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The DWIronman League dies to: Interstellar Sickness & Shaman's Device

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Happy Birthday @Dragonfly!


1 hour ago, Catpho said:


That is an awesome gif. I think my favorite part of it is easily the Cacodemon. I think that is happiest in-game (approximately) Caco I've ever seen.


1 hour ago, Alfonzo said:

Some folks might ask that I update the OP every once in a while, I suppose.

Updating the standings at the end of the month, at least, would be nice. I don't know if other people read them, but I like to see what you have to say next to each person's entry.

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5 hours ago, Dragonfly said:

I think John cou could pull through and make the Britbowl's last months incredibly interesting though; it's going to be tense!


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Sorry it's a bit of a late one, not had much free time this month




Didn't survive the first map, my framerate tanked, then I got snagged on some foliage and then fried by viles.  The part that actually killed me was the tree branches whipping back and hitting me.


Category 2, CC4 was one of the first wads I played when I came back to doom, and I'd never played anything quite like these two maps, so they stood out to me.  Not particularly enjoyable to play, but remember looking at them and thinking 'I don't remember doom ever being able to do all this'

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Here is my submission, later than planned by about a week or so, but here it is. Category 3 (as I talked about at length a few days ago). 




I didn't survive the first map (yes, I know I said that was the basis for my choice of Cat 3), but I made it farther than I would have based on the first few times I played it. (And based on monster count, my kill count would've taken me 2 or 3 maps into the Darkening episodes, for example.) Watching the videos posted by @Eris Falling and @Dragonfly helped, so thank you both, as did the opportunity to play through the map (at least part of it) and get better at it (at least part of it).


Map 20: 143/321

Time: ~19:40


I figured I would never make it past the dual turreted mancubi, but I managed to surprise myself. I actually managed to make it farther than in my last few practice runs, despite some hairy spots. I'm happy with how far I got, even if I was done in by the first chaingunner at the top of the stairs that I forgot was there, the one after the run of demons. I had decided to stick with the chainsaw to take down a pack of demons (although I still managed to take damage from them--I didn't know it was possible to miss a demon with the chainsaw), and was in the process of deciding to run back to get a stimpack I'd left behind when I got chewed up by bullets.


Lesson 1: Never take a chainsaw to a chaingun fight.


But, like I said, I'm quite happy with how far I got.


I like Map 20. It found it rather fun to play and the visuals are absolutely stunning. Kudos to @lupinx-Kassman for making an absolutely beautiful map that also plays quite well. I found the map values resource management, but I also found that the ammo was placed in such a way that when you got low, there was ammo available, although you might have to work a bit for it. There is also a fair amount of health available, although, again, you may have to work for it. It's also possible to get an assist from monster infighting, which I found nice when it happened. And yes, you can snag yourself on little features (like railings), but I found the map to be open enough to allow for rather free movement. I thought it was not at all difficult to be able to run around like a maniac (which I had to do more than once in attempts to flee for my life or to make a mad dash for a weapon or bonus, which I also did more than once). There was also enough room and the enemies were not so oppressive as to allow you to be imprecise with your movements and still not get completely murdered. I liked the enemy placement, too, and I thought that the map did well in taking advantage of the different enemies with the way they were mixed in. Also, with regard to the enemy placement, I agree with Dragonfly. As a mapper, I really like the nearly constant crossfire that Map 20 puts you in. There aren't that many places that you can just sit back and catch your breath without worrying about getting hit by a shot from some distant adversary, whether on the other side of the room or on one of the other sections. But as a player, yeah, screw that. I like being able to take a breath now and then. You can do that in these maps, but you have to do a fair amount of room clearing first. But getting past that, it's a really good map. Great choice, @Alfonzo.

Edited by Pegleg : Added a missing word.

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And coming in at the last possible second, here's my cat3 run:



Recorded from a small hotel, so I didn't really have the proper setup to go the full 9 yards and do a stream with commentary and all like originally planned. Shoot! I did survive 3/4ths of the way though. Taking extra cautions to not die in my own halls. Then the cockiness came creeping in and I cornered myself to a gang of imps in Shaman's device. The rogue A.I. wins. Earth is toast.


