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No End in Sight

   (41 reviews)

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Oldschool 4-episode adventure for The Ultimate Doom, featuring some of the most devilish map design this side of 1994. 'Nuff said... ish.

Similar to DTWID, the spirit of id is ever-present, albeit cranked up to 11 with a devious new spin on the classic episodes' themes. Along the way, you'll enter parallel worlds, explore derelict spaceships still floating in the sky, and return to some eerily familiar locales on the far side of Phobos and beyond.


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bLOCKbOYgAMES

  

For me, the finest Doom1 classic megawad I have played. DTWiD was awesome, but sometimes felt like 'design by committee.' This wad captures the spirit and essence of classic Dooming. Everything that made the original Doom1 great, but bigger, meaner, tougher, more artistic. Superb.

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seed

· Edited by seed

  

"One eternity later..."

 

And thus, No End in Sight has endeth, played through Eternity 4.01.00 on UV difficulty. What a seemingly endless journey, but was it for the better or worse? Well, let's find out.

 

No End in Sight is a 4-episode long megawad for Ultimate Doom with a design philosophy similar to DTWID, sticking close to it and the original Doom, but adds its own spin to the formula. It comes with a new menu background, intermission screens, status bar, and textures. The action takes place on techbases and in Hell, both incorporating open sections in various places.

 

The difficulty curve is mostly the traditional kind, starting easier and getting more difficult as the player advances in the episodes, but shows an occasional spike on the more combat focused levels. The levels themselves are very faithful to the original game but are much more complex and look a bit more modern. The first point is probably where the biggest flaw of NEIS lies. It places its main focus on exploration and puzzles, which can easily lead to a tedious or tiresome experience depending on the execution. The latter can get quite obtuse and it's difficult to find what has actually changed in the levels as the automap doesn't help too much either. Pressing a switch does not usually do something more obvious as the are no visual or auditory clues, requiring the player to roam around the map in search for what has now changed. Additionally, there are other design choices that appear to serve to confuse the player even more. For instance, there are maps with multiple doors of the same color (up to 3, and potentially even more), some of which also featuring fake exits, only serving as more frustration and general confusion. This is primarily noticed from Episode 3 onward which starts with a pure puzzle level.

 

The first 2 episodes have decent flow and are more straightforward, as a result it is easier to find your way through and enjoy them, but navigation simply turns into a nightmare from Episode 3 onward. Other problems include the fact that it is difficult to see everything in the levels on a first run as they appear to have many hidden or secret areas, yours truly finding himself finishing maps with as low as 40% kills, barely any items, and no secrets. Yet another design issue is related to damaging sectors. Every liquid sector in NEIS seems to be damaging on a lot of occasions, be it blue water, toxic slime, or blood. Some retexture choices are also strange, those being primarily related to the skies. Episode 1 and 3 present great takes on the originals, the first indicating that the action now takes place during the night, which works wonderfully for the atmosphere, however the sky used in Episode 2 is bizarre as the mountains are now in an almost glowing yellow color. This makes them stand out in the environments, notably in the darker sections, but not exactly for the right reasons. After all is said and done, the episodes usually end with fights that present fresh takes on the iconic originals, such as the Mastermind on E3M8 and the 2 Baron brothers on E1M8, with greatly altered environments and new tricks up their sleeves.

 

The combat is generally satisfying, fast, and fun, but at the same time it reveals that it was not the main focus of the wad, despite the presence of various environmental traps and tricks. The puzzles are the main focus here. Some enemies are also overused, namely the Specters and hitscanners. While Barons are used sparingly, they sometimes block the path on small corridors and stairs, thus leading to awkward situations where executing them is not fun or engaging at all. Resource management also plays a crucial role in NEIS as some of the maps are punishing, where mistakes are costly, but at the same time, they are not cruel or unfair. The balancing is fairly good overall, especially if the player is paying attention to the game.

 

To sum up, NEIS manages to capture the essence of the '90s but does not deliver its fullest. It ends up being more frustrating and tedious than fun. It does not mean that it is all bad despite some objective flaws in its design, but it is indeed divisive. If you enjoy puzzle oriented wads with exploration cranked to 11, this is going to be a perfect pick and you're going to have a blast with NEIS. If you prefer more straightforward, combat-focused wads, it will likely prove to be a struggle to beat and unenjoyable most of the time. In that case, I would recommend Lunar Catastrophe, Doom the Way id Did, Moonblood, Exomoon, and Adonis: Escape from Urania instead, the last 3 having plenty of puzzles and nonlinear progression in addition to good, fast paced combat that doesn't fall behind. Personally, I've managed to enjoy only the first episode and parts of the second, it went south after the third for me.

