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Kristian Ronge
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Map 14 -- Vertigo Plant
The setting is a large complex, floating in the sky. Gameplay is not my cup of tea: if you survive the start, you spend the first 3-5 minutes frantically running around scavenging for health and ammo while being shot at and/or ambushed by monsters constantly, from just about everywhere. After chaingun sniping Mancubuses and Arachnotrons on the surrounding floating pillars, you can finally stop having to stumble into new areas and monsters and try to focus on figuring out what to do and where to go. Which brings up another observation: There's no discernable theme here... what exactly is all this trying to represent?

Anyway, once you've found the yellow key and gone through the YK door, the progression is quite linear and gameplay gets easier, in spite of some fierce resistance, since you're given an abundance of ammo (especially plasma). Several fights throughout are, at best, ho-hum (all three boss monsters can be fought very safely), and at worst, tedious. Now, to be fair, the part after getting the blue key and all the way running up to the blue/red key door had pretty good action, and without a doubt the best fights in the map.

The map presents several places from which the player can, by accident or through curiousness, jump off the floating structure and kill himself and the author does little to prevent this; in fact, in several instances such behaviour is encouraged: the megashere secret requires a stupid jump which, if missed, means insta-death, and the same goes for the very last secret, when everything is (or should be) dead, which contains a few precious stimpaks (yes, I'm being ironic). At other times, jumping off ledges blindly may land you far ahead in the planned progression route, presenting fights for which you are hilariously underequipped. I thought it was possible to break the map progression at the end, just past the red/blue keyed door, if you jump into the ooze prior to pushing the switch in the nearby control room, but I found when looking in an editor that there's a (well hidden) way to get back up.

There are plenty of secrets, and while one or two are clever (the soulpshere, the blue armour + backpack room), some are pointless (the secret right at the very end? The berserk secret which unloaded a bunch of Revenants on me?), or -- in the case of the aforementioned megasphere secret -- downright stupid.

The map ends with a silly AV trap while exposed on a ledge, flanking you with chaingunners. Ugh. I survived this last trap on my first attempt but others will not be so lucky.

Whereas map 12, in spite of pulling a few cheap tricks and placing the player in some unfair situations, was somehow intriguing to play and was accompanied by a sense of accomplishment, this map is a one-shot for me. --2/5

Old Post 02-12-13 00:24 #
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mouldy
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13 - Underearth by sgt dopey / Matt534Dog

This was an ok map, unfortunately I played it a few hours ago and had to do other stuff, and now I have only vague memories of playing it. But i dont remember it being horrible. I died once from general carelessness but there was nothing massively dangerous in there - i do remember being a bit disappointed at the number of monsters who came to the plasma rifle party at the end. I'd certainly say hi to this map if I met it in the street, but I probably wouldn't hang around to chat for very long.

Old Post 02-12-13 01:24 #
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BlackFish
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MAP12
-This map played a lot better than I thought it would.
-My favorite part was the plasma elevator. Normally these sequences can get pretty bad but it was a matter of how well the player is able to use the plasma rifle and when to use the invuln. After a few tries I managed to pop the invuln when the archies showed up, when it was needed.
-Again, didn't need the blue key. I somehow ditched 100 monsters.
-The last cyberdemon was frantic. I chose not to fight it as doing so would have been a pain with all the teleport lines.

MAP13
-Short map with green brick then with brown brick. Goes by quickly.
-The amount of rockets in the mancubus room was rather generous considering I barely used them afterwards.
-I liked the underground tunnel bit.

Last edited by BlackFish on 02-12-13 at 02:58

Old Post 02-12-13 02:38 #
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Magnusblitz
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MAP14 - VERTIGO PLANT

I liked this one. Definitely ups the difficulty in a few parts, though other parts are relatively easy. The opening is tough, lots of running around trying to find where the monsters are without easy cover. Really enjoyed the fight up to the red key - just straight gunning down a bunch of infantry, then getting the cyberdemon to thin out the barons for me. Blue key was a bit more annoying but there's enough cover. There are a number of points where the player can shortcut the map (for example, you can jump straight into the red key area without first coming from the blue key area). Not sure if any of these can get the player stuck, as Kristian Ronge alluded to... there was one spot (one of the slime waterfalls) where the player can fall, not take damage with the radsuit, but eventually die (radsuit runs out, or player jumps off) as there's no escape.