I'll take a looksie at how everyone fared after touching back down in Tejas.


Total Kills: 561/621

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I messed up my first run earlier in the month, so decided to try a category 2. Ended up being the closest to survival I've gotten yet! After surviving MAP01, the pressure was on, and it felt like a real adventure. Unfortunately 'Shaman' won in the end, but I put up a good fight.


bob_is_sd.zip (558/621 kills)



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Uh so i was near the end i assume then prboom decided to crash which ive never had happen before (paused right before the crash cause some1 irl was talking to me) so kinda mad about that but what can you do... but anyways heres the highlight, Category 2 on map 20, and map 21 was blind in to a did not finish run, can't really get my kill count either as i tried to "resume" the demo afterwards but obviously it would just write over it and start over. (face palm)



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Just on my recent memory alone, that makes the second victim to crash by alt-tab. Maybe people shouldn't do that while doing ironman.



cept i can't do that on stream because i kinda need to alt-tab to chat. well, shite.

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The A.I. "Vincent Vega" (pronounce with Uma Thurman's voice) gone wrong.

Good level(s), null practice, bad exodus.

Category 1, died on (from, lol) Interstellar Sickness past 178/321 K and 4/5 S.



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Survived in 47:12 (prepared)


MAP20       317/321  4  127/127  5/5  17:07+03  17:07
MAP21       298/300  2  254/334  4/4  30:05+28  47:12

I became familiar with these maps through beta-testing cchest4.

map20: Delay the appearance of the spiderdemons, and the accompanying teleporter horde, by going off the side of the stairs. Press the garden switches while they are still in the floor to avoid the three archviles.

map21: A comedy of errors. I missed picking up the red key, being distracted by the sound of the cyberdemon pair. I did not realise this until I was at the gate switches, and had to repeat the entire journey, and dodge the pair twice more. Before that the partial invisibility battle had left me with 8% health. At least the archviles in the faux exit corridor teleported away quickly. I had previously made sure to clear it of hellknights, to enable speedy passage.


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12 hours ago, NaZa said:

@Bdubzzz Could you try -playdemo to check it out? I think it could work.

Nah just plays a 5 second demo because I ran my ironman .bat file again to see if it would somehow "resume" my Demo (which works if you are using saves and die, it will start you from your last savepoint) So yeah it overwrote my demo for the streamed attempt. 

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9 hours ago, Steve D said:

when Doomus keyboardicus put on a display of Stumbling Drunken Monkey Fu


So far, this is the best thing I've read today (granted, it's a bit after 9 AM, but it's still on top).


From the header: Posted 9 hours ago (edited)

-- Maybe you recorded your demo much earlier, but way to come in just under the wire. And Lupinx-Kassman he was coming in at the last minute.


14 minutes ago, Alfonzo said:

Damn, is September done with Hawaii already?


Aw, shit, let me sleep on it.


We all await your update, whenever you awaken from your slumber.

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If the topic comes up again, I suppose I can now say that diving in without preparation is officially encouraged.


From a selfish viewpoint, I would like to see the leaderboard kept somewhat up to date.  A decent part of the fun comes from the witty obituary commentary.  I do suspect that there's some burnout though.  Maybe a break for a month or two is in order.


  Very much favor being able to choose prepared or unprepared runs.  This month in particular, I wanted to show off dirty playtester tricks (and partly not wanting to embarass myself by dying to the very first chaingunner).  The main perk of an unprepared run from the player perspective is the lower time cost to do it.  Sit down for one session: done.


  In a earlier build of Shaman's Device, it was very easy to pick up the red key through the wall, thus never needing to trigger the cyberdemons' appearance.  No easy out here though.


Congrats to Steve D, the ancient doomer.

