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MeetyourUnmaker

Cohesive wads/megawads

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Are there any good wads out there that have a cohesive theme from level to level to where it actually feels like your progressing? Hellbound feels like this, but the gameplay in that wad isn't very great.

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Going down comes to mind, not sure if that's what you mean but I thought it had a pretty cohesive theme from level to level.

 

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Hadephobia is arranged so that every map links together with some intermission text in the text file, which I think is pretty cool. Going Down also has a sense of progression, though each floor feels more like a fun new carnival ride than a piece of a greater story.

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Posted (edited)

I think Empyrion has that in some maps. It's pretty fun too. Revilution also has that going for it. Valiant might also be cohesive but I've only played the first 3 maps.

ZDCMP2 Is pretty much one super huge map so there's no way it isn't cohesive

 

DTS-T is cohesive story-wise. But its game-play is not that great either.

 

And, if I may advertise my own work, I tried to pull it off in Hell Invasion (The last room of most maps are the first rooms of the next map) and I think it is cohesive enough. But the game-play is bad.

 

EDIT: Forgot to mention: Hell on Earth Starter Pack has maps that are thematically similar. Base-Earth-Hell. It is made for Brutal Doom but it is possible to beat without it (not tested) and with Complex Doom (tested)

 

Edited by Zulk RS

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I tried to do this in Jenesis. You don't see the beginning of each upcoming level or anything (just about every exit uses the standard Plutonia-style end teleporter), but the levels' themes do kind of begin to blend into each other as you reach their exits. For some reason some of the maps in the middle of the set actually have exits with worded signs that indicate the location you're moving to next. Dunno why I wasn't consistent with that across the whole set (or at least the first 20 maps which are all techbases).

 

Reverie does this much more effectively by having a consistent exit/entrance style, and actually giving you a glimpse of the upcoming map right as you reach the exit.

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I'm not sure if any exist. Yeah, some people connect exits with starts, but that's usually just a cute gimmick and it doesn't really enhance the sense of place much since otherwise the levels look like completely separate entities. No, just both of them being techbases is not enough: there are already thousands of such maps existing, so what is so special about yours that I should suddenly get a feeling of continuity? Typically these connections don't even make any sense and if you actually join the two maps they will overlap in many parts. To my knowledge this hasn't been achieved properly yet. Maybe Scimitar is the best attempt so far.

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The first two wads that came to mind were Going Down and Fragport, but Going Down is way better. I still need to play the other wads mentioned here, I like when wads have a sense of progression, partly because it's so rare.

 

Also, I take offense to your claims, Memfis!!!!  I tried to make sure the connected exits in Doomed in SPACE all made total sense, plus the wad itself was constructed with quite a cohesive visual theme. If that combined with the continuing story text after each level still isn't enough to offer a solid sense of progression then I don't know what to say other than "damn you are picky".

 

I tried to do the same with UAC Rebellion way back in 2008, but I think the issue you mentioned shows up at least once where the areas would overlap and there isn't nearly as much story text there to guide the narrative either, so in this instance I think the complaint is totally justified. Even then I still think it added a great deal to the sense of continuity which is not at all necessary for a fun Doom experience but is still nice to see.

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I think almost every megawad is cohesive cos I don't imagine level sets being a single sustained campaign with no breaks

doomguy having downtime seems inevitable

of course it's just a video game but I don't buy that he massacres an entire megawad without sleeping

and slightly resent it when people do that elaborate one-map's-exit-is-the-next's-beginning because that's less sensible than the disjointed approach

life is disjointed

the man times out between maps to make soup that's how he is

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he just sleeps and eats in the doorway for connected exit maps

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I think for a real sense of connectedness you would need every map to have multiple views at the other maps. Something like... At the start of Map01 you're standing on a balcony and looking at the city. The opposite building is Map02. The radio tower you can see is Map07. The park below it is Map04. The faraway airport is Map10. And then as you progress you get to see these areas from different angles again and again, and eventually reach them.

 

Just having similar texturing and repeating the exit room at the start of the next level doesn't do much. I can easily edit the maps a little, rearrange them, and you won't even realize that they are in the wrong order because they have so little in common. That's not cohesive.

