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Congestion 1024

   (115 reviews)
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32 maps no bigger than 1024 X 1024. Some maps have areas outside the 1024 X 1024 block but they are not part of the playing area. The idea was to focus on quick and fun gameplay.


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CapnClever

·

  

Playability notes: Everything works fine in PrBoom+ with -complevel 9. Pistol start on each map is recommended by the text file.

 

Congestion 1024 is the first of its kind, at least in megawad form, and it triumphantly conveys how unrefined the craft of packing a map into a small space was at the time. As with many limitation projects, it contains notable examples in regards to visual complexity, but a dynamic gameplay experience in such confined compartments must be difficult to achieve if this set is anything to go by. There are a few diamonds in the rough, but the rough is rough indeed.

 

The concept itself is quite simple: limit the player's area to a 1024x1024-unit square. While enemies and architecture can extend wherever it is desired, the player must not be allowed to step foot beyond their relatively small enclosure. For an example of how little this is to work with, I present Doom II's MAP07, Dead Simple:

Spoiler

MAP07_map.png

The available area is not the outer square, which is available by the end of the map; nor is it the square within that, which is what the player has available to them from the start of the map. Every map in Congestion 1024 confines the player's movement to the square circumscribing the exit and the four mancubus turret squares (in actuality this square is 960x1088, ignoring the lips, but the surface area is about the same). It's a hefty burden, but the goal should be (as with any limitation project) to create a level that plays without the player noticing any limitation at all: here, the player should feel like they can go anywhere, even though there is only a small space to actually go.

 

Unfortunately, as I anticipated even before playing, many of the levels expose their bottled, boxy boundaries quite brashly. Some even go so far as to abandon typical mapping fundamentals to desperately squeeze their idealized map, tighter and tighter, until it's crushed and crumpled beyond recognition. However, in spite of this expectation, I was impressed by several maps that expertly provided space and progression to the player.

 

Highlights:

  • MAP02 and MAP04 are a step in the right direction, with layouts that keep your focus on the action rather than the limited motion. MAP08 and MAP11 are contrary to this direction, as there is plenty of action available but far too little area to enjoy it.
  • If I recommend outright avoiding maps: MAP09, MAP13, MAP14, and MAP22. These aren't even tiny rooms connected by tiny hallways, but the opposite: hallways upon hallways, with the occasional room to break up the monotony. MAP13 in particular is titled "The Focus II" and it's embarrassing to believe that it was in any way inspired by the original.
  • MAP15, MAP32, MAP17, and MAP28, on the other hand, are all worth a playthrough (two of those levels are part of the demo reel). They're constrained without being cramped, and difficult purely from a dynamic standpoint.
  • MAP07, MAP16, MAP27, MAP30, and (eventually) MAP21 are arena encounters ala Dead Simple. Of these, MAP16 is the most interesting, as the intensity increases over time and can be taken at a variable pace.

 

I recommend skipping around with pistol starts: MAP01-MAP06, MAP15-MAP20 (including secrets), and MAP25-MAP28 are the most interesting stretches of at least decent maps.

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NuMetalManiak

  
the classic 1024 map, many maps play quite well, others get cramped really fast.

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Spectre01

  
It's ok tbh. Very few maps are actually memorable and a lot of the gameplay is annoying rather than difficult. Still some good maps here and a nice OST. 2.44/5

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Combinebobnt

  
Pretty good for the limitation. Some maps were extremely cramped in movement however.

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Guest

  
1024 was a good starting point in 2005 but it does lead to crampedness that will annoy some. So I think nowadays 2048 is the more balanced limit (which has me interested in PCCP2, but that's for another topic). Plenty of nice maps here still, if you don't feel too cramped - and a good debut into the whole limited map space concept that still shows up from time to time a decade later.

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Unknown date

  
Now, this is very inventive in demonstrating how a level can be great even with little room available. If only it had been playtested a bit more... 'Cause balance is fairly off in the latest levels. A well deserved 4 stars, though. -- x_MaimerFagen_x

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Unknown date

  
You thought Alien Vendetta was good? This wad freakin kicks its ass. Alien Vendetta had good maps but not all were good and it didn't keep my attention for long. When I begin playing this, I couldn't stop! The maps arent too big or too small and the atmosphere is great and level design is so damn detailed.

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Unknown date

  
Thanks for the Wad! :D! I LOVE DOOM! Are you guys still working on wads? :o

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Unknown date

  
No less than awesome. -Tango

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Unknown date

  
Lots of fun, memorable little maps. Something about this style of map is just so much fun to play. Can't remember any bad maps here, only lots of excellent ones. MAP32 aka Nullspace Junior, however, is the only one that meets Scythe 2 quality and is one of the very best Doom maps ever released. Astonishing visual design, and superb gameplay. 5/5

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Unknown date

  
32 maps of awesomeness. Never would have guessed that small maps could be this fun. 5/5 -Dancso

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Unknown date

  
This is an interesting concept, some of the maps are good and I had fun with them, some were too easy (all maps until 9, excepting 7), some were TOO FUCKING HARD (10,11 and 12) as I was very low on health most of time in these maps, I kept dying (around 20-30 times) because there was no health around and kept me starting some levels with very low HP if I managed surviving! At least ArchViles in later levels weren't a problem. Played with AEOD 6.02. Final verdict: 4/5 -Doomer95

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Unknown date

  
I like it! But why is it not in the megawad section?

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Unknown date

  
Wow what a fun megawad, one of the best ones I've played recently. Each level here is short but quite detailed, and not too hard with some great gameplay. I'm about halfway through the set right now, the only one I really didn't like much was MAP11, couldn't figure it out for the life of me and was just uncomfortable. I highly recommend this to people who have short attention spans, like me. :D 5/5

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Unknown date

  
This was awesome. Small-medium sized maps rule! 5/5

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Unknown date

  
Three maps of this set made PrBoom crash, so I cannot comment on them. The rest was really great, though. Definitely one of this year's best! -- 5/5

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Unknown date

  
The maps may be small, but the are full of incredible details and fantastic gameplay!

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Unknown date

  
On paper it doesn't sound like much...turn up the hardness with -fast and pistol starts and you have an interesting challenge. Some maps struggle for ammo (and map 10 doesn't have enough without the secret) but aside from that pretty good. I'm sure it would fail hard if not played from pistol start though.

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Unknown date

  
Masterpiece in little size! - Daimon

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Unknown date

  
Awesome! This is one of my favourites. *****

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Unknown date

  
Easter eggs in Map 22 are a riot!

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Unknown date

  
Very good wad, just played through it. My favourite maps are Focus 2, House of Shadows, Monday Morning (because all three consist mostly of narrow passages, making the map seem much larger than it is) and Bantam, because the medieval theme reminded me of Quake. I did notice that towards the end the project seemed to have run out of steam a bit. The maps were still pretty, but they were nothing more than very small Doom2 maps with nothing to make them stand out from the crowd. Still worth a 5/5 though.

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Unknown date

  
This is one of my all-time favourites! 5/5 - Svartravn S

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Unknown date

  
One of now two excellent megawads in this style; this one is a bit inferior to the other one (Claustrophobia) on detail, but it still looks pretty nice and plays just as well. I really love the 1024 concept of maps; short, refreshing, but sometimes intense levels. 5/5, easily.

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Unknown date

  
Nice, and thats putting it lightley

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