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King S P O O N

What makes a good weapon?

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I know this is an odd and complicated question, but I'm genuinely lost on this one. Since I've been working on making my own mod and figured out how to create my own custom weapons, I've been asking myself what makes a good weapon. Namely, what are some things I can do to make my weapons feel good and fun to use? I understand sound design, recoil, ammo use, and whatnot, but there are some other things about weapon design that I don't fully understand the implications of. Also, can I or should I add weapons to my map packs if I feel it'd be more fun with it? I'm more of a map maker myself, and adding custom weapons and monsters is a new avenue I haven't explored yet; one that I'm really curious and excited to delve into.

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9 hours ago, King S P O O N said:

.... I've been asking myself what makes a good weapon....

This does not directly answer your question (at least in the way you want), but what makes a "good weapon" really depends on the context:

 

1. Is the weapon the only new one in the player's armory? If so, it will need to match the DooM weapon being replaced in terms of functionality (e.g., power, speed of fire/reload, accuracy).

2. How is it intended to be used - melee, close-quarters, long-distance? For example, a melee weapon (such as a heavy mace) can be given a lot of power, but is slower to wield.

3. Against which enemies could it be used; is it a niche weapon? As an example, DooM's shotgun can be used reasonably effectively against pretty much the entire DooM bestiary. And DooM's DB shotgun is arguably unsurpassed in its versatility.

 

9 hours ago, King S P O O N said:

.... what are some things I can do to make my weapons feel good and fun to use?

Ultimately, one of the key elements of game weapon design is balance. If the weapon is powerful, it should be more difficult to use (e.g., extra reload time, unpredictable recoil, splash damage, etc.) If the weapon is very accurate, make it usable only when the player is not moving (e.g., sniper rifle). If a weapon is rapid-fire, reduce the accuracy, increase the recoil, introduce the probability of the weapon over-heating or jamming.

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I've been creating custom weapons for a wad that I hope to release. Apart from all of the technical issues that you mention, I focus on the visceral feel of the weapons in question. Is the weapon fun to use? Weapon use will come up constantly so when you are play testing your weapon and tweaking it pay attention to how much fun you are having using the it. I believe this is the North Star of weapon creation. Is it fun? Does it look cool? If it is then there are allot of people that will be very happy to play with it. Good luck good sir!

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Thank you for your reply. It's helpful, and I do appreciate it.

I'd also like to know about different technical techniques and tricks that can be used in the design of a weapon. What are some things that I can do to a weapon that can make it feel more fun to use?

Also, love the profile pic Nihlith.

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Good sound effects! So many weapons throughout video game history sound more wimpy than they actually are due to using poor firing and reloading sounds. A famous example right from Doom is the chaingun, it kinda sounds like someone quickly slapping paper when it's firing, even though it does deal decent damage. The use of a bad sound sells the weapon short.

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4 minutes ago, Doomkid said:

Good sound effects! So many weapons throughout video game history sound more wimpy than they actually are due to using poor firing and reloading sounds. A famous example right from Doom is the chaingun, it kinda sounds like someone quickly slapping paper when it's firing, even though it does deal decent damage. The use of a bad sound sells the weapon short.

I always felt like the chaingun would be more satisfying to use if it was a little faster on the rate of fire. Chainguns in particular benefit a lot from smooth animation, like the one in Valiant or even BD. And that fapping noise the vanilla chaingun makes does totally sell it short. I actually refer to the gun as "the fappergun".

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11 hours ago, TheMagicMushroomMan said:

"the fappergun".

Heh.

 

11 hours ago, Doomkid said:

Good sound effects!

Amen. [My favorite weapon sound, likely not shared by a majority of DooM players, is the plasma rifle.]

 

@King S P O O N It goes without saying that smooth animation makes a weapon joyful to brandish.

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