It's definitely an abstract design, and that might be putting it nicely... there's enough variation in textures to almost seem completely random. We've got green slime, red blood, brown walls, grey dirt walls, techbase walls, boxes, grey stone, pipewalls, wooden walls, green marble, computer walls... okay, so its really more bordering on visual cacophony, but it does help make the level easy to navigate.

The only part I didn't like was the Arch-Vile at the end, simply because I was running forward so fast that I bumped into it and fell straight off. It's a pretty narrow walkway! Still, I liked this map a lot. The three bosses are easy, but I liked the challenge of the parts in-between, and like the design even if it's visually a nightmare mish-mash.

(Oh, and yeah, the beserk pack secret unloading six revenants didn't really feel like a good trade, either).

Old Post 02-12-13 07:16 #
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Demon of the Well
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Map 13 -- Underearth - 100% kills / 100% secrets
Another relatively small breather map after the previous outing. It's pretty unassuming, but I liked it more than most of the maps filling a similar role in the above-ground episode. The fight for the first skull key against the large group of demons is fun from a pistol start--the SSG is more than capable of dispatching them all while protecting the marine completely from harm, but the catch is that without carryover ammo, the player won't have nearly enough shells on them at the time the trap is sprung to handle the situation, requiring them to use their speed to nab shells a few at a time out of the rooms the demons came from to finish the fight. The drop into the dark bloody grotto was also fairly interesting, as the tactic I used to handle the specters in a similar situation on the previous map didn't work here, as this time they were unwilling/unable to enter the pool of light where I first hit the floor. This required me to zip around the periphery and use sound and other clues, such as the impacts of cacodemon and imp fireballs, to locate and blast the specters. Beyond this point, the map pretty much becomes a corridor-sweeping rocket-fest, which given the light opposition, makes for a quick wrap-up. I don't remember a lot about the map's aesthetics at this point, to be honest, which generally means they were serviceable enough.

Map 14 -- Vertigo Plant - 103% kills / 100% secrets
It seems that uptempo starts where holding one's ground is not tactically viable are a hallmark of franckFRAG's style, as I noticed a similar tendency in all of his maps for 3 Heures d'Agonie. For my part, I like playing a situation like this from time to time, where you have to run deeper and deeper into dangerous territory, all the while stirring up more and more shit, until managing to find a weapon, an ammo cache, an easily-defensible spot, or some other thing that eventually turns the momentum back in your favor (or at least levels the playing field). In this case, I was eventually able to get a handle on things after taking a chaingun from a dead zombie, and picking up the rocket launcher shortly thereafter. There are a lot of powerful monsters in this map, from the seemingly omnipresent spiders on floating platforms to a couple of instances of teleporting revenant squads to the arch-viles in the watchtowers to the cyberdemons at the halfway point and the finale, but beyond the first few minutes, fFrag has been very generous with ammo and weapon placement as well (particularly cells), meaning the player is usually well-equipped to handle them. The secrets are powerful, too, although a couple of them apparently involve the risk of death via falling. Indeed, the danger of falling is probably not going to be very popular here, and this is not wholly unreasonable. I was fortunate enough not to fall to my death while playing, but I remember looking around after dropping down to leave the area where the mastermind is fought for the blue key and thinking "If I had walked off that blind ledge you're led towards a little slower, I'd have had to restart the map. That sucks." Apart from this, though, I found all of the challenges pretty above-the-board, although I kind of wish the first cyber had been able to leave his platform when I lowered it for him (I had initially suspected he could be telefragged with some exploration, but no dice). The second cyber is going to drive players who took unction at the phasing cyber from the end of 'Alpha Tower' up the wall, as he has the same trick up his sleeve (hell, maybe it's the same one, rebuilt and refurbished to vex you anew), but there's more space here and a much more convenient safe spot available to counter this, too. I found the secret BFG after I'd already killed him, and so happened to be holding it when I approached the exit, which pretty much negated that last trap. That last trap, hmmm....that is going to have at least a few people screaming "BULLSHIT!" at odd hours of the night. Again, I find I can't really resent it much, though, as it looks like it can be safely backpedaled away from, and it is also heavily telegraphed on the map screen if one happened to find the computer area map ( by far the easiest secret, incidentally...hardly even 'secret' at all).
Aesthetically it was very "second episode of a Doom WAD", with a mix of a large number of different materials--wood, stone, brick, marble, vines, slime, the odd computer section, etc. It's also more well-lit than a lot of the previous maps. I like gloom, myself, but I had no qualms here, and this was the first time I really noticed the new E2 sky texture, which gives a nice sense of humbling scale. Since the map's freeform texture scheme doesn't really resemble anything in particular and its name is pretty vague to boot, I imagined it to be the ruins of some ancient observatory or scientific post turned hell-nest, positioned on a rocky pass leading down into Romero proper, patrolled by a detachment of gunspiders on hovering platforms in an attempt to keep the protagonist from advancing any further.

