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Hyena

Hyena: Reviewer

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I wanted to possibly compete or have a shot at reviewing newstuff but so far have been unable to get in touch with Linguica over it.
Rather than irritate him with a bunch of whiney annoying e-mails I thought maybe I would ask some of the members of the community whether they think I would make a good reviewer.
Of course you can't decide this unless you've actually seen me review, and I want to see for myself if I am skilled enough, so I'll need some example wads to review.
Three or four should be good. Please no GL wads because my computer sucks.

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Maybe try

Kzdoom1 (tech style zdoom specific map)
Any map from Alien Vendetta (tough as nails gameplay)
Any map from Classic episode or 2002ado (standard Doom gameplay)
xfire3 DM map, because I like to pimp my own maps :)

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do anything. pick some random wads and review them.

if you want to do /newstuff reviews, you have to make sure you're prepared for anything.

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fen boi: I'd rather you not suggest wads that have already been met with great reviews long ago. Something I probably haven't heard of, that I can be fair and open minded about. Plus it'd be kind of boring if all my reviews were good ones.

I'll start with xfire3 DM, because I haven't heard of it before :p

Deathwarrior: Exactly. That's why I don't want to pick them myself. I want to be surprised.

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Xfire3 by Lee Szymanski
Screenshot1 Screenshot2
When I started it up in the first place my impression was that it was going to be a highly detailed DM map that is more eye candy than playability. That would have been fun to review. Unfortunately for my rapier wit it proved not to be, however. Trying the map with three bots (in zdoom, please don't kill me) it seemed a little boring, as the map was too spaced out for only four players. After four more bots were added, it actually became a lot more fun. This is the sort of map which I might play against Erik_Alm and get my groin stomped and lose miserably, yet continue playing. Of course, like all DM maps, once you get to the point that you know the map well enough to describe it to annoyed passersby it tends to get a little less fun as there seems to be no more progression. And one other flaw is that some parts of the map are so detailed that other parts just look like square box rooms in comparrison (Screenshots one and two) though this isn't so much a detail problem as consistency. All in all, I'd rate this game one thumb up-my right thumb-and one thumb partially between up and sideways-my left thumb, which has lost all feeling since the console wars of 1993.

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Operation: Lightning by Stephen Clark (The Ultimate DooMer!)
"You are Jody Russell, a top space marine. Your call sign is 'Kill Crazy'"
Well, that's enough of that. Jody Russel is a space marine who looks exactly like that guy in the game Doom. Except that when he gets hurt he goes "OWGHH!" so you can see the major character difference.
But anyway, this wad has everything! Bad detail, bad texture use, bad weapon and item placement, bad story, and more!
The graphics are modified so that skills 2 - 4 are given more interesting colourful names. Skill 1 and 5's graphics are completely erased. The author seems to think that by eliminating these he forces you to pick the "good" skill levels, because only "fags" play "I'm too young" and "Nightmare!" is sooooo hard!!!!!!!
Whoever this "Ultimate" Doomer is he wouldn't know monster placement if a Cacodemon bit off his penis. Level one starts with one such caco stuck between two walls and you are forced to kill it with a pistol while it writhes. You then continue into a very large open maze full of ineffectual monsters-come on, chaingunners and arachnotrons would be good, but random sprinklings of imps and demons can't hit you in such a wide area-where you have to hit a whole bunch of annoying switches which you very well can't find without hitting the TAB button.
Other levels get worse. One level is almost entirely ONE texture. Not to mention it's blinking. If nobody here can tell me what's wrong with a whole level that blinks I die a miserable, jaded man.
The one thing that saves this megawad, I think is that some of the bad mapping actually is pretty funny, so download this masterpiece at your discretion. May cause drowsiness, nausea, upset stomache, and in some extreme cases stigmata.

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Hyena said:

Whoever this "Ultimate" Doomer is he wouldn't know monster placement if a Cacodemon bit off his penis.


