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valkiriforce

Sargasso - A Boom-Compatible Space Adventure for DooM II - Released!

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Yeah, I was a little concerned about it but seeing other files with multiple files with similar names I figured it would probably locate the correct one with the information given. I'll see about giving this a proper reupload soon!

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Just out of curiosity, what did you use to create that text document? Not that it makes any sense, but it looks like the idgames link for Sargasso IS using the right text file, but somehow the formatting got fucked and a question mark was added after every single character. I’ve seen this happening when transferring docs between macs and PC’s - I have a hunch something like that has gone on here too, and that the second text file didn’t actually cause the trouble at all and was just a red herring. Just my little theory!

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37 minutes ago, Doomkid said:

but somehow the formatting got fucked and a question mark was added after every single character.

 

Because the codification of the /idgames page is CP-1252, yet the embedded .txt file is using UTF-16LE with BOM. The file sargassotxt.txt has to be coded as UTF-8 with / without BOM (notepad.exe always saves with if you choose UTF-8), UTF-16LE with BOM or similar, yes or yes due to the use of the block symbols. As for sargasso.txt, CP-1252 should be used, and will match the very same file in UTF-8 without BOM because no special characters are used. Do not use UTF-8 with BOM because then the /idgames page will show in the first line these characters: 

 

Summary: use notepad.exe and save sargasso.txt as another file using ANSI codification.

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^ I was literally just going to bring that up, as that seems to be the conflicting issue since I saved the other text file in that format. Probably got left as such instead of switching it back to what I normally use.

 

Also, the bad news is I already sent out a fix with some adjustments, but the text file is the same format so it'll probably just come out the same. I'll have to send out another fix...

Edited by valkiriforce

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I just started playing this wad and I think it's pretty fun. My biggest surprise was when map01 succeeded in being entertaining while making the player fight with just the pistol. Smart use of exploding barrels is not something I often see in wads. I tend to forget they even exist.

 

Custom monsters and weapons seem to fit the project well, and so does the enviroment, although I'm really not a fan of huge open spaces and corridors, present in all of map02. Seems like very lazy design to me. I'm going to stop my playthrough for now, and play the rest on co-op, so I might drop some more feedback once I'm done with that.

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Glad to hear it's been a fun experience so far - I can elaborate on some of the decisions that went into this episode:

 

This was a very personal project when I began work on it, and I knew I would be making decisions that people weren't going to be fans of. One of the ideas at least for MAP02 was making a large, open space station map akin to the real Sargasso hideout found in Star Fox Assault. I was well aware it would be difficult to work an environment like this into a more engaging encounter-based setup like what people are used to in Doom patchwads, so I focused more on the overall atmosphere of establishing the new trooper soldiers and little engaging elements like deactivating the force fields or adding climbable ladders. It may be a slog to most people but it was an open design I wanted to flow with going into the second map, and it gives the player enough time to learn about the new enemies. MAP03 likely paces it much better being a smaller setting with some tricky encounters, while some maps after might be a little on the long side for some people, and that's okay. It was intended to be a 3-map mini-episode originally but I had put enough work into the sprites and DeHackEd lump that I wanted to expand it into something bigger. That's pretty much how the development of this episode went down - even if some maps seemed too large or filler (maps 6 and 8) I felt I had achieved what I intended in approaching it more as it's own game rather than another patchwad among so many others.

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So I finished playing the wad on co-op a few days ago and it was mostly a fun playthrough. It definitely seems like you succeeded in making it a one of a kind experience, as I can't think of many projects similar to this one. I look at this wad more positively than negatively, but I definitely have a few complaints.

 

It might come down to the fact that I was playing on co-op, but I found many maps to have incredibly confusing layouts and I got lost constantly because of that. I also didn't enjoy some of the hitscanner-focused encounters, which felt like cheap ways to damage the player. Aside from that, the sheer amount of invulnerability spheres in this wad is downright unethical. It's fine if you want to center your gameplay around that powerup, but if you want to do that, for the love of god, change the blinding effect to a different one. I don't know how many people have the same problem with this powerup as me, but as soon as I pick it up, I can barely look at the screen until its effect runs out. This resulted in me actively avoiding these spheres every time I spotted them.

 

So yeah, that would be it from me. When none of the issues I mentioned were present, I enjoyed immersing myself in the custom features this wad introduced, but they were present a bit too often for my taste.

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@Lorenz0 I honestly wished I could have changed the invulnerability filter through DeHackEd, but I wasn't sure it was possible. I noticed in the Doom 2016 vanilla mod it was possible but I wasn't able to figure out what they did to change the filter. If you happen to know how to change it I'd greatly appreciate it, as I could likely give this an update.

 

[EDIT] Okay, so I just learned it's a colormap issue. Not too familiar with how to create those...