I quite liked it, myself, but the rude awakenings at the map's beginning and its ending certainly won't be to everyone's taste.

Old Post 02-12-13 07:20 #
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Capellan
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Map14

I died, then somehow managed to overwrite both my savegames while dead. Genius move on my part.

Don't fancy replaying maps 01-13, and have no interest in trying this map from a pistol start, so I'm out until next month.

What I saw of this (up to the Spiderdemon) I didn't much like.

Old Post 02-12-13 08:00 #
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cannonball
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Map14 - Vertigo Plant by franckFRAG
I did the same thing as Capellan and overwrote my save so pistol started this... oh boy. Note I overwrote it with a save from the new pcorf map
tough tough map marred by some very poor design choices at times
The Mastermind, well you can't hit her at ground level as pummeling 400 cells at the spider without success proved. So you have to hit the spider on the rising platform (but you are too far away to start and have to be level with the spider to get a hit. Well thats 20 free seconds to be turned into swiss cheese by then.
Red key archvile is almost impossible to hit and has serious trolling capabilities. The only place I could think of hitting it is near the yellow key room, you do have rocket launcher there so probably I was supposed to take it now then.
This map does look great, full of weird and wonderful stuff and scenery. Fits the name very well.
Also teleporting cyber is nowhere near as bad as in map12, it's annoying and supposed to mess with you a bit, but not in a dickish kind of way. The end archvile though can be a real heart breaker as falling off the ledges equals instant death.
It's a cool level but it's flaws prevent it from making the step into epicness.

Last edited by cannonball on 02-12-13 at 13:58

Old Post 02-12-13 09:00 #
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LordK
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Capellan said:
Map14
Don't fancy replaying maps 01-13, and have no interest in trying this map from a pistol start, so I'm out until next month.


Oh come on, don't quit now, I enjoy reading your comments.

Just cheat yourself some weapons and ammo or skip to map 15.

Old Post 02-12-13 13:34 #
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Magnusblitz
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Yeah, you'd probably have all the weapons and be close to full on Map14/15 anyways, so just IDFA yourself into Map14 or 15 and go from there.

Old Post 02-12-13 18:28 #
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Enzo03
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Hey, I might try this out, too.

Old Post 02-12-13 21:11 #
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Kristian Ronge
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Posts: 1977
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Adam, I like your comments too much to not protest your quitting! :-) So, I must third Magnus' and LordK's opinion: IDFA the start, play until you reach a safe spot, and spend some minutes shooting into a wall so you have roughly the ammo supply as you did originally going in. And if you didn't have the BFG yet, just don't use it (Gentleman's agreement).


Magnusblitz said:
There are a number of points where the player can shortcut the map (for example, you can jump straight into the red key area without first coming from the blue key area). Not sure if any of these can get the player stuck, as Kristian Ronge alluded to...

Well, yes. I jumped down there with a SG, 80/0 or so in health and maybe 15 shells. That's what I meant by "hilariously underequipped". ;-)
I did put up a good fight though but succumbed to a Revenant missile after some braveheart fighting, being slowly pushed down towards the blue armour/backpack secret area. But, anyway, it's just silly because if I had made it through and up to the red/blue key door I would still have to go get the blue key and then go through that same area again. Why allow the player to go down there, regardless if by accident or by choice?


cannonball said:
The Mastermind, well you can't hit her at ground level as pummeling 400 cells at the spider without success proved.

Well you can, actually, but very few shots connect from the ground (only as the Mastermind is at its closest to the front edge) so it takes a shitload of ammo.

cannonball said:
Red key archvile is almost impossible to hit and has serious trolling capabilities. The only place I could think of hitting it is near the yellow key room, you do have rocket launcher there so probably I was supposed to take it now then.

I killed it from the green armour ledge, quite safely (you can even avoid its attack easily).

