Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Retro Dino

I need ideas for level starts

Recommended Posts

I usually just drop the player in randomly. It works sure, but to me personally the WADS that have some type of door or cave entrance behind you are the ones that give just that much more of an "authentic" feel. I need some inspiration for level starts! Screenshot your level starts and drop them below!

Share this post


Link to post

Having a good opening shot is a great start to a WAD - try to make it interesting! I tend to find this easier to do when the player is facing diagonally (as a lot of my maps are mostly orthogonal).

 

ig6IonO.png

Corridor ahead and door to the right to invite exploration! Floor and ceiling differences! A tempting suit of armour!

 

8UVDFpI.png

Layers of textures! Some ceiling decoration with pipes! Some pickups to head for and two immediately obvious routes to explore. (This one was done in a 20-sector limit so I had to be creative about detailing)

 

LA4kKZR.png

This one's rubbish! It's mine as well but I'm not sure what I was thinking - you get a... door. At least there's a switch right there inviting you to open it and see the level beyond.

Share this post


Link to post

Here are some example level starts from my project.  The last two are only after you open the door or whatever at the very beginning.  The second and third immediately start the player in sight of attacking things.  The first is from an unfinished level lol but I doubt the start will change much.

 

Spoiler

The level before this ends on a helipad, so it seemed logical to start this on one.

 

DOOM0110.png.f11ed2c27e1158b5f5abe3866c4ca7d3.png

 

DOOM0112.png.2ec490d02e088de99e9de397c440ee1c.png

 

In the level before this the player drops into a bottomless pit.  The hole is visible above the player (if you like look around a bit, which I didn't in this shot lol)

DOOM0113.png.b0cc61a4d963427fbb0d18c30e74f935.png

 

DOOM0114.png.a9932931928d84553e3b75a42d8c6358.png

 

Elevator door behind player here

DOOM0115.png.3e444e5992c46d86dc9d1ffcd042ab02.png

 

DOOM0116.png.0127e0ed059a1a403202b2853018af75.png

 

The level before this ends in a forced player death.  So here I start the player in a grave, which you rise out of as soon as this level starts.

DOOM0120.png.05076613d355ec1e43aab0b73f5edc51.png

DOOM0117.png.8fb19b1e625f311c7a69897f7e495d19.png

DOOM0121.png.7eafa49b3f95ceeabe6fc61f053fc203.png

All of these open the player up immediately to multiple options of where to go, what to grab, and also have stuff lurking not too far away that will try and kill them.  A variety of colors too never hurt, at least with some splashes here and there.  @DavidN makes a good point about diagonal starts which, yes, can start the player with a wider and more interesting view of an orthogonal room (although if you start the player in a tunnel or corridor-like spot then probably best to keep straight-on, to draw the eye in down the hallway.  This can be good too for dramatic effect.)

 

EDIT: Since I realized your question is more how did the player get into the map, I've included a few notes about that plus these two shots.  MAP02 and MAP03 will be visible from each other (noting again that MAP02 isn't complete) across a large body of water.

 

DOOM0118.png.0fdd1c388e6133a31818a7e2c4a9414f.png

DOOM0119.png.c94ade8625a097f986a4cd397390e1ab.png

Edited by StupidBunny

Share this post


Link to post

Just whatever you do, never place monsters where they can see and attack the player right away. It's so annoying.

Share this post


Link to post

You can always start with start/end slipgate or teleporter to give map some uniformity like in Plutonia Experiment or if I take modern example - Valiant. From here you could plan how entire start area will look like. 

Share this post


Link to post

Nearby a door, next to a gate or on a teleport or inside a cave usually also work well enough for me

 

GEsY4GL_d.webp?maxwidth=640&shape=thumb&

Share this post


Link to post

Try to give a good first impression, when the initial room looks bland, this will be one of the main causes nobody would like to play your maps, try to give a nice opener, the most basic ones are:
>Starting with a door right in front of you
>Big open grounds for you to see before you want to explore
>Small rooms or corridors with a big gun to grab, teasing you of a big fight coming
>Something that may look complicated to traverse but you have a nice vista of it at the start, so you can start guessing how to proceed (usually running and gunning like a monkey)

I feel confident about most of my openings, here are examples:

image.png.b212ab9590a3a94df64917736d6f77e9.pngimage.png.7267821ecc41888278cede5ddc9f2731.pngimage.png.259953094c3320df33d2982ded4f4a18.pngimage.png.a39a297192d6a0df93c283a3edf05b8d.png
image.png.3745b13ed9dc475ef439f5d141e9b676.pngimage.png.9300ce5e119a0eb84d39e9315ef558a7.png
image.png.c1f1d9c867293d24ce7231229099172e.pngimage.png.c3dc5a5ad10c7ef737aa4b6ab0c2cc34.png

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, sluggard said:

Nearby a door, next to a gate or on a teleport or inside a cave usually also work well enough for me

 

GEsY4GL_d.webp?maxwidth=640&shape=thumb&

this image belong to the cursed image thread!