Lol, you're funny man. I like your reviews.

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Ultimate DooMer said:

Try this one. It's an 11-level wad that has never been reviewed before. (except in newstuff, but that was months ago)


why did you do that? you've made such better levels since then. Maybe some people like to get shredded. I hope your penis heals up okay. :(

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Well, that was my first real attempt at mapping, and it was made well before I even thought about releasing stuff. I made it simply because I got a few ideas and I wanted to make some really tough levels. So it was made just for me, but after finding how to ftp stuff I eventually decided to release it anyway, purely so it was out there with my other stuff.

So, in a way, I don't really care what people say about this, as it has served it's purpose (ie. personal enjoyment), it was my first set of maps and it's 2 1/2 years old anyway.

<rant>

The trapped caco at the start was intended to remove your starting ammo, because (if you hadn't noticed) it's a chainsaw/berserk level. which is also why the creatures in the sewer, and indeed the whole level are weak. And in case you didn't notice, they can hit very easily - it's full of sludge and you've only got hand weapons! I introduced the monsters gradually, in order to set up interesting challenges (eg. map 02 - confined spaces, mostly small, but a few big monsters, map 03 - open spaces, mostly big monsters, all with just shotgun and chaingun)

Also about map 05 - it's tense, creepy, scary and hard. I suggest trying it with e1m5 music and no iddt.

Besides, you won't know what the gameplay/monster placement is like unless you've actually played it. There's no way you have, as it takes me 5 hours to complete, and there was only 3 hours between me mentioning it and you reviewing it!

Meanwhile, I'm trying to work out what's funny about it. How one can basically say it has 1337 qualities is beyond me....

So, basically your review was poor - ok, detail/textures etc. can be picked up in a short while if you whizz through it with idclev (and yes, they are a bit basic - I was in my early days of mapping), but gameplay/balance/challenge etc. cannot be reviewed without playing it in full. Maybe another Liam is emerging....

</rant>


Use3D - questions answered above, and cacos don't exist in reality, so I don't have to worry about healing up. Besides, he hasn't played it in full, so he doesn't see the ideas behind the monster placements in the first 3 maps. (as those are more distinctive) He also hasn't seen the icon of sin challenge in map 11.

Epyo - I wouldn't let him know about Capslocked if I were you! I think it's great, but he'll probably find a million things wrong with it...

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Ultimate DooMer said:

Epyo - I wouldn't let him know about Capslocked if I were you! I think it's great, but he'll probably find a million things wrong with it...


OMG LOL!! Then again that might be true...I didnt know what "lower unpeg" did yet =D

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Ultimate Doomer: I'm glad you aren't discouraged by my review. I was afraid I was a little harsh there.
Just remember, nobody's great the first time around. Take a look at some other wads, develop your own ideas, and practice a lot.
I would be embarrased to show my first wads (which were for heretic, by the way) and you're showing a lot of dignity.

I look forward to your next wad.

And by the way, about my "not playing" your wad. I used a little trick I use now and then for reviewing. I play a map for a while until I get killed a few times or get bored of it, or just become curious of the other levels, then I idclev to the next one.
So, yes, I do think I did get a sense for what a lot of the levels were about. Although some I did spend more time on than others.

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"Epyo - I wouldn't let him know about Capslocked if I were you! I think it's great, but he'll probably find a million things wrong with it..."

I won't go into a full review here, but it wasn't so bad. The detail wasn't great, but it was easily livable. The monster and item placement were both excellent. One weird thing was the crummy graphics such as the title screen and "ANNOYING" status bar, but I think those were supposed to be funny, or at least not to be taken seriously.
Not all of the maps follow a traditional doom style, but they're interesting and unique enough.

I try to be fair with my reviews. Although sometimes when I'm rating something badly I like to get carried away, but who doesn't?

