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Umbra of Fate

   (6 reviews)

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About This File

A man is on vacation and is out enjoying a day of hunting while his wife and infant son are at home. After a long and boring day, he starts walking back to his car, only to discover a ravine that wasn't there before. Feeling an unusually strong urge to find out what lurks beyond the ravine, he jumps down into it and heads out into the dark, foggy forest night.

Umbra of Fate is something of a personal experiment where I try to push the type of gameplay I enjoy to the limit.


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Zalewa

  

Even though I agree with other reviewers that this map is not flawless, it still gets plenty of stuff exactly right. The truly dark and gloomy atmosphere (instead of Doom64 crap), the architecture, the dynamic lighting, the journey, the story bits, the action packed gameplay that still does fit the theme of the level and the great soundtrack.

 

I've went through the map on normal difficulty and I think that it's fair. It's not exactly easy, but except for the second cyberdemon fight (in the moving lava room) I rarely had problems. I can agree with other reviewers that the map could offer a bit more rocket ammunition, but I exploited the respawning ammo during the fight with the first cyberdemon to stockpile.

 

Anyway, this now becomes one of my most favourite WADs. I would use it to show a non-doomer what the GZDoom engine and the mappers are capable of.

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NuMetalManiak

  

Umbra of Fate is an example of a story-driven single map. it's very interesting to see the story unfold in media res as you go through, although some are probably gonna be inclined to skip the story scenes for the gameplay. well, the gameplay is good enough, enemies spawn in ZDoom style and are generally challenging in most cases, look out for the pyro-succubus enemies as well as several more ambushes around. the secrets are something else, got 12/16 so far but I'm not able to document all of the non-sector ones. the boss fights, like the two cyberdemon ones, are pretty good. and the final fight with the Avatar is certainly challenging, but in a way not unlike fighting Hexen's Heresiarch (he even has an invulnerability move, souped up to just summon four bruiser demons into the map making life really hard). the boss honestly is the biggest highlight of the whole map, and is one of the harder boss fights I've seen in a ZDoom map. add to it the brooding atmosphere and detail, the linear but still workable combat, and you got yourself something well done.

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faad3e

· Edited by faad3e

  

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Denim Destroyer

  

Absolutely amazing looking level that manages fuses Quake and Doom aesthetic into one colorful yet gloomy nightmare. The music and detailing is outstanding however, like other people, I managed to get stuck on a piece of trim or oddly placed pillar that almost ended in my death.

Gameplay wise this level can be rather challenging in a few spots. Few of the custom enemies present can drain massive amounts of your health in one or two shots which would not be an issue if those particular monsters were placed with less monsters around them. For instance the Pyrosuccubus can drain massive amounts of your health in one shot and they are never by themselves. On the topic of monsters, the Hell Knight and Barons have faster moving projectiles which is an unexpected change that proves to be annoying in a few instances. The last topic I want to touch upon is the final boss. Without spoilers I will mention that I had to enable cheats in order to kill a supporting enemy allowing me to defeat the boss. The reason for this usage of cheats is that the supporting enemy was stuck inside a pillar causing it to not take damage.

Overall I give this four out of five stars due to the graphics, music, and the level being a decent challenge. The reason it isn't a five is the couple instances of annoying monster encounters and the issue with the boss, I do concede that last part isn't necessarily the mappers fault but is something I found annoying. In spite of the few issues present I still highly recommend Umbra of Fate to any person looking to see what GZDoom could do.

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Nine Inch Heels

  

Four stars (Read: 7/10) and here's why:

Aesthetically, this is as good as you would expect after Shadows of the Nightmare Realm: Dense atmosphere, fitting soundtrack, detailed environments and striking use of colours create a place that is both believeable yet surreal. There really isn't anything else to say other than it looks spectacular.

 

Unfortunately some of these details come with a cost of their own: There are several occasions in which details or placed objects are either mildly annoying or even dangerously intrusive at the worst possible time. I think that some "smoothening" here and there would have helped.

 

The gameplay marches to the beat of its own drum, whether for better or for worse is definitely subject to the eye of the beholder. There are some things that just don't work with my "palate", because quite frankly some encounters overstayed their welcome a good deal. So much for the TL;DR, here's some things that sprung at me:

The lack of higher grade ammunition over certain stretches in this map, especially on the higher difficulties, is something I find hard to digest. Whenever you get your hands on some rockets or cells, think twice about using them right away. The "player output" to monster health ratio leans a lot towards meaty and (borderline) grindy situations in spite of the relatively low monster count. SSG fights against (slightly buffed) Barons of Hell at varying distances, chaingun-tap-sniping at distant enemies, and the occasional cornercamp are something you're gonna have to deal with. For the purpose of seeing all the content in a timely fashion, I ended up trying to skip basically everything that wasn't a hitscanner, and also most other things that aren't tied to a "kill trigger" whenever I could. It saved me some higher grade ammo for when I actually could make good use of it. If you're a die-hard completionist, you will need to love the SSG even more than a decadent breakfast in bed. Personally I think the higher difficulties here are asking for some more rockets in order to make shorter work of the trivial albeit meaty fights.

 

There are some conceptually interesting fights in this map, in particular the first Cyberdemon and the actual boss come to mind, and there are some setpiece-based fights which have a nuance of their own.

