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Vanguard

   (148 reviews)

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7 Screenshots

About This File

12 Boom format levels for PrBoom+, ZDoom, or Eternity. A bonus 13th level is included for laughs. Inspired by Speed of Doom, Scythe 2, Alien Vendetta, and Plutonia.

Originally Vanguard was intended to be a 32-level speedmapped megawad inspired by Speed of Doom's development cycle and Scythe 2's episodic structure.


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Poncho

  

Vanguard is, in my opinion, the single greatest solo project for Doom ever made. With this particular WAD, skillsaw pretty much made a name for himself, and for good reason.

 

The WAD is split up into a few episodes (three to be exact - nature, techbase and hell). Every map looks great and the detail doesn't go batshit overboard, and nor does the difficulty. See, the thing about Vanguard that makes it so enjoyable is that it's not too hard. None of the levels - with the partial exception of Map11 - are truly challenging. They ARE, but in a very fun and very fair way. The traps are set up so that you can potentially beat them when you first trigger said trap (unlike a Ribbiks level where you'll most likely die trying).

 

Map01 is a nice, short, easy jog through some ruins, with a combo of Berserk and gun action. Map02 is, in my opinion, one of the weaker levels, but is by no means bad. The enemy placement is perhaps the most annoying of the WAD, but still functions well enough to be a bit tough and still very manageable. The ways you can access parts of the map is quite cool. Map03 (13 Angry Archviles) is a gimmick map done right. With its suspense-building music and interesting, engaging scenarios, this is one of the best maps of the set. Map04 is another trek through some natural ruins of some sort, like a castle ruin. The open areas make combat difficult, but never impossible of course, and if you possess maybe a braincell or two, you should still be able to conquer this map. The ending's very unexpected, but fun. Map05 is our first taste of slaughter; a Spider Mastermind, several teleporting Archviles and plenty of low-tier enemies to be killed. It's a fun rush of a level, easily beatable in a short time.

 

The second episode starts, obviously, with Map06, a mostly Tyson affair. Unlike other Tyson maps (I'm looking at you, Speed of Doom Map01), this is a rather relaxing take on the Berserk-only gimmick. By the end of the level, you should have enough ammo to use some shells. Next, Map07 is a take on Dead Simple, but a really fun one! Super fast-paced, dangerous if you're not paying attention and just plain fun, this is again one of the highlights of the WAD. After that, we have our obligatory crate level in the form of Map08. Navigation isn't too frustrating, and the only Archviles of the map are in the same area and easily killable. The cavern section and the ending battles are among the toughest, but the way these areas have been designed makes the fights a blast. Then... Map09 is next. It's a semi-slaughter level, and happens to be one of my favourite maps of all time. The Rise of the Triad music fits perfectly, the shift from narrow working tunnels to full-on car parks and surburbs is cool and the gameplay is fun as fuck, no doubt because of the given weapons and ammo, as well as powerups. The way you can use infighting to your advantage makes the whole affair cooler. The final level in the techbase episode - Map10 - is a proper slaughtermap, with over 800 enemies. The different areas all provide different challenges, and can all be tackled at any point, and in any order, which makes replayability more abundant (is that the right word?). Despite the fact that there are quite a few Cyberdemons (and high-tier enemies in general), the ammo and health distribution is adequate and makes for a good challenge. And then, of course, suicide exit.

 

Finally, we begin our hell episode with Map11, arguably the hardest map in the WAD. The orange colours are truly a great touch. On top of that, the tapestry-like design is just astonishing... as are the enemies. My goodness, the traps in this map are simply deadly, none more so than the final trap. Before that, we have a pillar room fight (the beginning, that is), a precarious battle in a rocky terrain outdoors, a claustrophobic battle with swarms of monsters in a pit of some sort and the final battle, which is again a wave-based fight. All these encounters require the utmost concentration, but with skill (rather than luck), you should prevail. Then we have our final proper stage, Map12, once again a slaughtermap. This is significantly easier than the last level, but by no means "facil". The chasm design makes it feel like you're going deeper into hell, and the increasing enemy density makes the battles more interesting, especially when the Archviles start teleporting in to undo all your hard work. It isn't annoying though, since the amount of chaos - whether it be you with your own arsenal or infighting - will either wound or kill the AVs and / or the resurrected enemies. It really is remarkable.

 

Map13 (Punchout) is a joke level that nicely ends the WAD, where you Tyson your way through low to mid-tier enemies before killing a Romero head. Really nice and funny.

 

So, all-in-all, Vanguard has super-fun encounters, great design, great progress in terms of difficulty, fantastic enemy and item distribution and brilliant choices for music. What isn't there to love?

 

The Good Maps: All of them!

 

Overall, I give Vanguard a full 4 / 4 (obviously a 5 / 5). This is classic status! Worship this WAD!!!

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Gallic00

  

One of my favorites mapsets that I go to again and again when I need to remember how good can Doom be.

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Killer5

  
Sick wad.

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Darkrai

  
absolutely amazing to play, i especially loved Map 13 because it is amazingly designed and for some reason i just really like hell themed levels. A must play

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Spectre01

  
Really fun mapset with excellent gameplay variety and music. A bit on the easy side, but hey, not every wad needs to bust your balls to have a good time playing it.

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Walter confetti

  
Very good and solid mapset, had fun playing it!

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Budoka

  
05/21/15. Vanguard rightfully earned its place as king of the archive. It's a mix of everything that single-player Pwads have to offer: Ordinary maps, a couple gimmick maps which actually work very well, a surprisingly enjoyable Berserk map, and, of course, slaughter maps. Gameplay-wise, every single map is top quality. There isn't a single turd among the lot. As a cherry on top, the architecture is drop dead gorgeous even now. Anyone who happens to own Doom 2 must play Vanguard.