Old Post 02-12-13 21:14 #
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cannonball
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yeah that was where I got him in the end, I let him live for some reason at that point and trust me he can do some serious trolling around the red key area with the windows angled completely in his favour, it's my fault for not taking him out earlier :P
I will again say this map looks awesome and the music is kickass and fits the map perfectly.
Actually I nocliped around the map and found a lot of interesting shortcuts like the slimefall fake wall which leads you straight to the blue key, it's kind of neat that the map at first glance seems very linear but in fact you can take multiple routes.
Still the spider mastermind and the archvile are bad design ideas, the first for a completely unfair battle where you will lose a lot of health and the second for pretty much instantly killing the player if the archie has an immediate attack.

Old Post 02-12-13 21:31 #
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Phobus
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MAP14: Mouselook and save/loading made this a joy to experience, particularly as I came in heavily loaded and therefore could make my stands and progress at my own pace. Definitely broke the circle a bit though, as I leapt over to the red skull before even getting the yellow key, so I beat that fight, then realised I should've carried on the path to get the yellow key, then get the blue skull and finally the red one.

Got all 7 secrets and killed every enemy, taking half an hour to do so. Really enjoyed exploring the surreal world of floating items and mish-mashed themes. Thanks to this thread the minor bullshit fight at the end was pre-warned and therefore BFG'd and chaingun sniped in short order.

All told, I really liked it, but definitely wasn't playing as the author intended :P

Old Post 02-12-13 21:34 #
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Demon of the Well
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I eventually killed the arch-vile in the wooden tower nearest the red skull key by jumping directly into his easily-spotted (though riskily-accessed) secret area and shotgunning him right after picking up the key. He hit me once, but since he's in there with a megasphere, it was like it never happened.

I guess the spiderdemon battle is slightly luck-based in that it might be pretty hard to survive (without wasting a ton of ammo on inefficient shots from the ground) if you're almost dead already when it's time to ride the rising column, since whether you get hit or not is largely out of your hands at that point. But assuming that's not the case, I reckon the advantage there is more yours than hers, as she's usually a pretty poor shot at that distance and you can easily just roll her with one long plasma salvo.

Old Post 02-12-13 21:45 #
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mouldy
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14 - Vertigo Plant by franckFRAG

Wow, that was a tough map. Took a few attempts to make it past the opening, after that there were saves aplenty. Despite getting my arse kicked in every direction I really enjoyed this map. The difficulty seems a lot higher than previous maps, and the style in general seems to be a bit of a departure. Not that I was following any storyline but I got the vague impression that the starting maps were set in various real world places, this map was altogether more abstract. Things I wasn't so keen on: the falling off the edges to certain death, I get that you have to watch your step, but it makes for some cheap deaths. The long range arachnotron snipers - often too far away to shoot them, so you just have to dodge around and get to them later. Then when you least expect it you get a barrage of plasma up your bum and a swift death with no chance to react.

Despite all that I had a great time working my way through this one - my favourite moment was the first cyberdemon battle, dipping him in and out of the baron swarm. Good stuff.


cannonball said:

The Mastermind, well you can't hit her at ground level as pummeling 400 cells at the spider without success proved. So you have to hit the spider on the rising platform



I don't remember having any trouble shooting that mastermind... you can take out the smaller spiders from down in the nukage and then blast away at the big guy using the closer red pillar for cover. Going up on that platform only seems to be for shooting a switch behind him. Also it seems that I also did it all in the wrong order, getting red key first.

Last edited by mouldy on 02-12-13 at 22:44

Old Post 02-12-13 22:18 #
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Sp00kyFox
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MAP14
just wanted to give feedback on some problems. in the area after you open the door with the red and blue skull, you can't escape the green pit if you don't hit the switch first in the little room.
also the part of the pit which rises doesn't damage you (but I guess that's not avoidable).