Its nightmareishly charming!

 

I suppose the face under the legs was unnintended, but if it was the intention, i'm your bitch now.

 

16 minutes ago, DJVCardMaster said:

Try to give a good first impression, when the initial room looks bland, this will be one of the main causes nobody would like to play your maps, try to give a nice opener, the most basic ones are:
>Starting with a door right in front of you
>Big open grounds for you to see before you want to explore
>Small rooms or corridors with a big gun to grab, teasing you of a big fight coming
>Something that may look complicated to traverse but you have a nice vista of it at the start, so you can start guessing how to proceed (usually running and gunning like a monkey)

I feel confident about most of my openings, here are examples:

image.png.b212ab9590a3a94df64917736d6f77e9.pngimage.png.7267821ecc41888278cede5ddc9f2731.pngimage.png.259953094c3320df33d2982ded4f4a18.pngimage.png.a39a297192d6a0df93c283a3edf05b8d.png

I recognize the others, but i don't recognize those.

From what mapsets are them?

Share this post


Link to post
1 minute ago, P41R47 said:

I recognize the others, but i don't recognize those.

From what mapsets are them?


the 3 vanilla ones are from my WIP wad, the last one is a WIP for Parallel Doomensions.
 

Share this post


Link to post

I'm not gonna say how to make in terms of geometry but:

 

Your map starts in the somewhat safe building and there are the following rooms: the teleporter room, where you start and the so-named "Speedrunner assistance room"

 

If you go into the latter room, you'll notice see the screen-switch that says: "If you're speedrunner, press me"

And upon the press the walls are lowered and the bridge towards the level's real exit is being built. Cool

Share this post


Link to post

One idea is to immediately give the player an objective. Here's the start of my latest level (WIP)

 

SbspThE.jpg

 

Dead center, you can see the door labelled "Exit". To the left is a broken bridge, slightly right of center are some crates floating in a pit of nukage, forming a clear path to the other side. To the right is a building with a window looking out over the pit. There are words on the ground which say "OVERFLOW POOL". From all of this, the objective of the level should be pretty clear.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
9 hours ago, Stabbey said:

From all of this, the objective of the level should be pretty clear.

Indeed, this is an excellent way to start a map.

 

[A variation, admittedly a less-interesting one, is to have the exit door near the start but require a key.]

Share this post


Link to post
2 minutes ago, ReX said:

Indeed, this is an excellent way to start a map.

 

[A variation, admittedly a less-interesting one, is to have the exit door near the start but require a key.]

 

It's not visible immediately from the start, but examining the building on the right will show that the entrance needs a yellow keycard to enter. I actually display all the keys in the map before you can get them; a consistent approach of showing the objective ahead of time. 

Share this post


Link to post

I've always run into trouble myself with level starts. Getting that perfect opening shot can and has been a stumbling block for me many times. It helped to think of the start less as a thing that needed to necessarily be built first when this happened. Sometimes you can decide that the start should happen somewhere that wasn't the first place you built, and that's okay! As a matter of fact, it's fun to challenge what you think can and should be done in mapping as much as possible.

Share this post


Link to post
20 hours ago, SiMpLeToNiUm said:

As a matter of fact, it's fun to challenge what you think can and should be done in mapping as much as possible.

More people ought to subscribe to this theory.

Share this post


Link to post
Posted (edited)

I'm just working on a DM map atm but if I have anything to say for the start of a single player level, it would be.. "where am I?" and "what is to come?".

If that helps?

 

Which of course is a little different than a DM level, where  "you know where you're at" and "you know what's about to happen". ;)

 

Single player levels tend to be story telling, at least to me, and everyone "should" want to read it a little first..(even if there's no actual story that's been told.)

I think the beginning of the level should give the player an idea what's going on.. and maybe what has happened.

I mean shouldn't there be a reason "Our Hero" has shown up? aside from the obvious? 

Of course he could have always been oblivious to why he's there to begin with, so there's that :P

 

The level its self, I think should gradually unfold with a pistol start and at least have the rifle after the first few monsters, or just earned the SSG if more are on their way. If higher ranking monster beyond the chain gunner pops out, then the rocket launcher should be handy. 

Health should be scars but readily available when new waves appear. Or at least back in the starting area of the map when it likely wasn't needed. I'm no expert but ammo and health is most likely better off placed during play tests, I would think.

Rocket launcher, plasma and BFG really doesn't seem as the weapons to start a level out with, but I see no reason not to have the RL around during SSG findings. I think large health bonus's/Soulsphere should be around only if there's higher tier monsters which is also when the more powerful weapons should make their way into the players hands.

 

So I guess something like that.. it's been awhile since I've made a single player map though. :P

 

 

Edited by Mr.Rocket

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×