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CasualScrub

So why is Alien Vendetta in particular so well liked?

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This is something I've never personally understood. It seems that AV always tops lists for map WAD's, yet I've never myself gotten the appeal of it. I don't find it that fun a mapset, and I also find it kinda ugly overall, IMO.

 

I guess I'm just wondering, why this megawad of all things?

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Probably because it's a classic that's still fun to play, coming from a time when slaughter wasn't yet a thing, along with HR and the Scythes (or certain maps from them at least).

 

Ugly? Yes, some levels have aged poorly visually, but it's still good overall.

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Bear in mind it was released 17 years ago now, so not only is there a large dose of nostalgia for many players, (many would name it as their first pwad experience) it was nothing short of mindblowing at the time of its release. I can totally understand the viewpoint of people who look at it nowadays and think its nothing special though, it hasnt aged as well as it could have imo

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29 minutes ago, CasualScrub said:

I guess I'm just wondering, why this megawad of all things?

Because it's a good mapset.

 

You are asking a question about why your subjective opinion doesn't line up with other subjective opinions, and people can only give you subjective answers. This isn't exactly a great premises for a thread and doesn't exactly lead to thrilling conversation.

At best we can only answer it's because you didn't play it 17 years ago when it came out, and you weren't playing what else was available then too. This stuff can be easily culturally specific, and that culture can change with time. Sorta like how KDiZD was considered a masterpiece when it came out and yet nowadays suffers great scrutiny (granted for much more serious problems in hindsight than what AV has). AV can be easily seen as much lesser accomplishment now if you don't have or choose to ignore context and the passage of time.

Edited by Edward850

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AV was the first real collab megawad from the scandinavian doom scene in a long while since HR,  in the style of HR with new mapping techniques from the Gothic DM series. It was also one of Anders Johnsen's last projects.

I guess you'd just have to be there in the community at the time to understand why it was such a big deal?

 

But it was a big deal. I played it for hours and hours...

 

Edit:  I did mention that it was nordic, but not everyone who contributed was, but it was mostly the "scandinavian style" or what is now "Compet-N Style"... does anyone map for speedrunning anymore? or is that just "every map" now?

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15 minutes ago, Csonicgo said:

AV was the first real collab megawad from the scandinavian doom scene in a long while since HR

Not quite sure what you're getting at here, but HR was made by two Israeli guys.

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1 minute ago, Grazza said:

Not quite sure what you're getting at here, but HR was made by two Israeli guys.

Well the four people that I know did the first real speedruns of HR and HR2 (that I downloaded anyway) called themselves "the nordic connection" or something along those lines, and Anders was definitely in that group.

 

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Played all of AV in the beginning of 2018 and will again. It's an objectively interesting wad. I had my formative gaming years during that era when it came out though, so for me it captures some of that middleground between rawness and polish the scene had in general, before le epic World of Corporate came along and sterilized everything. Some kind of proxy nostalgia.

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The reason why Alien Vendetta is popular in this community is because it was considered to be the last 90s made megawad that started around 96/97 and wasn't completed til 2001/2002. Not only its been very popular with demo speedrunning but its also been popular in cooping on various multiplayer source ports such as Zdaemon & Zandronum with weapon mods. Hell even recently a few years back there was a neat 2 map expansion from one of the mappers of the megawad.

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I too am not a huge fan of Alien Vendetta but I can understand why people like it. It came at a time when Plutonia, Memento Moris, Requiem and Hell Revealed were considered the "Golden Standard" and AV was a leap ahead of all of them. AV came out 1-2 year(s) before Scythe and was pretty much unrivaled at that time.

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Mostly because of when it got released and which features brought to the community. Honestly, I don't like it either, a big chunk of the levels are really uninteresting for me, with lots of tropes that people avoid nowadays.  Plutonia is miles away better, IMO.

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It was a big release at its time. It influenced lots of mappers, even this mapset influences mappers for today on small extend. Well, it's full of interesting themes and choices. Too bad that some maps didn't age well, like egyptian themed map - too big, maze like design, which kills interest after hour and half or even less. 

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To only have 4 or 5 duds in a 32 map set is pretty damn impressive even today if you ask me. 

 

There are spots of ugliness throughout AV but to just call it ugly and leave it at that seems super unfair - AV actually looks pretty good on the whole and some areas are really atmospheric. Maps are challenging but fair. I’ll admit that sometimes the progression is a bit too tough to work out but I find this to be just about as prevalent in modernish popular releases as well.

 

It seems to hold it’s own even today by just about any standard of critique you could use. Certainly aged better than HR and due to having a bit more balls probably aged a bit better than Memento Mori too, though that’s still more my speed overall.

