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Knee-Deep in ZDoom

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About This File

The experience of playing through Knee-Deep in the Dead is one that many gamers will never forget, but through the years the episode has become too easy for many to play through and enjoy the way they did the first time.

Knee-Deep in ZDoom is an interpretation of Id Software's original groundbreaking production, Knee-Deep in the Dead. The team has focused on expanding the original episode by utilizing the power of Randy Heit's ZDoom port; adding new areas, features, and gameplay devices not possible under the original Doom engine. Knee-Deep in ZDoom is a new experience, but holds strong to the atmosphere of the original. Relive the fear. Relive the nightmare. Relive Phobos.


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Fairen

  

While it has its flaws, some rooted in its concept, Knee-Deep in ZDoom is an interesting reimagining of the first episode of Doom. As you progress through the levels, you'll see familiar layouts, but there's new areas added and twists to those classic rooms so that the experience does remain fresh—the familiarity will of course help to find secrets and the like, though not every secret has been recreated.

 

The expansion of the levels is arguably KDiZD's greatest strength and weakness, as while these highly-detailed environments are interesting, they can also become extremely labyrinthine and confusing to explore. The third level is the best example of this, adding on an entirely-original mines area which itself requires finding keys and switches to progress through this segment. I ended up getting lost and missing a switch, figuring the needed key was in the "original" areas of the map, only to proceed through the level and get blocked by the final door because I hadn't reactivated the generator. The game does give the occasional message prompt, but some parts could have benefitted from giving more direction from the outset.

 

There's some new monsters. Some don't quite feel Doom-y, like the satyrs (basically melee-only barons) and there's a few too many imp variants, but they do give some more variety to monster encounters. The WAD also adds the super shotgun, as well as two original new weapons to replace the plasma gun and BFG 9000 (amusingly, the game still displayed cell count—GZDoom glitch, maybe?). The grenade launcher serves as a bouncy rocket launcher, doing more damage while being trickier to use, though its greatest trick is its tendency for the grenade to bounce off of tiny details on the floor and blow you to kingdom come instead. The other new weapon is...A Rifle. Just...A Rifle. It fires quite rapidly, is perfectly accurate, and you get a decent amount of ammo for it. And each shot does as much damage as a super-shotgun blast. It is ludicrously overpowered—it can take out tough enemies in just a handful of shots from a long distance, in mere seconds. Even the final bosses, a pair of "bruiser" demons and a giant demon in a pit of lava, go down like chumps provided that you come into these fights with a good amount of ammo for A Rifle.

 

One thing that does deserve special mention for frustration, though. The game provides an "action indicator" option, to show things in the environment you can use that aren't obvious switches, stuff like consoles and the like. But Z1M3 has a particularly frustrating instance of this, where in order to reach a secret area, you have to interact with a small box sitting on a ledge, which causes the Doomguy to pick up this box so you can then place it on another ledge to jump up into the hatch. Nothing gives any indication that the box in question can be interacted with, and to make it even worse, this secret area is required in order to access the secret level (which is all-important because it gets you A Rifle that much earlier!).

 

In the end, Knee-Deep in ZDoom has its tedious and frustrating moments, but ultimately it was a fun experience that played to and upon the classic and iconic designs of Knee-Deep in the Dead. And it has made me want a mod that replaces the BFG 9000 with A Rifle for any other WAD, because who needs a big fleeping gun when you can eviscerate the hordes of hell with your almighty A Rifle?

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dei_eldren

· Edited by dei_eldren

  

Having been recommended to me earlier, a while back i gave this WAD a serious try, whilst by now being quite sure it's not on paper something i'd be likely to enjoy.  And so it wasn't, i simply quit in E1M4, but could've just as easily done so already on M1, as my impression didn't change at all as the game went on.

 

For me, the layouts are far too protracted and downright boring as a result, and the detailing is heavy-handedly generous, and i would even say, not pleasing to my eye.  Long levels often are not a problem when the layout is well-designed, and when one by the end of it has gotten a good grasp of it, but here i never got that feeling, so for me the layout designs are a problem.  No doubt this is partly due to them being expansions of the original maps, but it shows their efficacy and genius - and it shows that the whole idea of expanding such maps may be ill-adviced unless one can truly match that genius, and here that has not been the case.

i also did not enjoy the alteration of the original areas to 'modernized' or 'improved' versions.  One main feature of this WAD are the gameplay additions, such as mines, forcefields, radiation areas, new monsters and numerous others, and these i saw as nothing more than gimmicks that didn't add any substance, simply detracting from the elegant simplicity of the game.  

As far as gameplay itself goes, on first level there was a severe shortage of health considering the amount of hitscanners, and also some worry about having enough ammo.  On further levels they weren't frivolously given either but that's to be expected (quite a bit of bullet-spongy beasts are present, so it's important to manage it all correctly).  The new monsters didn't add anything to my liking, but i do see what was attempted with them - still, for me they are just a novelty (i sort of like the black crouching figure shooting fireballs, maybe it could be used somewhere and i'd like it...)  Doom is an extremely balanced game, and it's not easy to add to its bestiary without tipping the scales, i'm aware of only a handful of times that it's been successful to my taste.

