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Linguica


Posts: 4014
Registered: 05-00


Has any thought been given to where various weapons/monsters will make their first appearance in the level set? Personally I felt Doom 2 dropped the ball on this as it introduced a lot of the bigger monster and weapons much too early for my tastes. I think that we should decide on what levels each of the monsters and weapons first make an appearance in the game, so the thrill of seeing new things isn't spoiled when after a third of the game you've already seen every single monster and weapon.

STRAIN had its faults, but this was one of the things it did VERY well. You weren't given too much firepower until it was time to use it, and the introduction of new monsters was done gradually and effectively.

Old Post 10-05-01 22:15 #
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Lüt
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Well, part of this is gonna depend on what the levels are like. Since a lot of people have already started their levels, it might be best to just have them get a near-final version of the map without monsters and weapons in place, and decide all this when we get most of the level submissions into a playable WAD. It's probably asking a bit much for the mappers to not include the full onslaught of enemies until a near-final version, but there's no doubt going to be some places that will be perfect for certain monster introductions, so I suggest waiting to see the maps before randomly laying out when and where monsters and weapons will be introduced.

If we are going to lay out guidelines of which monsters and weapons will be introduced at what time, mappers can plan their maps to introduce these monsters, which may work just as well depending on how far into the level they are. It's just that enough maps are already in progress that setting up guidelines now could cause some problems for people.

If anything, I would suggest trying to keep the more powerful enemies and weapons out of the earlier maps. Excalibur_Z gave a good suggestion in the last FreeDoom update on the main page:

If it were me, I'd have it so the first 4 or so levels you'd fight with only fist and pistol (where it counts, on Ultra-Violence). Rocket Launcher with only 2 rockets comes next in the 5th level. Level after that, shotgun makes its appearance and you start getting shotgun ammo. Level 7, Chainsaw. About level 9 or so you'd get the chaingun. Level 12 you'd start getting more rockets (very rare though) to compensate for the lower amounts of barrels around. Level 14, Berserks start popping up every so often in the following levels. Level 17, BFG, with enough payload for one shot. Level 19, backpack makes its appearance (one more BFG shot). Level 22, plasma rifle and rare cell ammo. Level 25 super shotgun and more cells. That way by level 30 you're all set.
I think that's a bit extreme, but way better than how Doom2 was set up.

Old Post 10-06-01 15:40 #
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funcrusher
Warming Up


Posts: 19
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Maybe I'm stating the obvious, but in order to limit the amount of available weapons, you'd have to put off the introduction of monsters that come with weapons ---namely the shot gun sergeant and chainer. We're not going to see a sergeant or shotgun until the 6th level?

We'd have nothing but soldiers and imps with the occasional pinky for five levels? that could be monotonous. And any other monsters would be just too hard to kill; you'd have to run a lot and this would have to be taken in consideration with the layout of the level.

I'm not against this idea, just that it should be done very carefully. If done carefully and correctly, it could be
f-cking fantastic. just the right amount of difficulty, tension, true to the DooM experience.

I thought what DooM 2 did right with the difficult monsters appearing in early levels (Dead Simple comes to mind) was it dropped this bombshell on you out of nowhere, scared the hell out of you, and then backed off. Even though the plasma spiders and mancubi didn't appear with great frequency (at least not like they did in Dead Simple) knowing that they were out there made you REALLY paranoid and kept you looking over your shoulder. The problem with this was of course that you had to have powerful enough weaponry to defeat them.

I've thought of a possible solution to this conundrum: early on (but not too early, say level 7) introduce an abberantly powerful enemy (say a mancubus/sluggy) but in a way that they're easy to defeat (i/e: surrounded by barrels) or escape from (say behind a grate off in the distance).

Just a (long) thought.

Old Post 10-06-01 19:15 #
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We're not going to see a sergeant or shotgun until the 6th level? We'd have nothing but soldiers and imps with the occasional pinky for five levels? that could be monotonous.
Well, like I said, I think that guy's idea is a bit extreme.

I just think it's important that this be addressed sooner than later, because I'm doing this exact same difficulty setup for 26 already-complete levels for Doom Millennium, and it is taking FOREVER. Like, we have a double-pistol, which is in between regular pistol and chaingun in terms of firepower. But all the maps starting with level 2 had chaingunners, which rendered it a somewhat useless weapon. So I had to remove most of the chaingunners from levels 2 to 5 and substitute them with other enemies, re-test the difficulty and all that. It's the testing that really makes it a lengthy process, 'cause if you're gonna get it right, you have to start from map01 each time.

