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  • 13_Banner.png?_cb=1670368537

  • Espi Award - For lifetime achievement


    6_espi.png?_cb=1544228975Frans P. "@Xymph" De Vries


    Our community, since its inception, has been blessed with the kind of stability that eludes many others on the Internet. A big reason for this has indisputably been the long term commitment some members have shown towards a scene that, for most of us, amounts to no more than a hobby in the end. However few have managed to achieve such an indelible yet almost mystical presence as Frans P. de Vries, better known by his alias Xymph. Despite being a pillar of our community, he has maintained a lower profile than some other supergiants, and it is possible that some of our readers may not be immediately familiar with his work, notwithstanding the fact he has been involved in our scene since the very start, all the way back to 1993. To chronicle his exploits does, in reality, require two different tales entirely, because there has been a considerable gap between his leave of absence at the end of the previous century and his return in style in 2015. Yet what makes Xymph's accomplishments so extraordinary is that one would be sincerely hard pressed to determine which of his two main periods of activity have proven more invaluable. But let's go back to the beginning...


    Xymph was a part of the Doom community before there really was a Doom community as we know it. Long before the times of the forum boards, and even before the /idgames archive came to be, Xymph was already a regular on the Usenet newsgroups formed during the game's pre-release hype. After becoming a moderator and contributing to several important FAQs of the time, Xymph eventually became the principal maintainer of the /idgames archive itself, starting in December 1995, until handing over the reins to Ty Halderman in early 1997. During this time, one of his key achievements was obtaining direct permission from id Software to upload the venerable alpha versions to the archive, with all the implications for modding and the history of Doom itself that those ended up having. Oh, and did you know he was a great ASCII artist back then already?



    Xymph created the very first big Doom ASCII logo, later used in Hank Leukart's Official Doom FAQ!

    But then, there was silence... for a while. The community continued to prosper, as it became clear that no matter how many hot FPS games would be released on the market, Doom would just Not Die, and in 2015 Xymph decided that, after all, he was not done with this game just yet. In 2016 he joined the independent DoomWiki, the main hub of history and information for all things Doom related. To say that his return heralded a torrent of new content and features would be an understatement: he hadn't merely started adding crucial information about Doom's earliest days and providing seemingly endless and comprehensive fixes to pages, but the biggest amount of work has without a doubt went into a multitude of scripts. First of all, a great deal of new tools were created which allowed for things ranging from extracting statistics from Doom maps and outputting them in a wiki-friendly format, to obtaining and interfacing speedrunning information from DSDA and automatically filling it into the wiki tables. But the star of the show has definitely been the programming and implementation of the aptly named XymphBot, which can be fed instructions for specific tasks, resulting in mass batches of edits generating level pages for individual maps and megawads (I don't need to tell you how many this community produces!), map preview additions, categorization, and anything else you can think of. This system works so impeccably that, on answering a newcomer's question regarding article creation, fellow DoomWiki busy bee Quasar ended up quipping that the efficiency is such it apparently leads people to think the articles are generated spontaneously.



    Xymph reached 30,000 edits on the wiki this year, an insurmountable feat for most... and this is without counting the XymphBot edits!

    Even though his two main periods of activity are strikingly different in what they brought to the table, one can easily see how his approach has always been characterized by two things: rigorous, comprehensive work, and a focus on community needs and wants. Need a big and beautiful ASCII logo for your definitive Doom FAQ in 1994? No problem! Want (near) monthly recaps of all the happenings on the one true Wiki, with specifics on what gets added to each category? Done and done! You've come to realize a better interface for uploading WADs to /idgames is now highly needed due to the FTP protocol being phased out? You got it! Time and time again, Xymph has proven himself to be an excellent architect, regardless of the specific platform he chose to make his adobe on, and as the community's tenants, it can be easy to perceive all this as nearly invisible, and to take it for granted. Xymph's excellence, then, shines through for those who look just a bit closer, because virtually every single change he's made, every tool he's programmed and every decision he's taken, all looked to the future. "Leave no stone unturned" is the name of the game, and articles were combed repeatedly to spot even the tiniest of mistakes, and changes applied to several pages instead of just one because, if such seemingly minor issues are not taken care of now, they would only lead to problems for others who attempt to use the tools and the wiki later. Such level of professionalism in the community is simply virtually unparalleled.




    The idgames uploader panel, a much needed tool to make archival onto the site more convenient for everyone. Thanks, Xymph!

    And yet, one thing remains definitive. Xymph writes, in the opening paragraph for his DoomWiki user page, that Doom has changed his life. What's every bit as true is that Xymph himself has changed all of our lives, immeasurably for the better, and we cannot possibly thank him enough.