Edited by valkiriforce

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For non-ZDoom ports you need to edit the COLORMAP lump. Colormap 32 is the one that's used for invulnerability so that's what needs to be edited. I can't say I've done this before so you will have to find some tutorial on how to exactly do that.

 

This however has no effect in ZDoom-based ports and there you will need to use DECORATE. This is the relevant actor definition from the DECORATE inside D4V.wad:

Actor DH_Invulnerability : InvulnerabilitySphere replaces InvulnerabilitySphere 2022
{
//Powerup.Color 15AB00
//Powerup.Color 15AB00
Powerup.Color GreenMap
Powerup.Colormap 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 1.0, 0.0
//+FLOATBOB
}


Unrelated, however, if you're going to make an update could you double check if bars that form sector 695 in MAP10 could break the map in coop? The bars seemed to have hindered progression when we played this back on TNS but when I tried to reproduce it I couldn't see how that could happen. But you will know better how that whole area works.
 

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I do remember when that happened, and I checked the map at the time to see how that could possibly have happened. What's interesting is the two switches activate two other floors outside that area and they seemed to work fine - it was only one of the floors which gave access to sector 844 and 634 which opens the blue-barred area. My best guess as to what happened is somebody stood in the nearby hall below one of the rising floors (sector 845) at the time somebody triggered the switch function, thus blocking the floor from rising up since the player would be hitting the other sector's nearby ceiling, even though its other corresponding sector tag was activated. That was why I included a 64x64 opening in the ceilings next to both of those floors so it would be impossible to block it.

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Very cool mapset. I'm at the last level before completing the wad and instead of writing a review , I will just point the good and bad points from my perspective. 

 

Good points :

 

- The new weapons' skins and sounds. I love kitsch sounds of the 90' concerning the weapons.

- The maps are not very detailed but have a great architecture and a very spacious layout.

- The skin of "zombies" in general as well as their sound. the plasma zombie and the "mancubus zombie" are also good variants.

- The rather unusual use of spheres of invulnerability. I liked to find several of them on some maps.

- I like playing difficult wads but also some with fair difficulty like this one. 

- A lot of exploration and some variety. Map 05 was my favourite map in the level.

- The new sky which combines a black and red tone.

 

Bad points :

 

- The clones. The hyperactive plasma marines traumatized me in Scythe 2 so I think it's a bad idea. However , you were pretty fair. Map 08 was far less annoying than Scythe 2's map 31.

- I would prefer to see the traditional doomguy's face but it was not the main problem. Wounds are not really pronounced when your health is low. I would not be against seeing our furry character be covered of blood like the doomguy !

- The red revenants and the Afrits look a bit out of place compared to the whole theme. They look too hellish imo.

- The new sounds produced by our character annoyed me a bit counterwise.

- This wad use good tracks in general but some tend to be too repetitive. (Map 04 for instance if I remember well..)

- As the original Doom , The flying spider-mastermind is pathetically much weaker than the flying cyberdemon.
 

 

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I completed all maps on UV. I just want to write little comments on each map. :)

 

Map 01 - A pretty fun level if you know how to get the berserk. I was confused at first, especially since the new "demons" are faster. Map 01 introduces rather well the gimmick with the breakable glass.

 

Map 02 - A level that I really appreciated for its long corridors and its very large room with boxes. The white sectors representing the shiny part of the glass is really an ingenious idea.

 

Map 03 - Pretty cool level introducing the "plasmagunner."

 

Map 04 - Same remarks than map 02 concerning the layout. Pretty enjoyable level.

 

Map 05 -  My favourite level , maybe mainly thanks to the music. The progression was rather exciting.

 

Map 06 - Brutal level but fun thanks to the possibility to create infights in the large corridor.

 

Map 07- Probably the most unique map in the mapset. The rocky landscapes give a breath of fresh air for a wad consisting mainly of techbases in the middle of space.

 

Map 08 - I didn't like this map.  I found this idea stupid in Scythe 2 so I think the same for this wad. Sorry.

 

Map 09 - A rather big exploration map with TNT vibes. I liked this one for its dark ambiance compared to the rest. 

 

Map 10 - Also a very nice map but I found it much too lengthy. Map 09 is already long enough, I would have preferred to have big fights rather than a ton of switches to press in a succession of rooms. This map ended up to bore me to be honest.

 

Map 11 - Pretty tough map with a clever use of Spider-mastermind and also flying Cyberdemons. The first area was very cool. However the last part with the clones was unnecessary and very unfair. I nocliped to the last switch to end the level.

 

Map 12 - I always enjoy to see credits maps. It looks very inspired of Mayhem 2018 , am I right?

 

 

Map 13  - Fun map.

 

Map 14 -  Can't let you do that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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