There is a way to get the more advanced enemies in early, such as shotgunners and chaingunners: just put them in a place where the player can't pick up their weapon. Behind a window, in a crevice, atop a pillar they can't fall off of, maybe on a rooftop or in a vehicle. There's plenty of ways you can put them into a map and still keep the player from getting their weapon. IMO, that's even more irritating to the player when they can't get the weapons they need even though they're right in front of them :)

I've thought of a possible solution to this conundrum: early on (but not too early, say level 7) introduce an abberantly powerful enemy (say a mancubus/sluggy) but in a way that they're easy to defeat (i/e: surrounded by barrels) or escape from (say behind a grate off in the distance).
I think the opposite way would be best: introduce them when the player is dangerously low on ammo and provide just enough to kill them. If it's done right, an Arachnotron in Map07 could be multiple times harder than the Spiderdemon in E3M8 and still be a fair fight.

Old Post 10-06-01 20:46 #
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captmellow
Junior Member


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LOL we can call it AnalRetentiveDoom. Or PissYouOffDoom. Or WishYouHadFastForwardDoom. Why not just let the mappers do their thing w/out trying to put such an oppressive stranglehold on everything? I thought this was open.

Old Post 10-12-01 06:03 #
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Lüt
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Why not just let the mappers do their thing w/out trying to put such an oppressive stranglehold on everything?
Well, if somebody turns in map06 with a few Spiderdemons and a Cyberdemon and weapons like the BFG and Plasma Rifle to beat them, and map07 is designed to use primarily the chaingun and shotgun, then the game has problems. What's gonna end up happening is that mappers are going to have to go back and change their levels around a lot for the game to even work properly if they just go on and do their maps without any idea of what comes before and after them. This is supposed to save time and make things a lot easier for the mappers, and less frustrating if they do end up having the change the way their level works or plays.

Old Post 10-12-01 07:38 #
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captmellow
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Ahah.

Old Post 10-12-01 08:02 #
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AirRaid
Graphics Zealot


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I could have sworn I'd replied to this thread....

Anyway, this doesn't really affect me, cos I'm doing map27, by which time I suspect all the weapons will have been dished out. I'm gonna put the big guns in map32, but as secrets.

Old Post 10-12-01 21:45 #
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funcrusher
Warming Up


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that might be a way for mappers to qeull their lust for weapons. If you want the BFG before level 17 it has to be a secret. VERY secret.

Old Post 10-13-01 18:52 #
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NiGHTMARE
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Why not just use the same weapon/enemy progression as the original Doom 2 levels? It worked once...

Old Post 10-15-01 13:16 #
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funcrusher
Warming Up


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Isn't the failure of Doom 2's placement the issue addressed by this thread? Read the first post.

Old Post 10-17-01 04:11 #
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NiGHTMARE
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I know, I'm just saying that to me it's perfectly fine.

Old Post 10-18-01 16:40 #
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Lazer
Member


Posts: 364
Registered: 03-01


Doom 2's progression was not good. You had accress to 3 new weapons ON THE FIRST LEVEL. I agree with Linguica on how STRAIN managed weapon and monster placement very well. It really should be more along the lines of:
Map01 - Former Humans, Imps, Maybe a shotgun or Seargent
Map02 - Shotgun, Out-of-reach chaingunners
Map03 - Chaingun
Map05 - Chainsaw
Map07 - Super Shotgun, Maybe Rocket Launcher
Map11 - Player should have Rocket Launcher by now
Map14 - Plasma Gun
Map17 or 18 - BFG
I know this didn't really include monster placement, but I think it handles weapon placement well.

Old Post 10-19-01 00:10 #
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Hyena
Unfortunately it is lethal


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I'm with you, Lazer

Well, actually, I already did map16 with all the weapons except the BFG (and chainsaw). I guess it just happens to coincide with yours.

Of course, in DM, all weapons are available.

Old Post 11-07-01 20:10 #
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AirRaid
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M'kay. The BFG will be a secret in MAP32, like it was in Doom2. Probably a nasty secret though. Only one chance to get it in the level, then it's gone/out of reach/whatever.

Old Post 11-08-01 01:42 #
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Duker900
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I like that idea airraid, but you should make some nasy evil almost impossible task to get it (like platform jumping with crushing cellings)

Old Post 11-12-01 04:57 #
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AirRaid
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Yeah, It's gonna be a bitch to get, don't worry. :) It's a wolfie stylt level, but I think I'm gonna put an extra bit in, like MAP31 in Doom2 did, with the steps and the four backpacks.

Old Post 11-12-01 19:06 #
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