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1 minute ago, yakfak said:

the man times out between maps to make soup that's how he is

 

Well, I like maps where the end is the start of the next map, but I accept this addition as canon.

 

I like to think of the doom player character as a really placid, matter-of-fact person who treats stopping endless demonic invasions like a gardener approaches weeding. Making soup in the downtime goes well with that.

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Everyone has already mentioned Going Down, I'll throw Ancient Aliens into the ring.

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Echelon has a fairly cohesive progression of levels, especially early on iirc, where you're late for work at the UAC and the levels are quite compact. Also text between every level, which is a cool idea if a little excessive imho. Of course, Going Down is king. I feel like more sets should try for inter-level connectivity like mouldy did there--not so much making the start and end of one map connect (though GD does this by default via the elevator that begins and ends each level), but making it so there are occasional windows that give you an expansive view of an area from the previous map.

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58 minutes ago, Memfis said:

I think for a real sense of connectedness you would need every map to have multiple views at the other maps. Something like... At the start of Map01 you're standing on a balcony and looking at the city. The opposite building is Map02. The radio tower you can see is Map07. The park below it is Map04. The faraway airport is Map10. And then as you progress you get to see these areas from different angles again and again, and eventually reach them.

 

I wanted to do that for my old wad Cybernity, It was possible to see the outside of the map02 in map03, the outside of the map03 in map04... Maybe a day I will release this wad.

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back to saturn.

there was a reeeeally dope hub based level that i cant for the life of me remember...but im searching now

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1 hour ago, Memfis said:

I think for a real sense of connectedness you would need every map to have multiple views at the other maps. Something like... At the start of Map01 you're standing on a balcony and looking at the city. The opposite building is Map02. The radio tower you can see is Map07. The park below it is Map04. The faraway airport is Map10. And then as you progress you get to see these areas from different angles again and again, and eventually reach them.

 

Just having similar texturing and repeating the exit room at the start of the next level doesn't do much. I can easily edit the maps a little, rearrange them, and you won't even realize that they are in the wrong order because they have so little in common. That's not cohesive.

 

I believe Prime Directive does this. The whole wad is one location with teleports that to other maps that represent different sections of the location.

 

Though I had to stop playing it because I had to use a particular computer terminal to progress which I just couldn't figure out how to do.

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If you include ZDooM (and derivative) mods, there are many "that have a cohesive theme from level to level to where it actually feels like your progressing". Many of these mods feature a strong story-line, further adding to the sense of progression.

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The aesthetic of Doom is pretty surreal, and many exits are teleporters. Disjointedness is its own kind of continuity.

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Eternal Doom and Cleimos 2 both have interconnected maps even if some are only connected via teleports.

 

5 hours ago, Doomkid said:

he just sleeps and eats in the doorway for connected exit maps

 

What Doomkid said, though it helps that in Reverie's case the whole wad is just a dream. Maybe whenever someone cheats and uses IDDQD or IDCLIP, IDKFA etc. that's when Doomguy realizes it's a dream and becomes all-powerful.

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7 hours ago, Memfis said:

I think for a real sense of connectedness you would need every map to have multiple views at the other maps. Something like... At the start of Map01 you're standing on a balcony and looking at the city. The opposite building is Map02. The radio tower you can see is Map07. The park below it is Map04. The faraway airport is Map10. And then as you progress you get to see these areas from different angles again and again, and eventually reach them.

 

Just having similar texturing and repeating the exit room at the start of the next level doesn't do much. I can easily edit the maps a little, rearrange them, and you won't even realize that they are in the wrong order because they have so little in common. That's not cohesive.

after playing Dark Souls 1 this has kinda become my dream for my own level sets. not only repeatedly seeing various parts, but returning to previous maps coming from different angles and progressing through previously unreachable areas

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8 hours ago, yakfak said:

the man times out between maps to make soup that's how he is

 

I just remembered that there's a scene in the first Doom novel where Doomguy stops in an elevator shaft between levels to eat soup.

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