-hell said:
Been meaning to get around to Voodoo Guns, its just that its quite a big download and I was unable to run it before...until now. It only runs with a GZdoom SVN build (duh!). Wasn't this EDGE?

I've seen no evidence of it being for EDGE, but Eternal reckons the next proper Risen3D release may be capable of handling all the features Voodoo Guns uses as well as GLBoom-plus and GZDoom.


DeathevokatioN said:
...Phobus Directive...

Ha - I'm corrupting your spelling :P


Thanks for the positive feedback on the reviews, people! I was concerned that the hundreds of words I was churning out on reviewing all of these huge .WADs may have been a bit much, so I've been trying to cut things down and make my points more concisely. Still ended up with a couple of pages of A4 in Word '07 for "Hell Awakened..." and The Phobos Directive though.

I was pretty impressed with the sheer number of reviews udderdude has been getting done recently. I was kind of interested in Wonderful Doom 1.3, but now I'm not so sure as his review doesn't make it seem worth checking out. Hmmm...

EDIT: Oh, and thank you very much Gez for that review of the Doom Utilities Source. As a programmer I found that very interesting.

Last edited by Phobus on 02-17-12 at 11:10

Old Post 02-17-12 10:44 #
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DeathevokatioN
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Phobus said:
Ha - I'm corrupting your spelling :P
Hehehehe damn I think that could be the funniest spelling mistake I've ever made, I have no clue how that one found it's way through the security gates. :P

I really need to get spellcheck one day.

Old Post 02-17-12 11:21 #
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Vermil
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Hell Awakened review said:
this might explain the missing textures still present when using plutonia.wad (EGSUPRT3 is a notable offender here).


EGSUPRT3 is a TNT texture.

It appears Hell Awakened uses textures from both TNT and Plutonia.

The TEXTURE 1/2 lumps included in the wad also only seem to include the all new textures (i.e it contains no information for the Doom2/TNT/Plutonia textures).

All this means it's a wad that requires a port that can load multiple TEXTURE 1/2 lumps.

Last edited by Vermil on 02-17-12 at 12:37

Old Post 02-17-12 12:31 #
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Phobus
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Ah - thanks for the explanation. I have to admit I don't understand editing TEXTURE1 and related very well, so I had no idea what was going on there.

Old Post 02-17-12 13:09 #
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Phobus said:
but Eternal reckons the next proper Risen3D release may be capable of handling all the features Voodoo Guns uses as well as GLBoom-plus and GZDoom.


I can confirm this. The next version of Risen3D - v2.2.13 - is fully capable of playing this wad as intended.

Old Post 02-18-12 03:32 #
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40oz said:
Sheesh udderdude, you seem to be taking a lot of grief out on these wads.


I would have written some kinder words had I ended up reviewing something like Church. Just finished playing it, completed it w/o dying on my first try but it was still pretty taxing at times. Excellent atmosphere and pacing. I agree with the review though, those crickets really need to go.

Old Post 02-18-12 03:34 #
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Xaser
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Phobus said:
[B]I was pretty impressed with the sheer number of reviews udderdude has been getting done recently. I was kind of interested in Wonderful Doom 1.3, but now I'm not so sure as his review doesn't make it seem worth checking out. Hmmm...

I wasn't going to say anything until I read this, but... what review? It basically got skipped over with a giant, effortless "meh." I know it's been released once before, meaning a "this is an update; here's a brief summary" would've been just fine. Doesn't seem to be the case, though.

It's a pretty cool wad, I think, and an interesting concept for sure. The maps all sport a surreal sort of 'deja vu' feeling, and the layouts are different enough from the originals to keep players on their toes. I'd recommend checking it out for sure. It's the original "alternate reality Doom" wad, before DTWID. :P

...I feel as if I've already said more about the wad than the review did. o_O

Old Post 02-18-12 19:45 #
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Xaser said:
meaning a "this is an update; here's a brief summary" would've been just fine.
Indeed, failing to mention that this is an updated release of a very well-known wad is a major omission. The normal thing to do in that case is mention what has changed (and review that if there is anything substantial to review) and maybe link to a previous review.

Old Post 02-18-12 19:55 #
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Thanks for the positive points in review of my map. I tested it and it is playable with pistol start, but it isn't easy.
Unfortunately I forgot to test it properly (it was speedmap, i tried to make it ASAP).
I would like to highlight, I definitely used only Doom2.wad and only textures from that iwad. I am sure I didn't use ASHWALL. I used ASHWALL2. I think that my DB2 (I've reinstalled it recently) used ASHWALL as default texture and it put this texture on some places where they are hidden (like lower texture even there is visible only upper texture). During the testing I didn't realize any problem in prBoom or Zdoom, but it looks that it is issue in Boom.
I think I should release updated version. :)

Old Post 02-18-12 22:12 #
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Grazza said:
Indeed, failing to mention that this is an updated release of a very well-known wad is a major omission. The normal thing to do in that case is mention what has changed (and review that if there is anything substantial to review) and maybe link to a previous review.


I had actually searched for it on Doomworld and didn't find a /newstuff review for it. Searching again, I did find one. Seems like that review was much kinder than mine.

