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Lunatic

   (104 reviews)

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9 Screenshots

About This File

The moon's orbit was slowed due to a headon collision with a giant ball of demons. Escape the moon before it crashes into the Earth!

Lunatic includes 5 Boom-format maps for Doom 2. Please play Lunatic with PrBoom+, Zdoom, or Eternity.


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gemini0

  

Very fun and fair mapset with an excellent ending. I was grinning like an idiot while mowing down the imps and waiting for the rocket to be ready to launch!

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.lypi

  

love the aesthetic of this wad

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Lebsrostla Halabala

  

My fave Skillsaw wad. Quite short, not extra difficult and gorgeous. 

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deleted.

· Edited by a.a.i.

  

.

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El Juancho

  

nice

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xX_Lol6_Xx

  

This is and will always be my favorite map, awesome levels, textures, music and two new monsters!

 

It really makes you think you're in the moon.

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baja blast rd.

·

  

since this came out, the moon look has been explored with more ornament and grandeur to it. (examples are Valiant by the same author and the single level Man on the Moon by Yugiboy85.) it's easy to write off Lunatic as slightly dated, with its sparkly clean CC4-tex look feeling like a design relic of the time.

 

imo that would be a mistake. Lunatic has a great trick that the secret mysterious Doominati wants to charge you recurring payments of $19.99 for. throughout, there are a lot of cool, memorable "events" that I'd describe as cinematic. they are kind of like cutscenes, telling a ministory through motion and change, without of course stealing the controls away. their periodic appearances give Lunatic the vibe of a lived-in movie -- which, as an incidental bonus, meshes super snugly with the "action caper" pitch of the combat. "The Final Countdown" is basically a cinematic event from start to finish, along with being arguably the most iconic arena map ever and a preciously rare musical gimmick/pun map. 

 

I think it's telling that Valiant's "Rocket Zone 2" would have been highly recognizable as a remake of Lunatic's "Rocket Zone" even if it had a completely different theme and gave the architecture a substantial overhaul. the sense of identity transcends the things that most commonly produce identity. combine that with essentially the perfect musical fit -- the cheesy, synthy jams of '90s arcade games and of course...that other one -- and a great skybox and props.

 

Lunatic's combat is defined by its unification of "challenge" and "fun" (not the way I classify things, but I've seen it often and it works here, so I'm rolling with it). basically, the parts where you plow down lots of fodder with powerful weapons -- in a way that might read as comic relief -- are also arranged to be the most dangerous fights, instead of serving as pure low-stress interludes. that danger comes from a wider range of powerful attacks (no surprise that both new monsters are zombies with hard-hitting non-hitscan attacks) and from the constant worry of the weakling mobs infiltrating your space. the result is a sort of hedging against either part not translating to a given player: if a fight is too easy to be exciting purely based on its threat-resolution arc or if it's frustratingly hard (not that the latter is likely in Lunatic), it can still redeem itself with raw components that are inherently satisfying. 

 

skillsaw is also dogmatic about placing the needed parts of your progression goals in convenient sight -- a key might be hoisted on an unreachable platform, reached from somewhere else, with the matching key door adjoined in the same room. that both makes it hard to get lost and gives the action an undercurrent of psychological momentum. it is a pageturner in Doom format, in a way. having a clear picture of what's next encourages you to see it through, to tie the loose ends you've been handed. nothing's wrong with intentionally cryptic maps that refuse easy progress, but provided one wants super smooth flow, wads like Lunatic make a great study for avoiding the occasional hitches that often surface in maps that are 95% of the way there. 

 

9/10 or so. improved on (nominally) but still indispensable. 

 

/still not a reviewer. I don't do it often enough to count!

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Horus

  

A neat lunar-themed minisode from skillsaw, with a lot of nice space/rocketry visual touches. The soundtrack fits very well to the theme. 

 

Difficulty is fairly consistent throughout (save for the easier first level), enough going on to keep you satisfied but significantly easier than Valiant or Ancient Aliens. The mapset's custom monsters are introduced very well, even if they are quite simple to kill.

 

The final map was the highlight for me, a very fun slaughter-lite map. Overall, four stars, enjoyable stuff, though I do think skillsaw's meatier more recent works are an improvement over this.

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printz

  

Nicely challenging wad with a consistent Moon base and spaceflight theme. Gameplay is straightforward Plutonia combat, with a lot of dangerous ambushes requiring good reflexes and escape plans.

