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Scythe X. Episodes 1-2

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The third installment of the Scythe series. This will be released on an episode basis.


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galileo31dos01

   1 of 1 member found this review helpful 1 / 1 member

Done on HMP/continuous/saves.

 

Echoing what Spectre01 said, this is a fantastic set of classic Scythe maps. As short as it is, I had quite a lot of fun revisiting Alm's style. The maps are all beautifully designed with tech/space ambients, small layouts for short gameplay. You can also see at the end what could have been the theme of the next episode(s). The music selection is neat, with map 10 having my favourite one (I just love mysterious tracks c:).

 

For combat and monster placement, it's obvious that the wad is unfinished, the two episodes are clearly early combat against low and mid-tiers, presenting a few instances of high-tiers, something that the other Scythe's did too. Not the whole bestiary shows up, there are even some surprises, which emphasizes the wad's absense of further episodes (Circle of Death crashes the moment you wake the arachnotrons up). It's still great quality though, provides easy to medium fights, some teleport traps and a few lock-ins in darkness. 

 

Secret-wise, Alm used mostly the same kind of textures (or similar ones) to use as switches. It's not always intuitive as to which "specific texture" opens the secret, so I had to wall-hump a bit. Regardless, always generous rewards. 

 

Can't pick favourite maps, as all play more or less the same, probably map 10 which was hilarious at first and then, the surprises. 

 

Yeah, this needs more maps! But we get what we get, and I highly recommend it, at least to encourage Alm to make the megawad... uh, whatever XD. My rate is 10/10.

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Guest

Unknown date

   0 of 2 members found this review helpful 0 / 2 members
The texturing SUCKS. Erik Alm, what did you smoke when you textured this? Big disappointment after Scythe2. 2/5

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The_SloVinator

  

Played on UV.

 

The Good

Brilliant details & textures, challenging & fair difficulty.

 

The Bad

Sad this won't ever be completed. It's nearly 10 years old.

 

In summation

Play it! Ten maps of goodness!

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Spectre01

  
Fantastic start to what could have been a legendary megawad. Hopefully Mr. Alm gets around to finish it.

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NuMetalManiak

  
*waits for new episodes and collapses*
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Guest

  
very good level

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Budoka

  
Pure eye candy as usual with the scythe series, although it doesn't reach the immersion level of Scythe 2. Of course, the gameplay is high quality, with one caveat: whereas the first two Scythes are known to be amongst the most grueling megawads out there (I'm ignoring super-slaughter collections like Sunder or Chillax as those target a niche audience),most of this one is two easy. Only the last 2 maps throw on brutal challenges out of nowhere (do consider that I had to utterly butcher MAP10 to clear it).

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Guest

  
It's a shame that Erik Alm didn't end up finishing this. Feels like Scythe 1's gameplay mixed with 2's aesthetics. Great overall.
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Guest

Unknown date

  
Good short (or barely medium) levels with quality gameplay/architectur e and fitting music. Erik delivers once more, good luck on future episodes! 4.5(5)/5

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Guest

Unknown date

  
I'M WAITING FOR THE SEQUELS AND THEN SCYTHE LEGENDS, THEN SCYTHE BATTLE NETWORK. Joking aside, this is love in WAD form. ***** ~CSon

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Guest

Unknown date

  
this was an outstanding wad had fun playing it i really like the space like feel to it and Erik should really consider making more of these great MEGAWADS there really good.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Outstanding quality levels, very fun gameplay, surprisingly tough challenges at times, well hidden and clever secrets, interesting new monsters, amazing work with themes... the list just goes on. 5*, no questions. -Phobus

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Guest

Unknown date

  
awesome wad!!! erik is the master 5/5 is a shame that is incomplete

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Great level design, great gameplay, nice music, and perfect pacing. It doesn't get much better than this folks! The atmosphere is great too. The last map had my heart racing! Lighting in Software mode is orgasmic.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Man, I love how Erik Alm just keeps outdoing himself. This tiny collection of excellent maps needs to be completed, considering it has the potential to become one of the best wads of all time. Looks like the Scythe series keep getting better, the first Scythe was awesome, Scythe 2 was even better (legendary status), and this one would be utter perfection if it was complete. The map design is so superb I can't even describe it. It's been way too long since he started this wad, I hope we'll see more of it.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
It's rare to find such a great balance of wonderful aesthetic and architecture, with fun (fair-minded) gameplay. Great music, too.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
A disappointment compared to the first two parts. Only ten maps. Design is very beautiful, but gameplay and difficulty are a bit poor. Only maps 8 and 9 are very good. 3/5

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Maps 01-05 were all pretty awesome, but 06-10 made me fucking cream my jeans. Goddamn.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Just finished testing the wad (ie passing through in god mode :P) A really great wad I can barely wait for the whole thing *¬*

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Guest

Unknown date

  
The levels themselves are very "meh". Very gray and dark most of the time, except for the last 2 levels. The layouts were also very meh. It was also incredibly easy. I know it was only a few levels, but I was able to blow through them on UV in about 45 minutes with zero deaths. I miss the "Man against all Hell" feeling of the previous scythes. The music was pretty grating too. I had to turn it off after a few levels. This one doesn't live up to the scythe name. So far.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
These maps just don't do much for me. the theme is too monotonous, the battles are not particularly memorable, the health is too skimpy, and the powerups are too rare. I like more variety in all accounts. 2/5 NT