Again, my standards are higher than most and if I see what's basically a near identical rehash of the original Doom maps with a few not-so-great changes here and there, I'm going to call it what it is. I did mention die-hard classic map fans may enjoy it, which is prob. true. You'd be better off just replaying the originals IMO ..


Xaser said:

and the layouts are different enough from the originals to keep players on their toes. I'd recommend checking it out for sure. It's the original "alternate reality Doom" wad, before DTWID. :P



The layouts are not different enough, and DTWID is a completely different concept - using ID's design decisions and ideas to make entirely new maps, not just copy their original ones and make a few minor changes.

And for the record, I actually did like DTWID quite a bit, for exactly the reasons I just mentioned.

Last edited by udderdude on 02-19-12 at 13:57

Old Post 02-19-12 13:37 #
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kristus
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udderdude said:
Again, my standards are higher than most
Well, that's extremely pretentious of you. While that might be what you think, it's not necessarily in sync with reality. A more intellectually honest thing to say would be that you have different standards than most. Which certainly is something I can relate to.

Old Post 02-19-12 15:11 #
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DooMAD
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Are there still no guidelines on the sizes for submitted screenshots? We've got everything from 320x200 to twenteen bajillion x eleventy fucking infinity. Something a bit more standardised plz. I'm almost tempted to suggest using HTML to resize them artificially, even though it would screw up aspect ratios.

Old Post 02-19-12 19:53 #
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Oh ffs, how do I turn off or mute the music in Phobos Directive? It's way too loud and driving me crazy.

Old Post 02-19-12 20:14 #
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It's played with sound effects...

Old Post 02-19-12 20:28 #
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kristus said:
Well, that's extremely pretentious of you. While that might be what you think, it's not necessarily in sync with reality. A more intellectually honest thing to say would be that you have different standards than most. Which certainly is something I can relate to.

Do you do anything else here other than nit-pick reviews? While I appreciated your comments on my reviews even if I didn't agree with them, maybe you should write a few reviews yourself so we can point out everything that was wrong, although if I were critiquing you, I'd put "in my opinion" after the inflammatory statements. If you have written reviews, I apologise, I don't usually pay attention to who reviews what.


40oz said:
Sheesh udderdude, you seem to be taking a lot of grief out on these wads.

I personally think reviews that trash maps are more entertaining to read as long as they don't insult the original mapper or start a flame war. Sometimes you don't say a map is challenged with regard to fun and aesthetic entertainment, you have to say it's a load of bobbins.

Old Post 02-19-12 20:31 #
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kristus
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MajorRawne said:
Do you do anything else here other than nit-pick reviews? While I appreciated your comments on my reviews even if I didn't agree with them,
Yes, sure you do. You don't act butt hurt at all.

MajorRawne said:
maybe you should write a few reviews yourself so we can point out everything that was wrong, although if I were critiquing you, I'd put "in my opinion" after the inflammatory statements.
Not butt hurt at all.

Old Post 02-19-12 21:06 #
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I just read an insulting comment about a reviewer then recognised your user name as the poster. To be honest I have got better things to do than get upset about something that happened on the internet, I just wonder if you appreciate the irony of trashing people who trash maps. I doubt you lack the subtlety or sophistication to do this despite your eloquent words (apart from the butt-hurt part).

If it will help smooth things over, I could act like I care?

Old Post 02-19-12 21:47 #
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MajorRawne said:
I could act like I care?

You already do.

Old Post 02-19-12 22:52 #
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kristus said:
butt hurt
This isn't 4chan. If you can't at least try to post like an adult, don't post at all.

Old Post 02-20-12 06:09 #
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Gez said:
It's played with sound effects...
So the whole volume is controlled by a single channel (that of sound effects)? FAIL.

[sorry if I don't know what I'm talking about, but I like how it sounded]

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Old Post 02-20-12 12:45 #
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printz said:
So the whole volume is controlled by a single channel (that of sound effects)? FAIL.

[sorry if I don't know what I'm talking about, but I like how it sounded]



Precisely. It's especially bad on E1M3 where the music can trigger multiple times and said music is MAP30 from Evilution.

Old Post 02-20-12 12:51 #
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kristus
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Bloodshedder said:
This isn't 4chan. If you can't at least try to post like an adult, don't post at all.
Wo, that's some major bullshit. I don't hang out at 4chan, so I don't know what kind of lingo is prevalent there, but but if you think that avoiding using apt expressions because it somehow makes you feel "more mature" then you are the childish one.

Old Post 02-20-12 15:06 #
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Pride goeth before a fall.

Old Post 02-20-12 16:27 #
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Bloodshedder
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kristus said:
Wo, that's some major bullshit. I don't hang out at 4chan, so I don't know what kind of lingo is prevalent there, but but if you think that avoiding using apt expressions because it somehow makes you feel "more mature" then you are the childish one.
"Butt hurt" isn't an apt expression, it's a childish dismissal of a person's concerns. If you hadn't actually planned on answering his post, you probably shouldn't have posted anything at all.

Old Post 02-20-12 17:16 #
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