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Saltman

What is the scariest classic Doom level?

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So I just thought about the fact that Doom 1 and 2 aren't exactly scary. I wonder then which level is, well, the closest to being scary?

 

 

I guess Limbo has the scariest atmosphere, but I also found Spawning vats a bit scary the first time around. Against thee Wickedly was sort of scary with that Cyberdemon far away waiting for you I guess.

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Probably Deimos Lab or Command Center. Halls of the Damned is a possible 3rd runner up. 

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I recall that when I was playing as a child I found Deimos Lab and Mt Erebus to be the most scary.

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Posted (edited)

E2M6: Halls of the Damned.

 

I really, really, REALLY did not want to go looking for that red skull key in the dark maze. Some nasty crushers, a forced slime run, and a false exit are just icing on the cake.

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I never found any of the maps "scary", but I knew many people who did.

 

Most common I heard was E1M8, E2M6, and E3M9.

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I always found E1M8: Phobos Anomaly to be quite scary. The music is forebonding and totally chilling, the encounter with the Bruiser Brothers is also a highlight, and then, that strange ending where you win by dying... Uf! i remember not understanding that, hence, it made me feel the fear of the unknown as almost no other map give it.
From Doom 2 i don't recall a map that gives me shivers or something.
TNT: Evilution, on the other hand, has planty of moments that might take you unguarded:
-Human BBQ: that sole starting area was really different from what was implied on the UD & D2, this starting area tell that the demons, literaly, eat people. Remember feeling nauseas about that.

-Wormhole: mindfuck to the core if you decide to explore the map.

-Deepest Reaches: seriously, how more deep it can go? That made me shiver.

-Central processing: The big open area of this map made me feel fear to getting lost and stray far away from the boundaries of the playable area. Marvelous!

-Pharao: i feel the horror of the aeons while entering that forsaken pyramid, and then, when i see those giant thrones. WOW!

-Mount Pain: Not much scary here, but the sewer like area, the disaster area written in blood, and then the flaming mountain far away... yeah, i feel like this really was more similiar to the idea of hell that church and religion teached people to fear.

 

Plutonia:

-Haunted, but that was also somewhat silly... and fearsome hahaha.

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Playing through both Doom 1 and 2 for the first time last year, there were a few levels that stuck out to me and that I remember finding pretty tense.

Particularly, E2M4 was a little bit scary the first time around, especially when you don't know what's going on and you end up in a pit with Barons and Cacodemons. The surprise Cyberdemon in E4M6 was also a shock. The majority of my first run of Doom 1 happened during the night hours, which may have amplified the tension.

Some other levels are more scary in concept rather than execution, for instance Doom 2's Map16, where that red brick house that looks like it's packed with bodies and organs is something you probably shouldn't think too hard about.

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Posted (edited)

E2M2 gave me the creeps as a youngster. The map seemed like an overwhelmingly large maze with nowhere near enough ammo when I was newb, and that music track is unrivaled (imo) in terms of creepy Doom tracks.

 

E2M8 also creeped me out as a kid. "What could possibly be strong enough to kill and string up 4 barons...?"

 

Edit: P41R47 names a lot of places where TNT got the creep factor right! I was probably about 9 by the time I finally got my mits on TNT and, in addition to the creepy little spots that Doom1/Doom2 generally lacked, the soundtrack was clearly a cut above those found in D1 and D2. It really set the mood!

Edited by Doomkid

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Halls of the Damned for sure.

 

Also maybe Tricks and Traps? I remember the suspense of wondering what could be behind any of the doors.

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As a child, Limbo was the spookiest level for me as I knew I would die, it was the ever looming threat in any playthrough that marked the point in which I would croak and I dreaded it.

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E1M5. You've got those spectres roaming around in the dark corners, plus the creepy music really sets the tone.

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I never had a level I was really scared of from doom 1 and 2, because I wasn't so young when I first played them...

If plutonia counts as classic doom, though, you all know which one I am going to say. Hunted! This level scares the shit out of me to this day. I can't stand it, the confusing tripwires, the bunny music and the archviles' evil laugh in the nearby corridors...

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Other people probably wont agree but I would say map 30.