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Probably AV is well regarded because of the timing of its release more than quality. It happends -also nostalgica.

 

Not really a huge fan no. What I've seen on youtube shows squarish levels which reminds me of 96 think of the first Memento Mori. Funny,I used to have a preconcived notion that scandinavian map creators tended to be good at their craft, but that is probably an anomaly.

Edited by NeedHealth

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It was the first wad, well after Eternal Doom, to have some epic and truly immersive adventure maps, mixed with some shorter affairs one the way. This coupled with a classic gameplay went to a harder direction, and AV it's probably also one of the first wads to features big and spectacular battles. Visually it's plenty of stuff that look awesome even today and for the times things like the lighting were pushed a step forward.

Like it or not it's one of the iconic wads of the community and still an influential work. Imo it's a must play, even only to have a greater perspective on how the mapping scene evolved, same for HR.

 

22 minutes ago, NeedHealth said:

Probably AV is well regard because of the timing of its release more than quality.

Lol no.

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I wasn't playing custom wads when this released so I lack the nostalgia factor. However, had I been, I could see myself having been impressed. Surely that would have stuck with me.

 

I actually didn't care for the wad when I first played it earlier this year. It had inconsistent pacing, such as short maps to long, maze-like maps, to slaughter maps, then back to normal maps. There were some questionable design choices as well (the Icon of Sin fight that basically requires strafe running or wall running always sticks out in my mind). However, I played it a second time a couple of months later and warmed up to it. Then right after that, I went through it a third time and I ended up enjoying it fairly well (being familiar with a wad goes a long way).

 

Looking at it now, I can see why it's well regarded. It's still not my favorite, but it's a solid three or four-star in my book. The big thing is that it has aged rather well compared to earlier highly rated wads like Hell Revealed. Whereas I can't recommend folks try the later in this day and age outside the sake of curiosity, I can definitely recommend AV and not feel dirty about it.

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I loved Alien Vendetta because of the familiar Doom 1 theming (I loved the use of Thy Flesh Consumed sky and architecture) and great music choice (from Doom 1 and other sources, really fitting). Also the difficulty curve was both challenging and fair.

 

Its cons are the overreliance on monster teleport traps and overuse of revenants, contrasting with really weak usage of pain elementals and arachnotrons. Interesting how nearly all the mappers converged on this. But it still flows better than wads such as Requiem which dry up near the middle.

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18 hours ago, Grazza said:

Not quite sure what you're getting at here, but HR was made by two Israeli guys.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Donner make everything except one map for HR? I remember Niv's contribution being quite minuscule. Like calling Scythe a two-man wad because Torn did a secret map. [I have been corrected. Disregard this.]

 

Also, AV has some nice detailing and ambitiously large maps considering vanilla limitations. It's also lightyears ahead of previous wads as far as pistol start balance goes. You can actually play the maps blind from scratch and have proper weapon/item progression to have a good time.

Edited by Spectre01

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4 minutes ago, Spectre01 said:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Donner make everything except one map for HR? 

 

Doomwiki lists Niv as lead designer for 6 or 7 levels and providing input on 3 or 4 others.

 

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1 hour ago, Spectre01 said:

It's also lightyears ahead of previous wads as far as pistol start balance goes. You can actually play the maps blind from scratch and have proper weapon/item progression to have a good time.

All fine except I got stuck on MAP01, I had no idea how the exit was supposed to open

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That green torch exit is one of the most confusing mapping design choices I've ever seen. What were they thinking? 

 

Besides that, though, I like AV's large maps like Beast Island, Nemesis, and Misri Halek, which is probably my favorite map ever (although opinions seem to be very divided on that one).

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Probably the Catacombs, at the very start where it lowers the lift behind the torches. But making necessary map progression hidden like a secret would be is not smart map design.

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5 minutes ago, TheMightyHeracross said:

making necessary map progression hidden like a secret would be is not smart map design.

 

Debateable!

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15 hours ago, TheMightyHeracross said:

Probably the Catacombs, at the very start where it lowers the lift behind the torches. But making necessary map progression hidden like a secret would be is not smart map design.

Doomguy isn't just brawn, he also has brains. Even the Doom manual said that the game also requires some thinking to progress. I want more maps to require fair secrets to move ahead.

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5 hours ago, printz said:

Doomguy isn't just brawn, he also has brains. Even the Doom manual said that the game also requires some thinking to progress. I want more maps to require fair secrets to move ahead.

 

Yeah but hiding the exit switch behind a green lamp on the first map is just a random move that makes no sense, is the only moment of its type in the wad, and doesn't contribute anything interesting to the map.

 

Edited by TheMightyHeracross

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