ps: nice memorial.
RIP Phobos Deimos

Old Post 02-12-13 23:05 #
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Kristian Ronge
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Map 15 -- Elm Street
This stone temple takes the word "old-school" seriously indeed. If someone told me it was made in late '94 I would not doubt them for a second, it looks that old. Sadly, it's not especially interesting. It's small and undeniably plain, with hurtful blood for floor in large sections of the map. This, initially, makes for somewhat of an interesting challenge as you try to find radiation suits to keep going. You're given so many throughout, though, that you wonder if the author intended you to run around for a few extra minutes after killing everything to enjoy the scenery... which is ironic, considering there's precious little scenery to enjoy. Gameplay is for the most part all right, even though you get an almost insulting amount of ammo. There's a boring Arch-Vile/Cyber combo fight which one has to fight using the SG and chaingun if playing from scratch, and which seemingly takes forever. Okay, okay, there's an alternative: rushing into the small room where the Cyber resides and grab the SSG, but I'm not suicidal. That's pretty early on, and after that you get so stocked up on goodies, weapons and rad suits that you breeze through the (short) end. There's really not much to this, except for a rather nice double secret to get to the secret exit (alternately, you can get to it by using an AV). Not bad, but a bit dull and very forgettable. --3/5


Sp00kyFox said:
just wanted to give feedback on some problems. in the area after you open the door with the red and blue skull, you can't escape the green pit if you don't hit the switch first in the little room.

Incorrect, I mentioned it in my review. There are well-hidden thin steps allowing you to get back up to that switch again.

Last edited by Kristian Ronge on 02-12-13 at 23:32

Old Post 02-12-13 23:08 #
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Sp00kyFox
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cannonball said:
The Mastermind, well you can't hit her at ground level as pummeling 400 cells at the spider without success proved.

seems like a compatibility issue. I killed it without problems from ground level with the plasma gun.


Kristian Ronge said:
Incorrect, I mentioned it in my review. There are well-hidden thin steps allowing you to get back up to that switch again.

thanks for the info, seems I overlooked them.

Last edited by Sp00kyFox on 02-12-13 at 23:48

Old Post 02-12-13 23:09 #
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Magnusblitz
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MAP15 - ELM STREET

Yeah, this map definitely feels like it was made back in 1994. Lots of ugly STONE3 wall texture and oddly angled walls. Fights are extremely easy, as most of it just seems to be monsters strewn around randomly with an easy-to-kill cyberdemon thrown in for kicks. Horribly overstocked, too, I was at 194/104 when I found the red key (and the soulsphere/blue armor next to it). Only difficult part was finding the secret exit, couldn't figure out how to get the lift at the start to drop (ended up going back and using the Arch-Vile jump). This map felt very out of place in this WAD.

Old Post 02-13-13 01:51 #
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BlackFish
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MAP14
-The initial brawl can prove quite cumbersome to a pistol start, but the generous amount of rockets I got from the previous map mainly made this a problem of which corner to use at the right time.
-After that brawl though, it turns into a rather solid map.
-The spider demon battle was the easier of the two "boss battles". The cyberdemon one can be easier if you pull away the nobles towards you, provided you cleared the other side.
-The end turns into a rush to the finish line provided you're not doing a UV Max.
-Music was cool, but the soundfont I was using made one of the instruments sound like a computer humming noise was in the background.

Old Post 02-13-13 03:30 #
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Demon of the Well
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I reckon we can just treat the secret maps as extensions of map 15 as far as the club's posting dates go (at least in February)....but correct me if I'm wrong.

Map 15 -- Elm Street - 113% kills / 100% secrets
Immediately identifiable as another work by the author of map 05--it has a similar sort of layout, where one gets the impression of running around in a space that, if the textures and lighting were different, might easily pass for some kind of wageslave-level office floor, full of thin walls meeting at right angles and set down in haphazard array, as though the network of passages and rooms they form was not planned so much as improvised. It also has map 05's largely binary texture theme, in this case mossy bricks and red rock instead of dark metal and lacquered tiles, which actually looked pretty good as far as color is concerned with the palette I'm using. I felt that the play here was more interesting than in map 05, at least up until killing the cyberdemon. Remaining static at the start won't work, as pistol-starters will lack the ammo and weaponry to deal with the opposition on the main floor. So, after finding the first radsuit in an easy secret, the player has to run around the main area collecting shells, bullets, and the shotgun before it expires, waking up a number of imps, specters, hell nobles, and lost souls in the process, all overlooked by the cyb. It's still really simple stuff, but still requires more investment than anything in map 05 did. The last thrill involves picking a moment to slip by the cyberdemon to grab the SSG on his overlook, as fighting him from the floor with just the chaingun and SG would be very tedious. After he's dead, it's just a bunch of basic room-clearing with far too many supplies afforded again, and an optional secret search. I get the impression that the method for accessing the secret exit was probably just the first thing that came to the author's head, but I've seen a lot of secret exits a lot more half-assed than this, still.

