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GULAG

   (25 reviews)
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About This File

A five-level wad for Heretic, incorporating numerous new graphics. The appearance of each level is quite different; there is no unifying theme except that the action takes place on a series of islands. If I could have figured out how to replace the end screens, (assuming it's possible with Heretic), I would have named the levels:

1) On the Beach 2) Subterranea 3) Skull Mountain 4) The Flying Dutchman 5) Circus Maximus

Three of the levels are quite large (Circus Maximus is over 700K); I have been told that Gulag plays "too choppy" on a 486, so the wad may require a Pentium, or similar processor, for smooth gameplay.


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Unknown date

  
Architecturally great. But new textures is motley, work with light is lame, gameplay, oriented on cave crawling with savegames is fault. **

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Unknown date

  
Great. I'm downloading this WAD for fourth time now :) Never gets boring. - Trollmann -

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Guest

Unknown date

  
BEST,BEST,BEST

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Guest

Unknown date

  
I didn't play all Heretic levels (How could I?) but this is simply the BEST I ever did play. Great style of mapping, big, really epic Levels, a Pwad you will never forget!

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Unknown date

  
epic boredom

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Guest

Unknown date

  
This is a great set of levels, with clever puzzles and game play with some tight fights. I love it. 5/5 Kristus.

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Guest

Unknown date

  
Amateurish. In the rough. 2 stars.

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Unknown date

  
Balanced gameplay, puzzles are tough but not too tough, an all around excellent WAD!

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Unknown date

  
Quite an adventure! 5/5

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Unknown date

  
Great! 5 stars! Awesome, well-detailed level design and new textures, very splendid. For those who like Eternal Doom, this is a must play! The levels are enormous with a lot of switch-hunting to confuse you :) and wtf 1997? that's quite nice for its time.

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Unknown date

  
Decent WAD you have here. The cave parts were boring and summed up to be relentless switch hunts while the later levels were wonderful. 4/5

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Unknown date

  
very good the caves aren't boring imo either

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Unknown date

  
I would say "Best Heretic WAD ever", but I don't have tested all Heretic WADs avaiable. The fact remains that I love this one, levels have an "Eternal-ish" style with their puzzles and triggers. I need more PWADs like this one ! Legendary for sure. 5/5. ~Naan

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Unknown date

  
The first level is epic, and then the second builds on it ever moreso. I don't like how you have to wait so long to get the Dragonclaw, same with the Hellstaff and the Phoenix Rod also. It's not designed for wand-starts in any level which is a let down, and the third level is truly infuriating as going back and forth between 5 floors all the time is time consuming and it gets very monotonous.

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  • File Reviews

    • By Roofi · Posted
      Very decent map from 1995. As previous comments said, it looks like a workplace with two floors tons of openable doors.   The gameplay is very classic but very enjoyable. The progression may be quite confusing, especially about finding the yellow key which was hidden in a little compartment as if it was a secret. However , discovering each room was a pretty exciting experience.    Also this level has a cool sense of place. I really like the idea of creating "elevators" by using teleporters as well as the partially demolished 2nd floor.    Despite being an easy level, some traps may kill you like the surprise monster closet with barons near the author's signature located at the beginning.   Aesthetics are ok but I really enjoyed the use of light gradiants in some corridors , they make the stock textures look a lot better !
    • By Argenteo · Posted
      Hunting for those letters reminds me of Star Force, that alone makes the set memorable. Cute midis, some custom textures and fun gameplay. Maybe it was the first episode replacement I played. Long ago. :)
    • By rd. · Posted
      50 Shades of Graytall is a seemingly improbable success of a project that was born when Gez I believe jokingly suggested a texture theme composed of a pair of Doom 2's awkward misfits -- GRAYTALL and FIREBLU -- and a texture designed for basically one purpose (it's in the name): DOORTRAK. And then miraculously, Someone actually did it.    Naturally its restrictions would seem to consign it to the garbage bin, but it worked out very well, becoming a darling of the community (but not of livestreams).     Part of the reason 50 Shades of Gray worked so well visually was that despite the apparent memeiness of the theme, the chosen assets complemented each other quite snugly. GRAYTALL, with its obnoxious off-center red strip and that ugly arrow-like splotch, is tricky to get a handle on as a mapper, but with some anger effort spent on alignment, it gives you pretty red borders, either around the original gray core or freestanding, with can be fit to planes of arbitrary width. FIREBLU is an eyesore embodied, but with its purple-blue scheme, it comports well with the red strip of GRAYTALL -- in big picture terms, it functions as a splash of color among the other two desaturated materials. DOORTRAK is a crime painted '90s style over vast surfaces, but over sleekly shaped smaller ones it's not so bad, and something about being the only dark texture means that eventually your mind starts to perceive it as shade and contrast itself, rather than "this ugly thing customarily used for doors."       Add a very pretty primary skybox -- all inky blue and pink-tinged splotches, all stars and comets and nebulas in a spacebound sky -- that is fittingly sort of a "serious" take on FIREBLU in spirit. Add each mapper's ability to choose one texture to use for floor and ceiling (usually ones that meshed with the texture theme in some way). In the end, the working materials were ultimately quite harmonious in their minimalism.     The project head Marcaek was also picky about what maps he accepted, sending rougher work back to the drawing board or in some cases serving up outright rejections (especially to work sent in batches by one particular person who likes to chuck lower-effort maps at every community project within earshot). That makes him kind of the bad guy, some might argue, but strict QC is often a necessary evil for ensuring quality with open submissions.    Handed all of these elements with few defined rules or instructions for making it all work, the varied cast of mappers (which, looking at the roster again, has a suspiciously high number of "big names") did their own thing, in different ways, which was the final element of the magic gluing it together.       The typical 50 Shades map is fairly short and to the point, almost as if motivated to end before your eyes started yelling about the overexposure to FIREBLU, but of course Mechadon threw a curveball by being himself, with a long odyssey that is honestly little different from his usual sprawling feat of relentlessly intertwining architecture and crazy interlocking angles, just with these textures instead. There are abstract little gameplay-oriented maps that focus on punchy, kinetic action in varying molds -- pistol-and-shotgun pecking early, a brief and hyperviolent BFG romp late, and every degree in between. Some mappers attempted to reach into other dimensions entirely, fashioning surrealistic art pieces that compensated for the narrow palette by concocting something out of nothing -- as with Dobu's exploiting negative space in the form of invisible sectors, and NoisyVelvet being, "Hey, HOMs are a texture too!" Of course there were crates. Contrasting the natural lean towards abstraction is a bit of stubbornly playful representation: castles, faces, giant stick figures crafted out of sectors.   In sum, it's good shit.   
    • By Argenteo · Posted
      Dario Casali siege-carnage adventure. There's maybe a thousand monsters in here, so better find those weapons and start to think how to digest it all. Watch out for those nazi ghost. Built time about two. Funny.
    • By Yandere_Doomer · Posted
      The level design is absolutely great! i love how it makes you genuinely feel like you are in a building the whole time..   For some reason this wad gives me a Die Hard vibe [probably the whole "Go down a building" Motif... now all we need is a demonic Hans and we are all set]   but yeah.. great wad overall...
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