 

One interesting thing was the detailed intermission-stats, that even showed as graphs the player's success in past levels and collected/used ammo, health, etc. 

 

i have in the past used the term gimmick-WAD and this is a good example of exactly what i mean with it.  So for me, this had nothing to do with Doom, but i give two stars regardless, mainly for effort and trying something different.  Even so, this is just my personal experience and preference, and i'm glad a lot of people are of a different opinion.  (Played on LZDoom, HMP and continuous.)

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MLGari

  

Amazing 10/10 go play it NOW

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game

  

Much atmosphere and scarcity of ammo make it a survival horror gem in my book. Fantastic detail to be found in the reimagining of the classic locations.

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Spectre01

  
Highly ambitious E1 remake with a very high level of detail and plenty of original content. The maps are massive and really test your navigational skills. 4/5

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BoJustBo

  
A monumentally impressive mod on both a technical level aswell as a map design level. Beautiful if a bit too dark at times giving it a real horror mood. The grenade launcher is a terrible gun though, I must say, it hits you more than it hits enemies, and it does double the damage of a rocket both ways.

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Guest

  
this is one of the most BadA$$ remakes of Knee Deep In the Dead that i have ever played! i am proud to make room on my hard drive for this legendary mod. -Dragon Mech

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The Doommer

  
23 MB ? Looks good , downloading...

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Guest

  
Combat that John Romero could NEVER have imagined! Experience Lion-O blocking your attacks with a trash can lid, the Dover Demon firing lasers and shitting on the ground at the same time, satyrs doing more damage lightly pawing at you than specters do taking giant bites, and killing yourself with rubber grenades over and over! TWICE as many keys as before! FOUR times the stat screens! Can you handle this much X-TREEM? (The levels are truly impressive expansions of the originals, however).

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Guest

  
Switchhunt City. Convoluted bullshit where you run around the map for half an hour checking everything once more, trying to figure out what the fuck you're supposed to do. If that sounds good to you though and your only problem with the original Doom was that progress was too obvious even in the later levels, then this is the mod for you. The new weapons and monsters are so interesting, too. There's clearly been a lot of effort put into it, it's just a shame that the pacing has been murdered and immolated.

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Guest

  
quality over quantity

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Guest

  
it's just a new DOOM! New gameplay, ennemies and such more badass shotguns!!!!!!!!

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scifista42

  
I liked KDIZD a lot, with the exception of Z1M8, which annoyed me in quite a few ways. But still, it's a great wad.

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Guest

  
Giving this a passing 3, 'cause effort. I didn't enjoy it personally, but I can see the love that was put into this mapset. It's a shame it wasn't better.

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Guest

  
Kinda good but kinda not. Too many weapons. Does Doom really need an SSG or a grenade launcher for that matter? Giving this a final mark has stumped me because there's a lot of good in here and there are plenty of fun bits but there's other bits that make those less enjoyable. So I can't be totally positive. I think the length might have something to do with it.

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Unknown date

  
Excellent work! Graphics, details, layouts, and such are very good. I can tell, that their was alot of hard work has been placed on this whole file, however; hard work pays off! 5 Stars -Nicholas G.

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Unknown date

  
Five stars, excelent wad. -Vegeta

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Unknown date

  
Despite being frustrating at times, as people have said, it wasn't so much confusion (with the exception of Z1M3) as it was difficulty. Overall challenging and addicting. I kept quitting when I would die, but coming back ten minutes later to play again. The ending was glorious. 5/5

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Unknown date

  
I think they did a superb job I love the new weapons and monsters I love the new sound effects and the maps while haveing new places to explore have some familarality to the original Kneed Deep in The Dead. The detail is Legendary I haven't seen this level of detail in any wad. All these factors make up a very very good wad. 5/5

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Unknown date

  
Easily one of the most interesting projects ever made, it shared a nice balance of old and new concepts that put life (back) into E1's original theme. Further, it actually felt like a complete experience from start to finish - nothing seemed slapped together, from level structure to the new monsters to item placement that forces you to think as you fight. Very rare for a levelset to actually draw you in like this one did so easily. Thanks for releasing a project with character and a pulse!

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Unknown date

  
Excellent. The tie in to the original levels is well done. Over-all amazing.

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Unknown date

  
Hated it the first time I played it, hated it again. I lost interest at Z1M4, and just cheated through the rest. The maps are too big for their own good, and the gameplay gets boring as a result. The detailing is just plain ugly, and overdone, like the designers didn't want to leave a single bare wall. I probably would've passed on this regardless, but I think tying it to the original E1 maps was a bad idea.

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Unknown date

  
Fantastic! An incredible modern interpretation of the original Romero DOOM episode! 5/5.

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Unknown date

  
While the detail somewhat slaughtered this, it is playable by every means. The 'three new' weapons arn't needed, the plasma rifle and BFG would of go well, but whatever.. 4/5 for effort and long time to make.

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Unknown date

  
I like this wad for the same reasons than people who dislike it : huge levels, puzzles, new monsters and weapons, hellish secrets... The same facts that makes me love Daedalus, Eternal Doom or even NeoDoom. Obviously a 5/5 from me. ~Naan

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