Map 31 -- Another Dimension, a.k.a. Degravitation - 115% kills / 100% secrets
Hey, everything's upside down. That's the special gimmick for this level, but it's pretty easy to forget, as the actual fights and progression don't really underscore this particular matter of circumstance very much. A lot of the map is also quite dark, and uses a lot of dirt and ashwall contrasted with a small tan base, so it's not exactly a feast for the eyes, either. However, it's not without its charms, as it has at least one quite good fight, and the super-secret exit method is interesting as well. The aforementioned fight is the chaingun trap found shortly after passing through the small inverted graveyard--ignoring the fact that a chaingun is a hilariously inadequate reward for the amount of shit it springs on you, this one really gets the blood moving. The two arch-viles tend to approach through the two different tunnels, and you have to be constantly killing imps just to keep at least one of them busy with resurrection long enough for you to fight with the other one. Very dangerous, and quite satisfying...I think I finished this fight with all of 5 bullets and 4 shells to my name, and so was Tysoning it for a bit afterwards until finding more ammo, which at first consisted mostly of rockets, oddly enough.
I've never seen the method of (super)secret exit access used here before--my surmise is that it takes advantage of some of the idiosyncrasies in the engine's physics...basically, under most circumstances you can't fit through a space of a certain size, but under some particular circumstances, apparently you can....or that's how it appeared to me. Regardless, you don't need to understand how the trick works to be able to figure out the puzzle--all of the elements are there before you, it's just a question of experimentation (and a bit of quick footwork) and seeing how they fit together.

Map 32 -- The Cataclysm - 100% kills / 66% secrets
Notable Orin Flaharty influence here--lots of small raised pathways and enclosures hewn from sandstone and wood rising high out of a body of water. Switchhittery is less pronounced here than in Valkiriforce's other Interception maps, with more of a focus on hopping from pathway to pathway and more straightforward key-hunting. The map is less trap-oriented as well, with most of the opposition using superior firing positions rather than ambush to try to stymy you. Apart from the fact that its presence is probably not really necessary, the invulnerability artifact is well-placed, giving you a choice of easing the difficulty of the early going, or of powering through the concentration of monsters behind the yellow key door. I chose the former, using it to berserk-punch all of the hell nobles congregating on the ledge by the yellow key door to death. As a result, I had more than enough rockets and shells to see me through the rest, although I suspect a person fighting some or all of these guys conventionally will be in a pretty tight ammo spot until finding the plasma rifle (for which there is plenty of juice). I missed a secret here, which presumably accounted for most of the item quotient in the map--I reckon it's probably down in the drink, somewhere, since I found the soulsphere secret early on, and the megasphere at the very end which is presumably to reward those doing a continuous playthrough for bothering to come to the super-secret level. No real complaints about any of this, although somehow it didn't feel quite like a secret level.

Halfway through, now, and another, more general observation I would have is that I'm liking a lot of the soundtrack to the game, particularly in these last three maps. It's neither too hamfisted nor too understated, and is generally more mellifluous than percussive, which is generally to my taste as far as Doom MUS/midi goes.

Old Post 02-13-13 07:28 #
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cannonball
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Map15 - Elm Street by phobosdeimos1
Rather bland affair here with the same texture usage throughout, the combat is ok though. Couldn't find the secret exit :P
Map31 - Degravitation by Processingcontrol
Not much to say here, good fights which are fairly tough, quirky architecture which is the theme here. The secret exit was quite clever in my view.
Map32 - The Cataclysm by valkiriforce
Yep Orin Flaharty seems to exist a lot here, the design is lots of height variation and lots and traversing of thinnish platforms at times, nothing too annoying though. There was one unfair fight and this was the teleporter onto the platform before grabbing the red key, landing you in some imps and revenants without any cover. But that's all.
Didn't use the invulnerability :P

Old Post 02-13-13 08:31 #
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Kristian Ronge
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We're doing secret maps now? Okay...

