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ECHELON

   (55 reviews)
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A megawad full of small & fast levels. A reimagining of the Doom II storyline.


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Michael Jensen

  

In 1998, Sverre Kvernmo was named as one of the best doom mappers. In 2016 he released a megawad which proved he's still one of the best. Echelon is creative, unique and has great architecture and beautiful levels. The atmosphere is unlike anything I've seen before in a Doom wad. The first levels took me off guard because of how short they were, however, Echelon is more about the continuous experience than individual levels (although there are many levels which are great on their own). I've never completed a megawad in one sitting before, but I just could not stop playing. Echelon goes right into my top 5. I wish Sverre Kvernmo would return again to make some more maps.  

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Philnemba

  

Single handily created from the mind of legendary 90s mapper Cranium, Echelon is a megawad that is essentially a retelling of Doom 2 from small tech base/moon maps to small/medium size city maps to neat medium size hellish landscapes. While there are a few dull maps early in the megawad along with a disappointing map 30, I would honestly say most of these maps are fun & worth playing through...especially map 29 which is my favorite :)

 

-Philnemba 4/5  

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trrobin

  

A bit of a mixed bag initially however the second half is definitely more engaging with more action, especially the last 10 or so levels. Even so it is still fairly sparse action-wise.

Design and atmosphere are above average especially towards the end but nothing that special.

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Demtor

  

Creative stuff with lots of missed opportunities unfortunately. The maps will go by so quickly though it's worth checking out for the crazy music and the fun new enemies and textures.

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JudgeDeadd

  
Kind of overrated. While some maps are pretty memorable, fun and adequately challenging, such as "Inner Palace", a lot of them feel like dull filler.

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Spectre01

  
Neat visuals and music here and there but the maps fly by quickly and gameplay leaves much to be desired. Alright for a quick playthrough but without the charm of something like Scythe. 2/5

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Katamori

  
A flawless example of how to convey a message through level design, while still keeping original ideas. Perfectly mixes deeper meaning and fitting aesthetics with simplicity, flow and unique architecture. I would make it mandatory for everyone who'd ever try making maps for Doom. Absolutely doubtless 5*, legendary in every aspect.

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Xaser

  
Wonderfully original. 'Nuff said.

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NightFright

  
Most of these maps can be completed in 3-10 minutes, but it doesn't mean this is not worth your time. I found the fast progress refreshing actually. It's something different and you need to be willing to play past the first ten maps which may be finished much faster than you would expect. Stick to it and be rewarded with a continuous storyline that smoothly blends in with the standard Doom II cluster texts. Kudos to Cranium for creating this little gem!

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Voros

  
Amazing. The maps are small. There is a lot of immersion with the story (but not too much). Detailing was good. Must try if you feel like going for something small and yet big.

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mouldy

  
Really nice megawad this. The maps are short and sweet, not too difficult and with a degree of continuity that keeps you hooked. Really like the new textures and monsters too. Perfect for a few hours of casual dooming.

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AnonimVio

  
Ugly, boring, repetitive.

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Fonze

  
Very well done, minimally designed levels with the perfect emphasis on color that as a whole produce a great, story-driven experience.

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kmxexii

  
Sverre makes a megaWAD of mostly small levels, in stark contrast to his Eternal Doom / Plasmaplant stuff. It'll go even faster with carryovers. It's a retelling of Doom II with some liberties taken. His city theme, the more intimate areas having a sort of space-age modularity about them, are my favorite. The balance of some of the later levels - namely MAP24-26 - is pretty tight on UV. Plus, you get to save a dog from a burning building! I dig the Ribbiks / Jimmy soundtrack.

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NuMetalManiak

  
this is crazy. the first few maps show that there might not be a whole lot of good in it. in fact, quite a few of the maps are definitely horrible, the mash of colors and odd thing placement add to that. the last few levels may actually be worth playing though.

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Zalewa

  
A crystal meth crack hallucinogenic mushrooms spawn of 30 mind exploding maps that simply do not compute. I feel mentally ill after noclipping through all of them. Playability - zero. Architecture - what the fuck. Music - I'd rather listen to a person with diarrhea relieving themselves. This WAD deserves no points and may the gods have mercy on its soul.

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  • File Reviews

    • By Ordon · Posted
      well, the concept is good  BUT...   WHAT THE FUCK EVEN IS THIS??
    • By Cinnamon · Posted
      Definitely shows its age. It was a real grind to play through, mostly due to the levels being boring, but also from a remarkable over-reliance on hitscan, especially shotgunners. For some reason. The third episode does indeed pick up much of the slack, but with the really fun levels being shining exceptions rather than rule for two thirds of the WAD it still left me annoyed and exasperated in the end. The maps look fine most of the time and the music is good to really good, which is something to hold on to. I would still advice my past self to skip most of this one.    
    • By Cinnamon · Posted
      There's not too much for me to say about this one. While it isn't exactly my jam 100% of the time, I'm struggling to see how any creative endeavor could entertain me so thoroughly, throughout all the 32 parts of it. Ancient Aliens is charming, somewhat challenging, mysterious, well-paced... I could iterate over plenty of different variations of lavish praise, but I guess that in and of itself describes my feelings: AA is remarkably well-rounded. A DOOM blockbuster - and I use that description as an honest compliment rather than the pejorative it's sometimes thought of. One for the ages, and it'll be one of the WADs to which many of my future experience will be compared.    
    • By VoanHead · Posted
      On second thought, this wad is kinda mid if you ask me. After playing through all of it on pistol-start I wasn't really blown away by it. The midi pack that was made for this in 2020 was very nice if you ask me, but why this wad ever deserves a midi pack when it's so bland is what makes me scratch my head. Idk man, I didn't like this one as much as others do :/.
    • By baja blast rd. · Posted
      This reads as an early example of arcade-style mapping.   Areas are defined largely by color combinations, with no real overarching theme to the map: there are silver techbase rooms, brick-like Earth rooms, red hellish rooms, without much in the way of detailing or setting-building -- all centralized around a square hub room with key doors, which repopulates with monsters each time you find a key. It's on the simpler side visually, but still a very clear step above "monotextured square rooms"-type design, with some solid architecture, shapes, and texture combos here and there, and even a clever crushing UFO-like "ring" at one point.    The gameplay concepts are very straightforward, with one exception being a room that has you platforming over damaging floor while closets of lost souls and cacodemons open up. Instead, the bulk of the fighting is more often dished out as blocks of monsters often revealed in closets -- blocks at a density far below what you'd consider slaughter. Some of the potential fun involves herding monsters towards barrels; once I waited several seconds for chaingunners to walk halfway across the room, right next to a clump of barrels I could blow them all up with. The ending fight is designed for you to pour rockets into two static cybs while circling, and I skipped that one.    Completed in a bit under 10 minutes. 
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