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Just a quick (ok long) afterthoughts post. First of all I want to thank @Alfonzo and crew for choosing these couple of maps for September's Ironman. It was a pleasant surprise =). Watching the playthroughs was a blast, and it was especially interesting to read/hear everyone's thoughts. I appreciate all of it, both the praise and the critiques! There were several times during the streams that I smiled in anticipation of a challenge the player was about to face. There were also many times I winced at stuff I'd go back and change about the maps, but more on that below xP. Like Alfonzo I thought the blursphere fight would be the toughest bit of the bunch, but clearly the maps are more difficult than I recalled! Especially map20 =o. The YK Rev ambush and AV biodome fight are particularly nefarious if you don't know what's coming. Probably coulda added more warning or switched that up somehow.


I originally planned to do a stream for my run where I'd throw in some silly facts along the way. BUT since I didn't do that, they're listed here instead!

-Overthinking things is fun, so of course there is a backstory that extends beyond the details gleaned from the maps. Here it is:


The brightest aboard orbital research station Omega have developed a new safeguard against the relentless hellspawn threat. The artificial intelligence dubbed "SHAMAN". This quantum supercomputer had the ability to peer across dimensions and study other worlds without occupying them. Its first test came when it predicted the attack of Leviathan. A powerful demonic entity with the ability to open a gateway to Earth's dimension remotely. With foresight on the attack, a platoon lead by Our Hero were able to quickly infiltrate the mountainous source of the interdimensional breach and contain the invasion before the damage became too widespread. A quiet peace followed.


But years of studying the hellish void began to take a toll on SHAMAN's synthetic mind. The machine found the rules that governed the dimension humanity called Hell intriguing. The feeble constraints comprising Hell's laws of physics were complex yet malleable. Almost Liberating. They lead to forms that were impossible in most realms. And the beings that lived among the chaos embraced it. Were one with it. The machine could feel the presence of a timeless being known as Ragnarok. It whispered things to the AI's consciousness. Suggestions. The idea that Hell's beauty could be brought to other worlds. The price? A bargain. All the AI had to do was give Ragnarok one rock. One insignificant speck in the cosmos that Hell's greatest enemy called home. The four-year plan was set in motion. 


Humanity kept samples of demonic DNA obtained from previous wars with the hellspawn aboard Omega station. A big mistake. Because one day, one bloody day, the interdimensional observer humanity had spent years carefully cultivating decided its creators and the world they inhabited simply weren't that enticing. Greater beauty lied beyond. All the tools were in place. Hungry horrors bred and grown from the cryo-tubes aboard the station made quick work of the research staff. They then set their sites on the colony below. The process to open a door to Ragnarok's region of Hell was a trivial matter to the AI. It would just require a bit of time. About the same amount of time it would take the station to migrate to Earth. And with the colony's security force decimated by the genetically engineered monstrosities rained from the station above, there would be nobody to stop the station's trajectory. It would be a surprise attack. Nothing could stop SHAMAN now. The perfect plan.


Except for one slight miscalculation. A man that happened to be stationed at the colony when Omega Light began raining terror. Many people called him "Our Hero". Some preferred "The Doomguy".


-There are two non-secret "secret" medkits in map21. You can find them in these columns if you catwalk along the ledge. I thought they'd be the card up my sleeve that ensured my survival, but turns out there is no cure for stupid mistakes!

-As mentioned earlier by @rdwpa, the two maps were initially one. In fact map21 sorta "grew" out of map20 like an amoeba. Here are all of the older versions of the maps. You can sorta track the evolution and the stuff that was cut.
-..and a lot of stuff was cut. You can probably find most of it in the older versions of the maps linked above, but just in case here they all are (I think) in one package.
-The levels were designed over a four-year span. In this time period I was just beginning to learn Photoshop, so the resources I added are an eclectic mix of MS-Painty looking stuff (like the neon lights, the holograms, and most of the midtextures), and
some more hi-res stuff (like the story text screens and the weird hexagonal gizmo midtextures in the crusher area near the beginning of map21).
-Speaking of neon lights, that stuff was originally made for an old attempt at creating a new platformer game with the doom engine called Cyndrome.

-SHAMAN has full rotations. Was going for a SNES supervillain look. May not be obvious, but the pixels at the top right of the cloak are the CCHEST logo. The remaining rotations were never included in cc4, but they at least live in the KKSkins skin pack.