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Ezepov

  
Super

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Tezur0

  
If you like slaughtermaps - it is worth your time.

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AdamAK

  
This mapset is a gigantic pile of shit. The first 3 maps are fun, and then it turns into a BFG spamfest. There is no gameplay in this bullcrap. I'd give this pile of trash a negative score if I could.

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Guest

  
Another excellent offering from Skillsaw, one of the best modern DOOM mappers. The layouts, gameplay, texture choices, detailing, and music all come together perfectly to create an engrossing DOOM experience. Very, very impressive. 5/5, a legendary wad from Skillsaw.

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Deeforce

  
^@person above me^-gameplay is perfect! Vanguard. I wished there would be more serious wads like Vanguard! It would be stupid to rate this below 5 stars, really! More of these wads like Vanguard, the best you can get! Like Scythe 2!

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Challenging and visually inspiring... Fantastic wad overall.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Fuckin' cool, man! 4,5 star.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Brilliant work. Highly enjoyable levels (visibly inspired by Plutonia in the beginning in particular), but what really stood out to me was the music, too - among the best I've ever heard in a DOOM (mega)wad. 5/5 - ZZ

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Love it!

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Guest

Unknown date

  
It was great from start to finish. Nice levels and challenge. The music was good but we've all heard it before in other releases in the past. Still it suited each map. MAP11 and 12 were God-like!, talk about something totally original here. Great work!! *****

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Guest

Unknown date

  
like Scythe 2 all over again. *****

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purist

Unknown date

  
Very good. The Scythe 2 inspiration was evident and the layouts were very well designed. Some neat ideas in there too - purist 4/5.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
2013??? but it's already the beginning of 2012 and can't wait. :(I guess I will play what is now but still 5/5 stars

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Guest

Unknown date

  
nigga dis da shit

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Guest

Unknown date

  
I smell a cacoward for this wad. ;)

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Guest

Unknown date

  
This is about as close to a perfect release as they come. Doomworld needs a 6-star rating because Lunatic is easily 5 stars in my view yet even that can hardly compare to this. 5(6)/5 - MegaDoomer

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Just great.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
jajaja.. que puta locura. Crazy slaughter.

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  • File Reviews

    • By Erick · Posted
      Fun map that captures a nice TNT-ish feel with plenty of weird yet also nice looking rooms, groups of hitscanners and demons to blast through, and a sense of adventure to it. Taking the MAP14 slot, you would see the episode 2 skybox of TNT: Evilution and listen to the track "Cold Subtleness", both creating a nice atmosphere to the map. Worth checking out!
    • By Player Lin · Posted
      Doesn't like the layout and monster replacements, I didn't found RL until got the yellow key and found a lot of rockets, the location where RL is confusing me, and it also not fun when you get kicked down from the cliffs by Revenants, Mancubus and Archviles after the way to Blue key door, the way to the teleporter just far enough to kill you if not killed by monsters which kicked you down. Final timed puzzle room just nasty as the cyberdemon and archvile fights in the same place, not sure why make the level so big but can't make the fights with them also on bigger place too?   It's not bad level but I'm sure the frustration level is sky high, and not sure the slopes from ZDooM do anything good to this level too.
    • By Player Lin · Posted
      Normally, I don't like DooM (1 or UD) WADs because I tired shooting baddies with shotgun as most of them tend put a lot of shotgun guys/ammo and I have shot those full of shotty shit...well, this one can't escaped from that but I found author's tricky as I didn't found many of them(or they placed when I needed to use shotty), also the monster placements(with middle-tier ones) in this megawad helped too, even E1 doesn't suffers low-tier ammo-droping-fest unlike IWAD and most PWADs.   Level layouts and theme are interesting, some E3 levels just a little mazed but I feel okay, never get lost...many levels I feel plays like IWAD but better and larger, you'll found middle-tier monsters in E1 levels and it helps the gameplay, unlike the IWAD you'll have too much ammo in every level even pistol start, if you wasted too much and will out of ammo for sure(at least in UV).   All I can say about this megawad is...fun,  vanilla fun. Except E3M8, the yellow key area with platforming when all enemies + 4 cyberdemons are try to kill me and battles-of-deal-with-4-cyberdemons-or/and-other-powerful-monsters are nasty to me, on top of them, the final "BOSS"...I feel trolled...really? IoS-style?? IT'S ****ING DOOM, NOT DOOM 2 WHY USE IOS-STYLE AS FINAL BOSS?!  :P (At least there is no respawning monster cubes just annoying cyberdemons and barons...but they're still give me a lot of headaches as the battle area isn't very huge and a little cramped I think...)   But at least IDMUS11 helps me dealt with those problems all, for some reasons I feel the main theme of Power Ranger does fit DooM...don't know why but I keep switch to the theme with IDMUS11 cheat if I don't like the level's music, helps me blast through this megawad and the nasty E3M8. :P
    • By Doomkid · Posted
      Download the REAL file here (rd1.zip is NOT correct) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/doom2/megawads/d64d2   Shocked to see so many negative reviews. I had an absolute blast with this one, and I'm not sure what Nems was talking about with the Boom stuff as this runs in Doom2.exe with no trouble. In fact, there is a TON of impressive vanilla stuff going on here. I guess it was so well done that it tricked him.   This deserves a high score. It's a lot of fun.
    • By Rimantas · Posted
      It definitely makes Doom look darker, but also slightly changes colors (it reminds me PSX Doom). I prefer original Doom colors and miss how it looked on CRT (almost same colors as with modern monitors, but less brightness and maybe more contrast).
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