 

As for the first Cyberdemon: That one I have really mixed feelings about. It's sort of like a "miniboss" fight that has two phases to it which loop. The first phase you get to fight the Cybie (watch out for the faster rockets), and during the second phase the Cybie becomes invulnerable and you have to deal with "fodder" instead. Kill all the fodder, and then get back at the Cybie.

 

The idea is cool, because -conceptually speaking- you get a fight that basically shifts between one larger threat, and several smaller ones. The problem I have with the fight is that the time at which the Cybie warps away is based on a timer, rather than on damage dealt by the player. If you play this one too defensively, you're in for a lot of meat, and to make matters worse there is a chance the Cybie warps out and turns invulnerable shortly before you deal the death blow, which happened to me the first time I played this map. Depending on how ballsy you are or how merciful the Cyberdemon is, this fight can either be over really quickly, or you're gonna be dealing with the fodder more often than you may enjoy.

 

The actual boss fight lends itself to either playing it safe at the cost of grinding (unfortunately repetitive) phases, or perhaps taking some minor risks here and there in favour of point-blank BFG action. In a way it's somewhat similar to the first Cyberdemon. Not gonna say more about that, you'll see it when you get there.

 

If you wanna see the latest hotness in terms of GZDoom based detailing, this is where you can get your fix, just don't be surprised if you can hear the rhythm of the SSG for the next several days no matter where you are and what you do.

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Kristian Nebula

  

Great map, stunning visuals and very atmospheric music! Played it on hard and the boss proved a bit too much... so I IDDQD'd it after a few tries and saving in the wrong place to have a try to BFG him down right in the beginning. :D MDK was also found a good use there...

Well done!

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  • File Reviews

    • By TheMagicMushroomMan · Posted
      5.5/10   The problem with DTWID is that the same concept has been carried out by countless WADS already - they just didn't draw any direct comparison to the original DOOM. So what you get here is a set of competent-but-generic maps that follows the same beat-to-death techbase>hell progression of DOOM. Just like 10,000 other vanilla style megaWADs. In the end, that's all this is - a WAD that attempts to mimic (not always successfully, as there are some questionable maps here and there) OG DOOM. Without the awe that comes with experiencing the original game for the first, you're left with a bunch of generic maps. The inspiration that ended up leading to the creation of this project causes the WAD itself to feel uninspiring. It lacks memorability and soul.
    • By printz · Posted
      A pretty tough level with an unusual design. There's no exit; your goal is to defeat all monsters. Good luck.
    • By printz · Posted
      Mostly a flat maze level full of illusionary effects. It's not a very complex structure overall, but pretty challenging. The exit is randomly hidden somewhere.
    • By Lol 6 · Posted
      For a wad made in 1995 it's a pretty convincing church, I like how detailed it is, as well as the graveyard, too bad it is quite short because it's fun (Although I understand that, as a deathmatch level, making it too large can make it unfun to play). The exit gates are an awesome detail too. Definitely check it out 5/5 stars   - xX_Lol6_Xx
    • By VoanHead · Posted
      Upon the release of The Ultimate Midi Pack for Doom 1 that replaces all midi slots w/ original compositions, I thought to myself "Hell Yeah, now I have an excuse to play DTWiD!". Besides the shameless plug, I would recommend everyone to give that pack a listen and perhaps a spin w/ this wad b/c god damn does it go together like peanut butter and nutella.   Onto DTWiD: Well, the people behind this wad accomplished the goal of mimicking the style of John Romero, Sandy Petersen, and last but not least Tom Hall. Every level breathes like it was made by any of the three gentlemen, and god damn I had a blast w/ this one. While certainly not as hard as your Plutonia, Rowdy Rudy 1+2, Hell To Pay, or even Good Morning Phobos, it has its own moments where it doesn't pull its punches. However, one of my main gripes w/ this wad is that there's a lot of secrets to find if you're a completionist like I am, as some of them are a bit tricky to hunt down. The maps are way bigger than the OG John, Sandy, and Tom Hall levels, and while it's great to mesh some good fights here and there, it at times felt like a slog to go through b/c of the size of some of these maps. E1 was the weakest in terms of fights here, as expected that you won't be fighting anything tougher than hitscan, imps, and pinkies. While the design was great, I admittedly got lost a few times trying to get my bearings and know just where the hell I need to go. E2 was a bigger improvement upon E1, and had a few moments where it was spooky, like things are really beginning to hit the fan. E3 (which unironically in the OG UD was my least fav episode that I couldn't even bring myself to finish) was probably the best episode of the bunch, everything was oppressive and coming for you, luckily there was an abundance of ammo to help you out in messy situations, more traps and better set ups than what E2 had and a way better episode than E1. The secret levels of all 3 episodes are the highlight of the wad.   While I wouldn't say that this wad is a "must play" b/c over time I started to get a bit exhausted on the size of some of the levels and figuring out where I need to go, and especially since I binged E1, E2, and E3 3 days each respectively, I had my moments where I was like "Please God let this be over". Overall, I would say this is more of a wad that if you really wanna check out, go for it, or a good recommendation for people who are just beginning their journey of playing community wads and want something ez to play.
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