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Erik Alm strikes yet again. This is just superbly honed gameplay and design through and through. I can only hope that he releases more wads in the future because he is one of the most consistant of all. 5/5 no question. -TRRobin

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Great mapset. I have no idea why, but I think it lacks the x-factor of the other two Scythes. "Technically" there's nothing wrong with it though, and I can't think of any kind of rational reason why I think it isn't as good as the other two. =p 4/5

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Well, as always with this, i am going to love it and try it. 5/5 for win!

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Doomkid

Unknown date

  
What a treat, I never knew there was another Scythe!

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  • File Reviews

    • By galileo31dos01 · Posted
      Done on UV/continuous/saves.   This is a fine story-telling megawad. Aesthetically, I don't have much to complain, the new textures, while not being the best looking, succeed in their context, and I was more fond of the second episode (newer maps) where I noticed an advance in terms of visuals. Tons of eye candies, such as frozen or burning marines, waving flags, boxes on false conveyors, portraits of monsters, and much more. All these little details are rarely seen in other wads, one just doesn't see a machine that produces cacodemons every day, that's one the funniest things I've ever seen in a Doom wad. About light variation, the author played a lot with darkness, most if not all the maps have various sections where it's quite dark to see what's going on. This can be a disadvantage against enemies, particularly hitscanners, caution is suggested in these cases, or gamma correction. However, darkness in caves was visually pleasing, personally speaking, and you'll probably deal with it better than the poor marines that hold the candles. The music selection is generally cool, but some midis are way too loud.    On a gameplay side, unless you check the release date, this could totally pass as a wad from the 90s. What I mean is, there's clearly a focus on adventure+action, and while I'm not very familiar with old FPS games, this felt at times like playing a total conversion. Your objective is to punish the scientist for bringing hell into earth, so this guy is the new enemy, which you'll meet at many points and will teleport out of the place upon killing him. The combat is mostly incidental, a great portion are hitscanners of all sizes, plus a few traps here and there, either with monsters or things. The thing is the pistol starts, more often you'll start with shotgunners or chaingunners in front of you, which you'll have to trade guns with first, something very common in old wads. It's not always easy to find important resources, like armor or blur spheres, and ranged weapons usage is limited overall. I had no issues with grinding through tanky monsters with only hitscan weapons, but that may not be suitable for other people. About the weapons, I mostly liked the flamethrower and crossbow (plasma rifle and rocket launcher respectively), the AK47 was cool too, but the sound was kinda annoying at times. Double shotguns were awkward to use, due to the sprite frames being mirrored shotguns. Last but not least, the flamegrenades, these weren't as bad as others implied, I found them powerful, much like rockets but faster and effective at close range, perhaps they should have been way more potent, to one-shot barons or archviles for example, given they occupy the seventh slot... Anyway, the maps are built so progression goes on par with the story, there's linearity above all, but an interesting side of it is how the layouts lead the player to previously explored territories, nothing about going from one extreme to the other, except one or two maps. The rest is to recognize the switches and doors, which aren't always so obvious.   The secrets are very important, like I said before, when there are tons of hitscanners, the best shield is a blur sphere. Unfortunately, it's hard to spot a single secret in this mapset. Some are hidden behind random non-hinted walls, others via crossing certain linedefs, which then have you backtracking all the way to the start. A few maps have unreachable sectors marked as secrets for whatever reason. Whatever, no favourite maps this time, since I liked and disliked them all pretty much the same way.    Overall, not too exciting, or recommended to everyone. I had fun probably because of playing on continuous, which made the starts more bearable against hitscan attrition. So, if anything I said above sounds good for you then try it. My rate is 6/10. 
    • By Meril · Posted
      Design and archiecture - wow! But gameplay is a bit worse. Map is large and confusing. Cyberdemon in dungeon part is in my opinion imposible, becouse you need to go back there, and then he waits in front of elevator... Minor issue in room next to exit door, if you get in there and don't have key, you are stucked. Difficulty is HARD. I had problem to finish it in HMP. Overall: Good visuals, gameplay ok, but with minor issues, good 1995 wad!
    • By Walter confetti · Posted
      A really extremely useful little wad patcher from the 90s, still using it for compiling many wads in one single file, works great for dosbox, it not works on more modern "dos" versions, like windows prompt command. A must in for everyone!
    • By Agent6 · Posted
