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dobu gabu maru

The DWmegawad Club plays: Doom the Way id Did (& Ultimate DTWID!)

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For the sake of a chainsaw I suppose I could have made it a simpler jump :-)

 

Ammo is tight on purpose. Another homage to E4M1 but also a hint not to waste any on the barons you will eventually telefrag. If you are careful with rockets I think you will fair OK and if not the higher HP monsters are all pretty avoidable.

 

 

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1 hour ago, RHhe82 said:

 

Frustration is real, though. I rebooted the level just to make sure I wasn't having a bad dexterity day back when I played the map last weekend. Results: Tried the jump to the chainsaw ledge something like 30 times (lost count). Succeeded once. Then I tried the run for the medikit secret. Five attempts, three successes. Okay, I'm with you on the second one :-D

 

It happens that my previous post was totally wrong, I was writing about the medikit secret. The chainsaw secret was the one in the starting room! It is a tricky jump, but it's quite likely to trigger a wall-running effect that propels you towards the ledge.

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GZDoom/UV/Continuous/Saves

E4M2: Vile Affections - Rottking

100% kills and 75% secrets

Time: 12:03

Card: Pinky can teleport away when in danger

 

This map is a tad easier than the first. No cybs here, and we still haven't seen a baron yet. Most of the enemies are going to be shotgunners and imps, and the hitscan is the biggest threat, especially since there's little health in this map. Taking corners cautiously is advised here. Design-wise, I didn't think this one was as id-like as the previous. I don't know exactly why, but it just doesn't have that feel to it, despite using the right textures. Maybe cause it's easy? I'm not sure. The only tough part is the very mean door with 2 cacos 1 inch behind it, and an imp cubby that opens behind you at the same time. You have almost nowhere to go, cause you can't backtrack without falling into lava, which I wouldn't be surprised to learn would be an inescapable pit. Chaingun them. The secret exit requires finding the soul sphere secret, which has a switch that you can hear open a door nearby. If you go to the room just south of it that seemed to have no point to it initially, you'll find the gargoyle wall has opened to the secret exit. Nothing too hard to find. The one that was too hard to find was the secret at the northwest part of the map. Hopefully it doesn't house a plasma or anything. Overall, an ok level. Not very id-like imo, but still pretty fun.

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E4M4 – Unclean Spirits by @Marcaek

Doomsday Engine, UV-Fast, Continuous, blind run w/saves

 

If I ignored that only excerpts from the Holy Scriptures were suitable as level names for Episode 4, I would suggest changing Unclean Spirits into Mean Spirits. Marcaek was surely possessed by nasty entities when he conceived this map, destined to subvert all expectations, and turn the breather slot of Ultimate Doom into the most hardcore experience of Ultimate Doom the way id did.

 

The info text file maintained that the level was inspired by Shawn Green’s style, but this was the most brazen-faced deceptive statement I have ever read. Instead, it was the distillation of the most wicked elements of Hell Beneath and Perfect Hatred, with a taste of Plutonia and a good measure of contemporary PWAD evilness. This was what I faced going in blind, on UV-fast, carrying no significant extra ammo from E4M3. I felt not ashamed to save my progress when getting out of hairy situations, especially in a map where health and resources were so scarce that the slightest mistake could compromise the entire play through.

 

The player is given infinite time to assess the situation, to no avail; no matter from which angle he looks at it, the conclusion will be the same. It was an awful place to start a map, surrounded by enemies on all sides, with a lava channel to tread and a crowd of enemies to break through. I do not think I would ever beat it with -fast monsters and on pistol start, but there are better players than me out there. I strafe-jumped on the left killing the snipers there, as well as everybody else on the ledges except the Baron. The Pinkies came running and gathered in the lava below, so I dropped down and ran for the eastern part of the map, where more hardship with Imps and Shotgun Guys had to be endured. Lava, lava, lava everywhere, and only two shielding suits in the whole map. Outright crazy.