Map 31 -- Degravitation
Yikes, this one packed a punch! It's a subterranean level featuring a world turned upside down. The gameplay is pretty tough, with several neat and deadly traps. You'll be fighting off Revenants and Arch-Viles throughout as you progress deeper into the inner depths of the map. I generally enjoyed myself here, because while it's definitely not easy, there are few very cheap tricks and you're given enough health to make it through unless you make serious mistakes (I made it through in my first attempt with one very close call). If you let the Arch-Viles resurrect too many monsters you may get some ammo problems midway; I was down to a handful of shells at one point but as I'd found the berserk pack I punched a few monsters and worked my way through. The environment is rather well-done, there are plenty of places where you feel like you're going through a world turned upside down. At one point I didn't really know where to go, and found I had to run back to a place near the start and activate a switch there in an area which had opened up. Felt a bit unintuitive to me, there was no reason for me to go back there (in hindsight, there were some imps let loose from there, but I didn't realize they came from that direction when I encountered them). Secrets are good, with enough rewards to ease the pain of those tricky fights in close quarters. In the end you're given an abundance of ammo and a megasphere for.. no discernable reason, really? Unless you're playing the maps in sequence I guess. The way to get to the secret exit was excellent; it took me several minutes to figure it out, but hey I'm an idiot. :-) First time I've seen that type of trick used for such a purpose, unless I'm forgetting something. You trickaholics should also be able to glide through the bars to reach the exit. All in all, a mostly fun and tricky map. By the way, the intermission screen shows another title ("Another Dimension"). --4/5

Map 32 -- The Cataclysm
A smallish map with obvious references to, among others, MM maps 5 and 24 and MM2 maps 12 and 21. It's pretty good. I usually don't care much for these designs but I felt that this map always played fair and when I got into some trouble it was (with the exception of the teleport right next to an angry Revenant) pretty much my own fault. The challenge, like most of the time with this type of map, depends a bit on how you choose to confront the monsters. I berserk punched my way through most of the monsters in the first cave using the invuln, and from there it was mostly plain sailing playing the rest of it slowly and safely. The map looks nice and there are enough of the bigger baddies to keep you interested as you move along. The progression wasn't stupidly easy, nor confusing (because the map is so small). The battles behind the yellow key door were fun but then the map makes you backtrack a bit to the ending room with no real purpose (other than to give you a megasphere which is helpful for continuous play). Two other secrets: the soulsphere I rocketjumped to -- which cost me about as much health as I gained (I wonder if a strafe50 jump is possible? Hmm...) -- but I found out you can reach it through a teleport, and the health potion one was a little pointless and definitely difficult to spot, had I not jumped off the ledge there to look for monsters. All in all, not bad. --4/5

Old Post 02-13-13 14:46 #
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Sp00kyFox
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MAP15
hmm.. it was ok, but graphic wise probably the weakest map so far. texturing is very boring or how Kristian put it "old-school". secret exit was kinda obvious since you could see the door from the ground with no other way up there except for.. well, you figure it out ;)

MAP31
interesting idea. never played a map so far which was upside down. asking myself if it's maybe possible to do something like that with zdoom, where the monsters are also on the ceiling.
I didn't liked the start very much since the cave is so dark. traps and monster placement were neat.

MAP32
pits! I usually don't like maps with huge pit areas where you can fall to the ground but this map was still ok for me. probably because it was just water down there and not some damaging acid or lava.
battles were fun and map progression was clear. good bonus map.

Old Post 02-13-13 18:19 #
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Magnusblitz
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MAP31 - DEGRAVITATION

Ooh, upside down level, nice... I like to see quirky ideas for secret maps. Unfortunately, the map is really boring and doesn't do anything with the idea. Lots of underground areas, which look the same right-side-up as upside down, so somewhat of a wasted idea. And it's too goddamn dark! Even the techbase parts were pretty drab and filled with parts that don't really feel "upside down" like metal vents. Nice touch with the upside down switch though. The gameplay is eminently forgettable, with nothing much to note except a few too many Arch-Viles considering the rest of the monsters here, and that 2 Arch-Viles + 20 Imps is not a good trap for a measly chaingun. Clever secret exit, though. Still, I feel like this map really squandered a good idea.

MAP32 - THE CATACLYSM

Not sure how this is supposed to be "even stranger", as the aesthetic and design doesn't seem different from any other abstract Doom-design map, but alright. If you like fighting hell nobles from tiny walkways while being harassed by hitscanners and revenants from range, this is the map for you! If you're like me and you don't, this map doesn't have much to offer. Pretty linear and unnotable gameplay, and the invuln sphere sucks out any challenge the final area might offer (and with ample rocket/cell ammo, it's not even needed). Nothing bad but nothing that would make me recommend or remember it.