 

Stylistically, even though it made little difference while inside the techbases that you're on the Moon or anywhere else, the outside areas reminded you constantly where you are. The Earth may have been drawn too close in the sky, but the story explains why. The music however felt too arcade-like, and the Moon crater surface textures could have been better.

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Gaia74

  

a funny wad, some hard but recommended, the arquitechture is very good, the style good, and the music is nice

 

5/5

 

Gaia74

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StormCatcher.77

·

  

This project remembered to me by a simple and at the same time very impressive architecture, which hides a well-thought-out layout, giving excellent expirience from the gameplay. I was play most of the maps running through the locations from cover to cover, leaving behind the fighting monsters. New opponents here perfectly complement the classic and they are good to create problems. These maps give a very dynamic and at the same time free gameplay, which can be called exemplary. Even the last map, with a high count of enemies, is flown in the same breath. Thanks to the good tracks, which give a vigorous rhythm to the gameplay, this whole not-so-big project gives a bunch of positive impressions that you cannot collect in many “full-sized” megawads. 5/5 in my collection. I think in the near future I will dig deeper into other Skillsaw's works.

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seed

  

And thus Lunatic was finished, rather quickly too, played through GlBoom+ 2.5.1.5 on UV.

 

So this would basically be the predecessor to Valiant considering that the theme and gameplay style would end up in skillsaw's later work Valiant. It features only 5 levels taking place exclusively on the moon both inside and outside of various bases. The wad features a new background menu, music, new enemies, namely variations of the Shotgun Guy and Chaingunner who use Plasma rifles and Rocket Launchers respectively, new textures, but no new status bar, weapon/enemy sounds, or ENDOOM screen.

 

Compared to skillsaw's other 2 projects that I have played, namely Ancient Aliens and the previously mentioned Valiant, the biggest difference would probably be the difficulty. Lunatic is an easy-to-medium wad with low enemy counts, whereas the other 2 megawads are hard with high enemy counts that are targeted primarily at veterans or very skilled players, AA fitting especially well in this category. The maps are pretty short, compact, and straightforward with a few secrets that are generally easy to find, with the final level being a surprisingly short slaughter map with little over 300 enemies, which also features a MIDI rendition of Europe's "The Final Countdown" and is named after the track. Indeed, a very nice conclusion to the short expedition.

 

Considering that there's so few levels and there's nothing really making any of them stand out of the crowd (don't misunderstand, I don't think this is a problem in this case) with the possible exception of MAP05 which changes the style to slaughter, there's not much else to add, so in short, although skillsaw would later proceed to create 2 masterpieces, Lunatic lays the foundation on which Valiant will rise. It anticipates an epic journey while settings the standards high, delivering 5 action packed, beautiful, atmospheric, short and straight-to-the-point levels that are real fun to play. It only took me one hour to finish it so time really shouldn't be an issue. As it was the case of CS2 it was so fun I kinda wish it was longer, but this makes it perfect for those times when you just want to play some Doom but investing considerable amounts of time isn't exactly possible as it can easily be beaten in one sitting. Would highly recommend this to anyone, one hour of quality.

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Yugiboy85

  
Brilliant :) Map 03 and 04 have got to be my favorites of the set.

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Spectre01

  
Pretty good tbh but the Valiant moon episode was better in every way.

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AnonimVio

  
Absolutely fantastic, gorgeus, flawless.

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Guest

  
I love it and I didn't finish it yet !

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NuMetalManiak

  
a quick set with some good gameplay.

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Guest

  
Layout, texture use, decoration and ambiance: solid 4*. Gameplay @ UV starts promising, despite too many dull snipers. But hereafter it turns into an endlessly repeated slaughter of the simplemost kind: enter room - room is locked - huge monster spawns - create infighting - wait until almost all monsters are dead - kill the remainings - enter next scene. IOW: totally predictable and monotonous gameplay ruins the adventure completely. It's not difficult, just plain soulless and boring. Whát a pity...

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Budoka

  
This is often compared to Vanguard, but it doesn't play quite the same way, as the opposition here is both more lightweight and much more devious. Regardless, it's very satisfying. The fights are great, the custom enemies work perfectly and put on some interesting pressure on the player, and Skillsaw nailed the arcade space shooter feeling to a T. Of course,expect one of his typical easy-ish slaughtermaps. One big downside: compared to most of his other solo work, this one's over too quickly.