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The_SloVinator

  

It was alright.

 

Some maps contained too many enemies & as a result, became a chore to fight them. Some gimmicks were interesting, especially E3M1.

Didn't finish E4 for the reason I mentioned above.

 

Not worth your time all that much.

 

 

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chowbar

  

Possibly my favorite Ultimate Doom megawad. Although its first half feels like DTWID, it quickly becomes a much more twisted and demented take on the familiar techbase/hell aesthetic. Expect well hidden secrets, tight corridors, and some tough encounters in large, complex levels. In keeping with Ult Doom's tone, NaturalTvventy layers the atomphere on thick to create levels that feel genuinely hostile and evil, even more so than in the original. 

 

If you have a soft spot in your heart for the original Ultimate Doom, this megawad is a must play. NEIS makes you realize how rock solid the original Doom formula is, even without the SSG and revenants. 

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trrobin

  

Absolutely amazing 4-episode wad. Excellent gameplay mechanics balanced with old school and newer (at times) designed areas. Secrets are difficult to find and some maps are quite vast so there is a lot of replay value here.

Very challenging difficulty towards the end too so be alert!

All in all, I loved this.

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Count651

  

This wad was quite a love/hate relationship for me. Episode 1 and 2 were fantastic. They flowed so well and were challenging without being stupid. Sadly once I got to episode 3 the wad took a turn for the worst. Most of episode 3 is too dark, too big, too confusing, and too full of mandatory damaging sectors without a radsuit. Episodes 1 and 2 were a blast but 3 and 4 just felt like a lot of work. I had to use the console to give myself radsuits and light amp goggles many times. Its no fun to find a secret soul sphere if you're just gonna burn it all away crossing lava without a radsuit. In the end I'd highly recommend the first 2 episodes. They're what Doom is all about; fast fun simple maps. The later half was quite the opposite.

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galileo31dos01

· Edited by galileo31dos01

  

Done on HMP/continuous/saves

 

This was so fun and challenging! Certainly a very well done megawad to feel nostalgic with its pace, the midis, the feeling of playing something made by the original authors of Doom. Very tough maps, since I played continuous, there was almost never a problem with ammo, but I still saw that for pistol starters the thing would be totally different. For the most part, great. 

 

What I found a little (too much) overused was many mandatory type 16 damaging floors (except the ones to get to secret exits) in some E3 maps, at least they were the minority. Some maps can be veeeery mazy, which is cool, for those maps I spent over 1 hour or 2. There is a bug in E4M7 with a pool of spectres that doesn't raise. Didn't play E1M0 and E4M0 as they are not supported by the ports I use, I'll try them someday...

 

In general, monster placement was fine for me. A couple of annoying moments, with lost souls, everywhere... E4M6 was incredibly long to maximize or complete, whatever the word is. I think I died a whole load of times there, every single monster from the tiniest to the biggest became a singular problem. Regardless, liked the map. Lovely ending in E4M8 to simulate hell's fall.

 

Secrets were very UD-ish, and a few very clever ones. Liked the secret hunt in E4M6, it's practically the most memorable episode for me lol.

 

So yeah, recommendable, my overall rate would be 8/10. 

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tourniquet

  

Bloody amazing!

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Spectre01

  

Nice Doom 1 megawad with a good difficulty curve across the 4 episodes. Starts similar to DTWID but eventually finds its own niche with a higher degree of challenge and some rather complex secrets. 4/5

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Manbou

  
This wad reminds me of the good old DOOM. The tricks in this wad are really interesting and the secrets are really elaborate. My favorite map is E3M7. This is amazingly awesome. Great job.

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Mechadon

  
Loved every second of this! Amazing job guys :D

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Dr. Crowley

  
Episode One feels boring... until E1M6, where enviroment starts to feel like Romero's Tech Gone Bad. Episode Four claims to take a place on Earth but overall maps are looking more like Doom 2 Hell. However, this is pretty good mapset.