Old Post 02-13-13 22:05 #
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Kristian Ronge
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Map 16 -- Hell House
A rather small map which is made to seem larger by leading the player through a series of small corridors and lifts. The theme is a brown stone mansion of some sort. A consistent theme and consistent action throughout. There are quite a few monsters for such a small area, most of them are the smaller monsters (with chaingunners aplenty) but there is no shortage of larger monsters. Fights usually restrict you in some way, as they take place in cramped quarters. Traps are of the old -- oldest, even -- kind: lifts which drop down with monsters on them or next to them, and one or two monster closets. After the initial start, which is delightfully chaotic but a bit too violent for my taste, you can visit the whole map in any order apart from the end section beyond the RK door, and if you do stuff in the "right" order you'll have a much easier time. You're given plenty of ammunition throughout but it's difficult to use the RL efficiently considering the tight quarters. The fight at the alcove just before the end with the teleporting monsters was very fun. The rest of the fights were okay but nothing special. I don't understand why all those Hell Knights at the start aren't marked multiplayer only. 3 monsters (two Revenants and a Mancubus) didn't teleport out during my playthrough. Maybe because of buggy teleport lines? Two easy-to-find secrets (soulsphere, blue armour) which if taken early makes the map a breeze. --3/5

Old Post 02-13-13 23:06 #
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mouldy
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15 - Elm Street by phobosdeimos1

Very old school flavour to this map. Lots of running around on damaging floor, but thankfully there are a bunch of rad suits and loads of health sprinkled around. Pistol starters have the joy of facing a cyberdemon with only chaingun and shotgun, there's plenty of ammo, but yeah. Also the first archvile turned into a bit of a chore as he was constantly resurecting imps in front of him. By the time I found the rocket launcher I didn't have the need to use it. Finding the secret exit was cool though.

31 - Degravitation by Processingcontrol

This was a cool map, I liked the upside down gimmick. Lots of secret passages and mystery going on, and nice use of lighting - dark enough to be creepy without feeling completely blind. Quite a few archviles dotted around, though they were never used in a bad way. I liked the puzzle to get to the secret exit, though it wasnt that hard to figure out (i don't like using my brain when I'm playing doom). If I was in a pub with this map I would happily share my pork scratchings with it.

32 - The Cataclysm by valkiriforce

Another cool secret map, I can see why they made them both so easy to find. This one has a lot of catwalking, but thankfully without pits of death below. The start was nice and hectic, charging around unfamiliar and precarious ledges to find a deccent weapon while dodging missiles from everywhere - I took particular joy in berserking the barons to death with the invincibility. The limitations of movement made for some interesting fights, and the open plan rooms with multiple levels call for extra vigilance from ranged attacks. Was nice to get a plasma rifle fairly early on and enough ammo to put it to good use. A very well crafted doom experience.

Old Post 02-13-13 23:49 #
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BlackFish
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MAP15
-It doesn't have 2013 detailing, but the geometry still serves a purpose.
-The gameplay worked here. The rad suits could have been tighter but that's me.
-Arch jump to the secret exit!
MAP31
-I like the music here.
-The lack of certain upside down textures kind of ruins the gimmick. At times I felt like I was right side up.
-More arch vile secret jumping! (note the megasphere).
-Bring back memories from a certain Lost Duke level.

Last edited by BlackFish on 02-14-13 at 02:26

Old Post 02-14-13 02:02 #
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Processingcontrol
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Map31 is pretty meh.

I guess the theme's sort of cool, but besides that and the secret exit, it doesn't have much to offer. It's also pretty flat, definitely not a good thing in a map with a height-related gimmick. I stole the idea from Icarus, which has 2 "upside down" levels. One of them (Map05) has some cool ideas but suffers from tedious gameplay, while the other (Map20) is awesome and far better than my attempt.

My other 2 Interception levels (Map17 & Map28) are loads better.



BlackFish said:
MAP15
-More arch vile secret jumping! (note the megasphere).


Don't know what you're talking about here. None of the secrets require archvile jumps.

Old Post 02-14-13 04:10 #
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BlackFish
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Processingcontrol said:

Don't know what you're talking about here. None of the secrets require archvile jumps.


I thought the chaingunners in the end required a AV jump to get up to. I suppose I missed the real route.

Old Post 02-14-13 04:30 #
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