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  • 20. Arch-Violence - Gusta and Thomas van der Velden (2008)

    Plutonia 2 Map11

     

    Arch-Violence


    Baptism by fire is the name of the game in this much more complex and deadly remake of “Hunted” from the original Plutonia Experiment. In this version, nearly a hundred Arch-Viles play cat and mouse with you throughout the labyrinthine ruins on Ultra-Violence, so you’d better stop staring at the architecture and hunt down some heavy firepower before you’re toast!

     

    - @Not Jabba
     

    19. Beneath a Festering Moon - Xaser (2014)

    Back to Saturn X E2 Map26

     

    Beneath a Festering Moon

     

    A grand view, a climactic battle, and a great plot twist which sets up the still hotly-anticipated E3 all in one one. Towers, spirals, and beauteous weirdness are all part and parcel for Xaser's oeuvre at this point, but even among these "Beneath a Festering Moon" is particularly striking, both for its "I can't believe he was able to realize this under vanilla executable limits" factor which defines the project as a whole and, for normal humans, its rollercoaster ride of pitched battles and poignant cinematic moments.

     

    - @Demon of the Well

     

    18. Interstellar Sickness and Shaman’s Device - lupinx-Kassman (2012)

    Community Chest 4 Map20 / Map21

     

    Interstellar Sickness and Shaman's Device


    If you’ve ever so much as glimpsed lupinx-Kassman’s space duology, it’s easy to see why they were practically all the community could talk about in 2012. Taking players on a jaw-dropping journey from uber-futuristic floating platforms into the glowing cyberpunk bowels of the space station in search of a rogue AI named Shaman, they raised the bar on what Doom maps could be and set a "wow factor" precedent that mappers would strive toward for years to come.

     

    - @Not Jabba
     

    17. Pale Monument - Insane_Gazebo (2009)

    Sunder Map08
     

    Pale Monument

     

    In a WAD renowned for its striking, cyclopean backdrops, "Pale Monument" remains one of the most strikingly monolithic of them all, not just for its unbridled sense of scale, space, and grandeur, but for the poignant air of melancholy which distinguishes it from its compeers as well. And, hell, boasting some of the biggest and most freeform fights in a WAD defined by epic battles doesn't hurt either, including one of the grandest cacoswarms seen to date.

     

    - @Demon of the Well

     

    16. Wild Bleu Yonder - Xaser and Matt Tropiano (2018)

    Adventures of Square: Episode 2 A5

     

    Wild Bleu Yonder

     

    This mammoth sandbox map has it all: from quick-strike cover-based combat in the dense trees to wide-open battlegrounds, from cloudy abysses to forests full of eyeballs, from lakes of bouncing jello cubes to creepy secret demon trees. It’s pure joy to explore it all and take everything in while blasting your enemies to smithereens.

     

    - @Not Jabba

     

    15. The Shrine - Espi (2008)

    Eternal Doom 4 Map27

     

    The Shrine

     

    The Shrine stands alone among Doom adventure maps. It’s one of those rare creations that feels absolutely timeless, like it could’ve been made yesterday or ten years from now and it would still be just as impactful. It was Espi’s most ambitious work before his untimely passing in 2009, and he really made this one count. From its castle courtyards and waterfalls to its vast edge-of-the-world cliffside vista, The Shrine brings to life the lonely remains of a lost civilization, with a completely original texture set and an unmatched eye for detail. A decade later, I’m still finding new things to admire in it.

     

    Despite its epic scope, The Shrine still carries the same modesty that defined so much of Espi’s work. It feels natural and effortless despite being packed with scenes that any other mapper would eagerly turn into glossy look-at-me setpieces. The Shrine is an invitation to visit another world, courtesy of a master craftsman who was taken from us far too soon.

     

    - @esselfortium

     

    14. The Mancubian Candidate - skillsaw (2015)

    Valiant Map07

     

    The Mancubian Candidate

     

    Ugh. Another MegaWAD, another MAP07. Another bunch of Mancubuses to murder, another family of Arachnotrons to assail, same old, same old. Wait a minute - I can't kill the map's only Mancubus or I'll have an entire swarm of Archviles on my ass? Well, that changes everything! Using the MAP07 map specials embedded into Doom to create an interesting gameplay twist, Skillsaw presents a map that dares you to succumb to your base instincts and screw yourself royally, and it involves keeping one of the most annoying enemies in Doom's bestiary alive to succeed in beating it. Love it or hate it, "The Mancubian Candidate" is one map you won't soon forget as you play through Valiant. I mean, we sure didn't!

     

    - @MTrop

     

    13. Comatose - Lainos (2016)

     

    Comatose


    How can one map be so peaceful and so creepy at the same time? This eerie, endlessly sprawling, consummately detailed ghost town makes you feel like you’ve wandered onto the set of a zombie movie, but instead of the shambling dead per se, you’re faced with nightmarish shadows who may have once been the town’s inhabitants. You can soak up all that delicious atmosphere while trying to piece together the hidden clues about what happened to everyone.

     

    - @Not Jabba


    12. Thunderpeak Powerplant and Termination - Vader (2008)

     

    Thunderpeak Powerplant and Termination


    Thunderpeak was the crown jewel of ZPack (though it was later released as a stand-alone), and it remains one of the crown jewels of ZDoom mapping in general. Featuring several great custom monsters – including Vader’s own Terminator, one of the most awesome custom bosses the Doom community has ever seen – it strikes the perfect balance between using advanced features to create something truly unique and impressive while also remaining true to Doom’s classic arcade feel.

     

    - @Not Jabba


    11. Go Fuck Yourself - Ribbiks (2015)

    Sunlust Map29

     

    Go Fuck Yourself

     

    Never mind that it’s an imposing and wickedly designed void map with a cool yellow tech theme, as beautiful and challenging as anything Ribbiks has made. We all know what we’re here for: the Arch-Vile carousel room, where you have to fight off teleporting hordes while simultaneously staying behind a perpetually moving circular wall to avoid getting fried. It’s probably the single most memorable combat setpiece in all of Doomdom.

     

    - @Not Jabba

     

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