    - @Dynamo

  • 2022 Cacowards


    Espi Award for Lifetime Achievement

    • Frans P. de Vries


    Top Ten - Page 1

    • The Magenta Spire
    • Jumpwad
    • Ozonia


    Top Ten - Page 2

    • Elementalism: Phase 1
    • Dust Devil
    • Malevolence E1
    • Don't Turn Your Back on the City


    Top Ten - Page 3

    • KDiKDiZD
    • The 10x10 Project
    • Overboard


    Special Features

    • Doomkid's Jamal Jones contest
    • Greenian
    • Doom CE
    • Promising Newcomers


    22 More for 2022


    Multiplayer Awards

    • Horde and Hordamex
    • FrantikDM2


    Gameplay Mod Awards

    • Gun Bonsai
    • Voxel Doom


    Other Awards

    • Mordeth Award
      • KDiKDiZD vanilla tech
    • Codeaward
      • Ultimate Doom Builder / DoomTools
    • Machaward
      • Doom RPG port
    • Dootaward
      • Ozonia OST
    • Creator of the Year
      • Deadwing



    Shamus Young—a self-described “b-list internet celebrity”—was never a staple of the Doom community, but he left an indelible mark when he released his 1995 map ‘Doom City,” which this very website recognized when we ranked the 100 greatest maps of all time. Beyond the Doom sphere-of-influence, Shamus was known in many circles for his prolific content; Mass Effect players knew him for his fifty-part retrospective while tabletop roll players read his comic series, ‘DM of the Rings.’ All of this was available on his quaint, ad-free personal website which he updated with content almost every day for the past fifteen years—something that seems completely anathema to content creators in the post ‘Web 2.0’ world of monetization and social media integration. He was also an author, composer, programmer and, most importantly, a beloved father and husband; a true renaissance-man of the internet.


    - @Scuba Steve


    Shamus Young
    August 24, 1971 - June 15, 2022



    The Doom community was saddened to learn of Brendt "Megalyth" Pantley's passing this year. A highly curious, attentive and introspective person with a kindly manner, Megalyth's fascination with Doom editing began in much the same way as it did for other stalwarts of the 1990s: at the bottom of a shovelware collection. In 2011, drawn to the waters of deep-dive analysis and to ancient Doom prospecting, he became an integral member of the Doom The Way id Did project and a regular chatterbox in the old #doomtwid IRC channel. His insights and mappings there helped to perpetuate enthusiasm at the height one of the community's most exciting moments, and to create a WAD that exemplifies a kind of miniature zeitgeist for some of today's celebrated designers. Occasionally, circa 2013-2015, Megalyth would join the pile-in on one of Countergoat Initiative's multiplayer testing sessions for some idle banter and a bit of deathmatch, featuring the crowd favorite Pot City.


    Above his contributions to Doom, however, including among them his excellent Switcherroom offerings, Megalyth displayed a humbleness and humility in the presentation of his works that is rare even in the best of us, and which everyone should aspire to discover within themselves. He was also a mutual fan of Scatman John, if you needed any more reason to think the man had class.


    Brendt is survived by his wife, Samantha, and his son, Max. He will be deeply missed.


    - @Alfonzo


    Brendt Pantley

    March 30, 1982 - July 23, 2022


    Beyond the many forum superstars and prolific mappers we all know and love, the Doom community is also home to many unsung heroes, whose work goes on quietly for years behind the scenes and remains useful and appreciated by most of those in-the-know, even if these people's names may not often be heard in the community's outer reaches or seen in the author field of big name releases. This year we were unfortunate enough to lose one such unsung hero, Ghastly Dragon. Whether it was crafting new sprite edits, colorful monster ideas, documenting all that could be documented within and outside of Doom, Ghastly had you covered. The fact his name appears in the credits for such high profile projects as ZDCMP2 or Lunatic ought to give you an idea of how versatile his work could be. I still remember many years ago, when over on IRC I asked him a long series of questions regarding how to get some complex DECORATE code to behave as I wanted. He patiently, thoroughly and exhaustively explained everything he could and set me on the right path of understanding how to write code myself. In evident embarassment, I apologized for having taken much more of his free time than the circumstances required, but his sagacious response was, "give a man a fish and he'll have one meal, teach a man how to fish and he'll be set for a lifetime". I've always remembered those words, just as I'll always remember you, Ghastly. Che la terra ti sia lieve.


    - @Dynamo


    Matthew Krehbiel

    November 5, 1990 - November 21, 2022