      Another classic megawad has been finished.   Since it's obviously going to be compared with Alien Vendetta, one of the first things I noticed during the progression is that it's pretty well balanced, there's no surprise levels where the difficulty spikes, it's consistent from start to finish. It has aged well, perhaps even a tad better than AV, but there isn't really anything remarkable about the layout or the texturing of the levels, and as expected the gameplay is the focus which, for the majority of Hell Revealed, is solid. However, there are a map or two which have mediocre gameplay, most notably MAP18 Hard Attack. The problem of this map are the ill designed enemy encounters, which take place in a few cramped spaces at the beginning, and the focal point of the map relies on an extremely poor kind of infighting. You have to climb a wall using an elevator, and the said wall is full of Revenants, Hell Knights, and Barons. The most efficient and economical method of passing this area seems to be allowing the Cyberdemon to take care of the enemies who come down when you activate the elevator, but takes a lot of time, not to mention that there are a few waves of enemies, at least one when you need to reach a room, and another one after you return from it. There are also 4 Cyberdemons in a room with a switch who keep teleporting and occasionally fire a rocket at you. At least it's a rather short level which looks decent at the very least, but these are the only qualities of the level...   Either way, with the exception of MAP18 there aren't any other poorly designed levels, all the others are fine and fun enough, save for, perhaps, a few rooms here and there that are almost completely dark in MAP26 and MAP29. MAP26 also features ghost Imps and an intriguing design, seemingly taking place somewhere in space, but extra care is advised here since loads of enemies are present and the encounters themselves are rather brutal. However, the usage of the previously mentioned ghost Imps is not very good. In fact, Icarus did a better job with them in a map which used ghost enemies for almost its entirety. Here, they're little more than an annoyance. They don't add much to the experience and also feel out of place, an attempt at adding something more unique and unexpected that ultimately doesn't pay off.   The levels are more or less created in slaughter style, therefore they all share a couple hundreds of enemies but the numbers don't go into the thousands from what I remember. Some of the encounters are rather merciless, and the authors surely loved using Hell Knights, Barons and especially Arch-Viles, this combination being one of the toughest in Hell Revealed. And towards the end the Cyberdemons make a significant amount of appearances, but shotgunning them was quite fun, and more exciting than Barons. You could also rely on the Rocket Launcher and the BFG to take them out, but the maps don't seem to offer enough ammo so that you can keep using them for almost their entirety, and that's actually a good thing, it wouldn't be fun otherwise. On the other hand, they most certainly offer copious amounts of shotgun shells.   My favorite level is probably going to be MAP28. It's a rather short and straightforward level despite its size, but I enjoyed the atmosphere of the map and the textures used, and it was neither very difficult or easy. This level is followed closely by MAP16 which features lots of browns and red, but not particularly exciting encounters so it doesn't stand out in this respect. Still, I loved its look and overall gameplay nonetheless, there's some really beautiful bloodfalls, although technically there are better maps in the megawad. MAP30 of Hell Revealed is a typical Icon of Sin level, but it's a fitting conclusion to the journey.   While the encounters are generally good, certain enemies are underused, while others are overused. Hell Revealed seems to mostly rely on boss tier or just generally tough enemies. This means that enemies such as the Arachnotrons, Chaingunners, Zombiemen, Shotgun Guys, Spectres, Pinkies, and Imps are encountered much less frequent than Hell Knights, Barons, Revenants, Arch-Viles, Mancubi, and Cyberdemons, with the Pain Elementals and thus Lost Souls on the middle ground. If you hate hitscanners or otherwise just these enemies in general you're probably going to like this, however due to overusing the strongest demons the encounters do become predictable, and on a few occasions boring. Luckily, their placement and usage is still good most of the time so the encounters themselves are still exciting, preventing them from falling into boredom, keeping you focused and careful, yet they could've used more variety. This is something that AV avoided and in consequence, the enemy usage there is slightly superior.   The megawad also introduces a few new music tracks which are combined with the vanilla Doom soundtrack, so it's not a complete replacement. It also features a new red status bar, intermission screen, menu background, ENDOOM screen, and a couple new sky textures which are just gorgeous. However, there are no new sounds or enemies introduced.   As about the difficulty, having played Alien Vendetta as well as Ancient Aliens before (and I must mention that AA tops both AV and Hell Revealed) it wasn't very difficult for me, except for the occasional unforgiving encounters. Despite this, it's certainly not targeted at average players but most certainly can be completed by them, even on UV since it's not nuts, regardless of whether you're going for it blind or not. It also doesn't involve a lot of trial and error, especially compared to the other 2 megawads I've already mentioned, save for MAP24 perhaps, which takes a while to understand the first time you're playing it, but after that it's fine. It's perfect for experienced players but in no way impossible or ridiculously hard for everyone else.   All things considered, it's a solid classic that's definitely worthy of its status. It's fun, challenging, beautiful, but most of all fair, and it has aged pretty well, some of the levels doing this even better than AV, although I consider the latter superior overall, which is why I'm giving Hell Revealed 4/5 stars, while Alien Vendetta got 5/5. And despite my comparisons between the two, I'd very much let them stand on their own and speak for themselves.
    • By Summer Deep · Posted
      Pretty decent stuff. Over 200 monsters, and you might take two or three attempts to complete it without saving, especially if you don't locate the blue armour, which is fairly well concealed.   The only things which annoyed me about this were the fact that I never worked out how to get the chaingun, thus having to fire bullets solely with the pistol, and also that there was a small nukage pool which looked like an interesting place to explore, but turned out to be inescapable...
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