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"And one other flaw is that some parts of the map are so detailed that other parts just look like square box rooms in comparrison (Screenshots one and two) though this isn't so much a detail problem as consistency"

Your comparing the main outdoor view with a small connecting corridor, if you turn 180 in the second screenie you'll have a lovely view of the second main room. There are good reasons why there isn't any detail there, the main being HOM (it is Doom2.exe compatible). Very very picky.

"Trying the map with three bots (in zdoom, please don't kill me) it seemed a little boring, as the map was too spaced out for only four players"

The zdoom cajun is crap, i've never seen one use the plama on xfire3.
The map plays great with four people, and you can zip around the map very quickly (which is the point).

And er you don't actually explain what the map has eg number of rooms, weapon types, how well connected etc. I can't find liams review but he did exactly that.

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Ultimate DooMer said:

Maybe another Liam is emerging....

My thoughts exactly. The force of a review is lessened, not enhanced, if it includes insults. OK, it can make it funnier to read, but is that really the main purpose of a review?

Personally, I didn't enjoy Map01 of Operation Lightning, but that's because I suck at Tyson - can't really blame the mapper for that.

Hyena said:

I used a little trick I use now and then for reviewing. I play a map for a while until I get killed a few times or get bored of it, or just become curious of the other levels, then I idclev to the next one.

Hmm. Isn't this a bit like a book reviewer who reads a bit of the first chapter, leafs through the rest, and then feels qualified to comment on the plot? (Yes, yes, I know that writing proper reviews is a difficult and often unrewarding task...)

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fen boi said:

The zdoom cajun is crap, i've never seen one use the plama on xfire3.


The reason that they don't use the plasma is because of the weaponprefs of each bot in the bots.cfg file. Most of the time it's 012345678 or something else daft.

Grazza said:

Hmm. Isn't this a bit like a book reviewer who reads a bit of the first chapter, leafs through the rest, and then feels qualified to comment on the plot? (Yes, yes, I know that writing proper reviews is a difficult and often unrewarding task...)


I fully agree. To get the feel of a wad and how the gameplay unfolds, you need to play it all the way through, even if that means cheating at some point (as then you just say that 'some players might find it too hard on UV' or something similar), rather than taking this "oh, this first part of map 01 is impossible so I'll not play the rest and say the gameplay is crap" type of attitude, which I'm sorry to say is not the first time I've come across it.

I know that it can take a lot of time and effort to review properly, (as I've found out recently) but at the end of the day it's not fair on the mapper, who's spent all that time building a wad only for the reviewer to say it's totally crap (and hence turning people away from the wad) when he gave up after 10 minutes cos he found the first bit too hard on skill 4 or something.

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Ultimate DooMer said:

The reason that they don't use the plasma is because of the weaponprefs of each bot in the bots.cfg file. Most of the time it's 012345678 or something else daft.

AFAIK don't the bots in ZDoom use the weaponprefs at all.

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Legacy Cajun managed to get the BFG eventhough it requires jumping between crates in map03 of Nimrod..

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Playing versus bots tells you very little or nothing about a WAD in respect to multiplayer DM. Keep in mind most DM WADs aren't designed for (wasted on) botplay.

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Do you review graphics wads? If you do, review Lizardwar.
http://www.geocities.com/lizardcommando/enter.html

or if you don't want to look at the site:

http://www.geocities.com/lizardcommando/downloads.html

If you finish reviewing that one, you can review Pokestein if you want. It not only has graphics in it, it has levels. *note* That's the first mod I ever made, so expect it to be crappy, really crappy...

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Well, some people didn't like some of my reviews here, so I'm going to just make a clean sweep when I take a stab at newstuff.
I think I need to do ones that I've had time to play through and give more thoughtful analysis.

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It's all right, Hyena. No one can be 100% completely perfect for everyone in this world, just do the best as you can ;)

You were here before my time and I can realize from the deep of your heart has definitely put enough and your best efforts into this. I sincerely appreciate that, you're great, keep it up!

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