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Ezepov

  
super

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Guest

  
Skillsaw's mapping style is among the best of the modern DOOM mappers. His levels are just super-fun to play. Great architecture, great gameplay, and the last level with its very appropriate music took this wad to the next level and secured it as legendary. 5/5, an absolute blast!

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Unknown date

  
absolutely awesome.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
^You mean "Doom" wad, right? But yeah, this wad is badass! I give it 5 stars!

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Great leveldesign and setting, top-notch gameplay, cool new enemies. This mapset has only one flaw - it's too short! 5/5 - Demonologist

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Unknown date

  
more levels please! also 5*

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  • File Reviews

    • By Ofisil · Posted
      Very inconsistent everywhere you look, from the overall feel of the megawad, to each individual level. The balance is all over the place, leading to levels having uber-easy regions mixed with insanely challenging, trial-and-error ambushes. The exploration is very hit and miss, mostly leaning towards miss. A couple of interesting places, but the wad just isn't that fun, even for those who have a high tolerance for old wads like me.    
    • By Havoc Crow · Posted
      An example of how not to make a map. Lots of ugly rooms filled with same types of enemies. The blue key room in particular has about ten hell knights and barons trapped on pillars, and you have only a super shotgun to fight them; thankfully, what _would_ have been a mind-numbingly boring fight is skippable because the blue key is right there for you to take. Errors large and small abound, such as the pass-through metal bars or the clumsy approach to detailing and shading.
      New music, in the form of a bad-sounding midi which barely has any rhythm.
    • By Havoc Crow · Posted
      Finished within 4 minutes or so A 2016 re-release of a 1994 level. The text file warns: "Bad, really bad 1994 quality", and is right; there's nothing whatsoever interesting about this level -- you enter one flat room after another and shoot at haphazardly spread out monsters. There is an "invisible teleporter" gimmick which, however, I have barely noticed in my playthrough. The exit isn't even hidden or locked in any way, and can be easily stumbled into accidentally. There's nothing to say.
    • By Havoc Crow · Posted
      The map feels very linear throughout, with you basically doing one thing in each room and moving on to the next. The rooms are very varied though, and there is actually something pleasant to uncovering the successive areas. There are some puzzles, one of which involves illusionary walls, with a zombie shooting at you from "nowhere" being the only hint; this is a clever puzzle but it could ruin the map if the player accidentally kills the zombie early and gets stuck. The spiderdemon hall near the end contains what is either a glitch or a really annoying "trick": columns that seem safe at first, but actually don't shield you from the spider's gunfire at all.   Almost finished, ~20 minutes; died to the spiderdemon.
    • By Havoc Crow · Posted
      (MAP03 review only)   Finished, ~20 minutes Yet another map which drops the ball in terms of difficulty. Health is provided in extreme abundance, and even when heftier enemies show up, their attacks are easy to dodge in the huge arenas (even the cyberdemon/spiderdemon fight at the end provides such ample cover that you need almost to be _trying_ to die -- as, uh, has happened to me). I've once read that, with the advent of modern source ports which streamlined mouse aiming, older Doom levels suddenly became very easy; this would explain why so many of these mid-90's maps feel so strangely unchallenging...
      The area beyond the yellow key door offers a more interesting fight, what with the corridor filled with lost souls. However, the map quickly loses momentum after that, wasting the player's time with the pointless room of six teleporters, which all turn out to lead to identical closets with medikits. Turns out, that room is just a red herring; the real way to progress is to open a door indistinguishable from a wall. Annoyingly, having to hump the walls to find the hidden door happens several times throughout the map.
      Powerups are scattered haphazardly, including a pointless invulnerability sphere, numerous invisibility spheres despite the total lack of hitscanner enemies (this is another 90's thing, it seems; did the people back then _really_ think invisibility spheres helped against projectile-throwing demons?), and a light-amplification visor despite a lack of dark areas where it'd be useful.
      The map topology is as basic as it gets: a small starting room with four doors, one initially open and three locked with keys, each door leading to a totally separate area housing the key to the next door over. Each area is distinct visually, although there's a lot of simplistic-looking, overly large rooms. There's fairly little interconnection between individual rooms within each area; mostly you just progress from room to room, and things like windows are rare. The map suffers from "symmetry syndrome", where the mapper goes out of his way to make every room symmetrical, without thinking if it improves the room or not (example: in the red door area, there's a side room housing an irritating slow-moving lift, not worth visiting except to get 100% kills... and this side room of course gets dutifully duplicated on the other side of the area).
      There is custom music in the form of a rock midi, not particularly well-made, but not overly grating either.
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