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The levels that gave me the most creeps were E2M4: Deimos Lab and E3M5: Unholy Cathedral. Both levels have a very strong atmosphere and a darker feel to them. I also found E3M4: House of Pain to have a similar design in that sense, but I think it falls apart as you progress into the level.

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I think the only thing that originally creeped me out was the first encounters with the Pinky demon. It was so fleshy and weird looking.

 

While I don't find any particular level creepy, Map 28 The Spirit World's scrolling spine textured halls used to make me a bit off-put. I didn't like staying in the scrolling hallway at all. Nowadays I love that stuff. lol

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I've never felt scared with Doom, considering the fact that I'm pretty young so I did not get to played during the 90s or even 2000s, but I did find some levels quite creepy in the spooky factor. The whole Inferno chapter had that satanic vibe going on, and the MIDI song for E4M1 was so tetric.

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how the hell hasn't anybody mentioned Gotcha?!? I ran in that room all excited, then bam, Archie, SM, and a Cybie!

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Posted (edited)

E1M3, E2M4, E2M6, E3M2, E3M5, MAP06, MAP25, MAP28

Edited by pcorf

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I think E1M3 was the first really scary moment, when you get the blue key and then suddenly the lights go out and a door opens with some imps. Pretty tame by today's standards or once you've played it a few times, but at the time such a lighting change was very dramatic and unexpected.

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First time I played Doom was on the SNES when I was a kid. I think the map that spooked me the most was Deimos Labs and its long, dark-ass tunnels.

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Posted (edited)

I agree with @plums on the lights-out moment in E1M3. That was a good jump-scare.

 

The one that really got me, though, was Tricks 'n Traps. It was my first encounter with a Cyberdemon and it totally freaked me out. The first "moo" of the Siege Cow was a nearly pants-wetting experience, and when I watched that giant thing kill a bunch of Barons, and then kill me a few times, I thought I'd never get any farther in the game. I guess I was overwhelmed by the shock of instant death by rocket. I managed to escape that room and then I hid in the neighboring room, listening to the Cyb clatter and clank and grumble on the other side of the wall, while I sweated and wondered what the hell I was going to do.

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I'd say E2M8. When first playing it you started in this small room with ominous music playing, then you get out  - MOOOOOH - Stomp - Stomp - Stomp - Splat, you're dead without ever knowing what hit you. Of course with higher resolution and some foreknowledge it is far less scary but back in 1994 when first playing it this had quite an effect.

 

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I found the mazes on E1M2 and E1M4 to be tense as a child.

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I played Ultimate Doom/Doom 1 much later, so nothing from that.

 

For Doom 2 however, for some odd reason, I still find The Crusher scary. I don't know why. It's not the hardest level and it's nothing special either. Even though I can handle the map just fine on UV, every time that map loads up, I just don't want to move out of the safety of the small starting "square".

 

If I had to guess the reason, it might be because when I was like 7 or something, I had a used copy of Doom 2 with some saves already on it. One of the saves were titled "DJ" or "DK" or something like that and it took me to near the exit door on MAP06. The demon is already dead and so are all the other enemies of the map. The difficulty was HMP or UV (not sure). The player had health in the 40s and somehow had Light Amp googles. After running around the empty map, the light amps ran out. I for some reason thought that the power in the map was going off and then everything was in dark. I was looking around for a light switch that didn't really exist. Then I exited the map and was insta-destroyed by the Mancubi in MAP07 because at that time I wasn't even good enough to get past MAP05 on ITYTD. I guess it left an impression or something? I'm still creeped out by MAP06

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Dark Pulse said:

E2M6: Halls of the Damned.

 

I really, really, REALLY did not want to go looking for that red skull key in the dark maze. Some nasty crushers, a forced slime run, and a false exit are just icing on the cake.

 

Let's think of it on Nightmare.

 

I couldn't finish that map on Nightmare. That map has finished me instead.

 

Yet there are people who say E2 is easier than E1.

 

I disagree with those.

 

Respawning enemies in E2 M6, oh my good. They make the game just hell.

Edited by Can't play on Nightmare

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Ah, i forgot about the dark maze in E2M6! That also scared the hell out of me.

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