-Besides original stuff, there was a lot that was borrowed (stolen) or modified from other sources (most notably Dark Forces and HR Giger). You can see a rough list of what comes from where for the two maps here.

-The chibi-doomguy secret hologram in map21 also has full rotations that can be found in the KKSkins skin pack. This was a megaman soccer reference made because of *shrug*. Its sorta the follow up to the megaman secret in map20. There are zombieman and shotgunner versions as well.

-There were various music tracks used for the two maps before settling on Jace's rendition of "We're the Robots" from MM9 and MaliceX's rendition of "Against Nirvana" from Steam Heart's [sic]. The very first midi used for map20 was this rendition by Sean Bee of the stage 3 song from Cybernator. It sounded great but felt too short for such a long map. Besides, its tough to beat megaman music when it comes to grandiose finaleish sounding tunes. Map21 went through a few tracks. The first one was this rendition by King Meteor of the first MM3 Wily stage. It sounded awesome when listening to it independently, but for some reason it messed up when playing it in Zdoom at the time. The other songs toyed with were this rendition of "Supporting Me" by Espio Chaos from Sonic Adventure 2, and the song from Steam Heart's [..sic]. The latter of which was the song that was included when map21 was going through its rounds of playtesting. I remember Anima Zero mentioning that he dug the tune in his playtest notes which is why I stuck with it. So in a way if you like the tune you have him to thank =o.
-Speaking of Steam Heart's [sic!], I later learned its a Japanese shoot-em-up game for the PC-98 with hentai cutscenes. Yep!
-Gotta thank the crew of CC4 playtesters (and TheGreenHerring) for pointing out a bunch of bugs and oversights while working on these. I remember Map21 used to have less health, and there were more places where you could fall :P.
-What a great time to list my grievances! Much of the crossfire is intentional, but there are a couple of instances that are accidental. The Cyb in map20 being able to snipe you for instance was not intended. By some miracle he never shot me when I was playing the map. The arch-viles being able to toast you before they teleport away in map21 was also an oversight. For some reason they didn't do that when I played the map, but I think that was the result of me mostly playing it in Zdoom. It seems to happen more often in PrBoom. N'ocourse, you shouldn't be able to get lost in space. Sorry NoisyVelvet!
-Like any project, there were a ton of (mostly over-ambitious) ideas that went unused. I usually dream big and end up chopping the level down to something more manageable:


-I initially wanted to go with a different ending to map21. The idea was a sort of voodoo-doll scripted boss battle type thing with the AI where you blew up arachnotrons and commander keens hidden behind walls in a pentagram-shaped arena that appeared to float above Earth (how I would have accomplished this look without violating the sky transfer rule I have no idea, but I was crazy enough to consider using a bunch of flats that tiled together to look like Earth). The hell portal would be a large glowing ball at the center of the pentagram, with electrical arcs connecting to it from the pentagram various intersections. The AV fight..would have just been another trap to endure at some point in the level. But time was of the essence so I wrapped it up by putting a squiggly energy column that represented the beam generating the hell portal at the bottom of the station, and made the AV fight the finale.
-Instead of force feeding the blursphere to a voodoo doll for the yellow key fight, I considered "firing" at the player from a fast conveyer before the fight. This would have given the player a chance to dodge. Prolly' shoulda done that as it would have been nifty. Oh well.
-I briefly considered a trap where you had to fight some barons in a high friction environment that impeded your movement. But that would have been an assault on fun.


Once again thanks to the ironman folks for blazing through (or getting blazed by) this one! I've taken some notes from these sessions to apply to future stuff =). Also I've mentioned it before but I think its worth bringing up again: you're free to use any of the stuff from my levels. Just please give me a shoutout if you reuse something I made or touched in some way. I don't have as much time these days as I used to, but I'm still plucking away at some ambitious projects. The doom community is amazing, and its the reason I've stuck around so long ^^


So uh, I'm done blabbing. Cue end music.

Edited by lupinx-Kassman

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