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By Catpho · PostedThe first truly mature map of yakfak's. The puzzly, "inner logic" map mechanisms and scavenger, dungeon rat gameplay of their previous levels Meep Keep & Hexasketch returns, but whereas those can feel clunky and barebone at points despite the strong authorial voice, here it is fully fleshed out: the setting is evocative, the construction shows the strong command of shapes that defines yakfak's later works, the item placement and layout bends and loops in complicated and surprising ways, the level's moment-to-moment gameplay is filled with a sense of discovery and wonder. Job has a strong hook in its text file, but what players might not realize is that they must really hang on to every word in its description to even be aware of the level's main concept. In Never_Again's in-depth review for /newsuff (which I highly recommend for details or if you are feeling stuck), he mentions being locked out if you took the "easy" route out, but I feel that's incomplete, as the real reason hinges on the player being conscious of what they are doing in a representationalist sense. In other words, to be able to reach your dream, you shouldn't just interact and go everywhere at random, but try to think about what you are doing in the context of the game's world. The solution will be clear if you square it with what yakfak hints at. There are complications: the in-game hint system of crosses and arrows are counter-intuitive, and exploration will eventually lead you to the combat zone, which itself is a puzzle unravel as supplies require routing and withholding combat through treacherous enemy placement, with only a berserked fist as defense (HMP or below is strongly recommended). In my own experience, it was fun but exhausting to make it through to the AV-guarded yellow key and slowly solve the piece, but I got massively demoralized when I read Never_Again's review that I had already locked myself out of the second half of the map. It was only when I was showcasing the Doomcute in this map to someone else that the level's inner logic finally clicked, and after some experimentation, which was much smoother thanks to me already being aware of the level's layout and lingering mysteries, I managed to solve it. The feeling of "lore" behind the level's trials and tribulations is my favorite thing about Job, and I wish it didn't take a review for me to "get it". In terms of intriguing combat, intricate moments, or imaginative layout and visuals, I think zzzv tops themself in (woefully underrated) levels like Spidersilk, Nato, and Northern Powerhouse. Nevertheless, an essential stop for yakfak fans, and a memorable journey for those who look for Doom off the beaten path.
By Garlichead · PostedInfinity is the third chapter of the Serenity Series. Originally released in 1995 as a replacement for episode 1 of Doom. It consists of 8 vanilla compatible maps (no secret map). I played the episode on Ultra Violence using Woof on *vanilla* compatibility setting. The average difficulty is higher than Doom 1, but for the wrong reasons. The maps relies on, such things as mandatory damaging floors (which are recurrent on this series), abundance of sergeants and a lack of armor and health all through it. The previous entry had these issues on some of the maps, with map 2 and 3 being the biggest offenders; so I guess it is characteristic of the Serenity wads. Infinity follows the tradition of the previous entry with the use of copyright music. The episode includes an eclectic mix of tracks by C+C Music Factory, Miles Davis, Michael Jackson among others. The renditions are not bad, and give the wad a nostalgic feeling of early hackers coming up with maps for what was once was an emerging new video game genre The maps are a little basic for todays standards but they are still fun to play. One most approach to this old wads with the mindset that you are exploring an old design. They are not as polished as todays designs, the fun comes out of exploring them as a product from their times. 1. **Switch bored?**: a short romp through a wood base. Good use of shotgunners a couple of fun ambushes. The map is a little low on health and has some mandatory damaging floors which can get you killed depending on the hitscanners fights go. *Switch bored?* has the strange habit of having secrets thrown around on the normal route.
2. **Say jazz to another excess**: a shotgunner heavy map set on a tech installation. The most memorable section being a maze full of elevators which makes you choose between different tunnels. The rocket launcher and the baron of hell are introduced on this level. For being such as a hitscanner level it is certainly missing some armor or medipacks.
3. **Beat it!:** The best level so far. Aesthetically it is all over the place combining tech sections with wood and marble, but from a gameplay perspective it much more forgiving than the last two. The plasma rifle and green armor are finally introduced here. Similarly to the first level it is full of nonsensical secrets which are flagged as you progress.
4. **Everybody frag now:** Combat heavy scenario, simple buy very fun. The BFG is introduced on this level albeit I did not got a chance to use it. There is an interesting section near the start in which you fight enemies inside a waist level maze.
5. **Dungeons of doom:** Sewer kind of level. Very easy and combat oriented, due to the cell ammo you receive. Very nice ambient song.
6. **Who's afraid of red, yellow and blue?:** after the triad of combat heavy maps this one is much slower paced and puzzle oriented. Doomguy explores a very abstract map while trying to find the necessary keys to get out. Did not like this one very much.
7. **Blaze of glory:** an ok level. Not very memorable.
8. **Stargate into infinity:** an arena shootout level. Nice design in which the main arena expands during the fight. It tricks in to believing that the bruiser brothers will be the final boss, nut once they are killed the level opens up for one final section. Is it worth playing Infinity today? It depends. The levels are basic and occasionally difficult for silly reasons, while also being short and charming in their own quirky way. Compared to some other maps from 1994 and 1995 this one is not as polished as Fava Beans or Slaughter Until Death but it is certainly better than something like Serenity. On the other hand, if you compare this to todays maps there are some design decisions which are not expected after almost 30 years of mapping. The (ocasional) lack of health and the mandatory exploration through damaging floors can get on your nerves easily. Compared to some other stuff from the early nineties this gets 4/5 stars, compare with some map sets from today it would be around 3/5.