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NuMetalManiak

· Edited by NuMetalManiak

  

now this is a treat, lots of cool concepts in these maps, makes it all seem fresh, and many maps are quite fun too. some of the really long maps do get weary after a while though. but even then, where else can you find an Ultimate Doom mapset quite like this? this is probably the single most unique one to date, and even upon replaying it, you still find yourself enjoying the maps a lot. making things cooler is how well the mappers like to hide their secrets or give you wonky progression to work around. highlighted some spoilers below

 

Spoiler

E1M3: make sure to keep the imps on the right side of the map alive, otherwise you'll never reach the secret exit

E1M9: five-minute door is used

E3M1: see the wiki page for this map, I did all of these secrets

E3M4: don't be fooled with the exits here, the secret exit is technically the normal exit, same with E3M5

E3M7: entering the middle chamber via the corners will lock you out of a lot of useful stuff

E4M2: do NOT shoot that barrel in the red door if you want to get the secret exit

many other maps besides the ones mentioned above are very memorable and pretty tough too, loads of small enemies to push through plus the bigwigs every now and then. be prepared for a long haul with this one.

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Doomkid

  
Good stuff right here

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Zalewa

  
"Similar to DTWID" on steroids! This WAD is all that Ultimate Doom IWAD is but bigger in all aspects. The levels are large and very non-linear, the action is unrelenting, non-tedious and keeps you alert. The looks are excellent. E4 is a bit over the top, though. Don't approach it on UV without SSG and double ammo.

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  • File Reviews

    • By VanillaExtract · Posted
      Pretty solid for a bite-sized claustrophobic level. Even on UV it doesn't get frustrating, though you will die a few times. On top of that, the level is pretty short overall, taking less than 10 minutes. The level is pretty linear in terms of unravelling, but there was at least one encounter that could have gone quite differently if I hadn't taken care of an enemy earlier, so there's a little bit of strategy. The combination of Wolf3d and Doom textures make for a colorful and macabre combination, having bright, cartoony blue walls interspersed with rooms of meat. Good stuff!
    • By Roofi · Posted
      One of the best wads of the 1990s I've ever played. The main weakness is surely its very outdated aestheticism with a very strange use of textures.   On the other hand, the wad must be retained for its ingenious traps and creative layouts. The wad is not easy. I have died several times in some levels. Rocketmen are particularly dangerous but at the same time very useful in killing their teammates.   My level is probably level 5 "The Hidden Below". I loved the height variations and the ways of climbing and descending. Moreover in each level, there are nice textures like barriers, middle-textures arches....   For me this wad is an example of true level design and inventiveness.   I rate it only 4.5/5 because of the absence of new music and the rather rudimentary aestheticism even for its time.  
    • By Walter confetti · Posted
      Big, fun exploration map with a really good theme... Visplanes crash on vanilla DOOM2.exe, works without any problem with doom2+
    • By P41R47 · Posted
      I really liked the free alternative to TNT: Evilution.
      Icarus: Alien Vanguard is a totally different monster but somehow similar, made by the same monster team.
      This lacked a proper dehacked patch with custom text, but @NightFright made a neat fix for that, telling a compelling story that is really entertaining to play.
      The maps are amazing. The best maps here are far better than Evilution's best maps. The bad ones here, are just bad Doom 2 level maps, so there is little to be really bad all in all.
      But, Icarus had the same little ill as Evilution had, last ten maps completely drags the experience. At least, this maps are better than the ten last from Evilution.

      Team TNT has shown that not only are good mappers, they also are good storytellers and that, in a game like Doom, is something to be proud of. And they achive this even working non stop to release this before Evilution hit the streets, so, even if some maps feel a little rushed, they are great!
      The soundtrack is a key element here. Bringing an awesome personallity to this outstanding mapset full of neat ideas.

      Thanks team TNT for this amazing megawad.    
    • By P41R47 · Posted
      ETERNAL DooM is not a megawad, its an experience that had to be lived to be fully undertanded.
      This is the megawad of the 90's for me in terms of exploration and atonishing sightseeing og the marvelous structures around.
      This megawad its one of the few that awakes in me a sense of wonder like no other.
      And to make things better, i played the incredible dehacked patch that @NightFright made, that adds maps names and new text screens with a custom story. This is the ultimate way to play this outstanding work.

      Now to the flaws: the first two levels are what really define if you would play this megawad or not. The first maps is corridor after corridor, with a little puzzle for the keys to enable the exit, after that, the second map is something completely different, with a very big puzzle map that will catch everybody unprepared. If you can reach map three, your surely are at it now, and after that, is a big alley up, a pretty big mountain ahead full of wonders.

      Thanks team Eternal and TNT for this amazing work of art. This possibly is the best megawad i played soo far and the one that i most liked. It has almost everything, new textures and graphics, new way of thinking maps, extremelly clever puzzles, a lot of exploration and a full experience.

      What it lacks? Maybe a proper graphic for the end boss, a proper BOSSBACK also, and some new monsters would be cool, but for a megawad from 1997, this is almost perfect.
      And the soundtrack!
      God, thats a marvelous soundtrack!
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