Spoiler

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I went up the stairs into the area surrounding the start, killing Sergeants to get just enough shells to carry on. Not much health in sight, I noticed a round arena with the rocket launcher that reminded me of a place from Plutonia, so I kept well away of it and tried to get the chaingun instead. This attempt released many Imps and four Barons of Hell, which I had no ammo to deal with. I jumped into the rocket launcher arena, only to discover it was a devious trap. Four closets opened at once, with Pinkies in the forefront to promote face rocketing, followed by Cacodemons, Lost Souls, Imps and Sergeants all around. It was a maddeningly difficult segment on UV -fast, even if you reload and try it again with the benefit of foreknowledge. Oh, one medikit! Nobody should say Marcaek had no mercy!

Spoiler

1893040938_UDtwIdE4M4_02.jpg.8ee6c96a5ad6256c633072888944deb1.jpg

I returned to kill the Barons and continue my journey westwards, where I found the exit, the Computer Area Map, and two teleporters. One sent me on the plasma gun pillar, which was mine after destroying a Spectrecacoswarm with circle-strafing. The generous supply of cells carried me to the BSK and to the exit, which I entered after 20 minutes of sheer suffering. 75% kills, 25% secrets, and a big chunk of map still unexplored. I took a deep breath and decided to try the last section, which hosted an untimely Spiderdemon, many more hit points to vanquish, widespread damaging floors without a single Radiation Suit, and thankfully some power-ups that made that extra mile worth going. In all honesty, I cheated with IDBEHOLDR to take the Soul Sphere, as my health was too low to survive the long and winding blood tunnels.

Spoiler

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An ultra-hard map that did not compare to anything else in this megaWAD, Unclean Spirits was designed with contemporary habits in mind. In my opinion, it missed the target of Ultimate Doom the way id did. Visuals were suitable for the scope, but they felt extremely monotone with GSTVINE everywhere, wood, metal and not much else to see. The landscape was so uniform that I did not notice the entrance to the Berserk pack area. The map had hazardous soils everywhere, too many enemies, overwhelming ambushes, and stingy resources that must be gained fighting to the last breath. Maybe some people out there are up for this, but the ramped-up challenge was not to my liking, regardless of the Ultra-Violence setting and the -fast parameter, which did not impair my experience with this megaWAD as they did here.

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1 hour ago, Book Lord said:

 

It happens that my previous post was totally wrong, I was writing about the medikit secret. The chainsaw secret was the one in the starting room! It is a tricky jump, but it's quite likely to trigger a wall-running effect that propels you towards the ledge.

Yeah, I wasted far too much time with that one....

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Catching up with E4.

 

E4M1: Into The Grave by Walker Wright (Pavera)

 

Ultimate Doom the Way id Did starts with a short, punchy and very linear map. Get the initial resources, fight cacos, imps and shotgunners, get the blue key and surpass the final obstacle, with only a small detour to the blue key (the pit there seems to be unescapable, in contrast to the big one at the start). Damaging floors limit the movement of the player, and teleport ambushes make sure you have to stay on your toes, above all in the first part. At least you get the green armor at the start, which limits the danger from shotgunners. The second part adds some radsuit management as well, but ammo is plentyful. A cyberdemon guards the exit, skipping it is dangerous due to limited space. For maxers, there is a rocket depot but no plasma. Overall enjoyable.

 

8/10

 

E4M2: Vile Affections by Matt Cibulas (RottKing)

 

Another short offering, this time sharing some traits with the original E4M1, particularly health and in a lesser extent ammo starvation, and the greyish-simple visuals. While the start is hectic, the map is overall much milder than McGee's original, featuring mostly imps and many shotgunners (no barons), and it provides a (well-hidden) secret mid-way through the level which will probably end most of your problems (I didn't find it until the end, so I continued starving, but I liked the secret placement). A devilish ambush occurs near the exit, when you're surrounded by imps and cacodemons in a very small space, although the pit where you fall when you fail to solve the problem fast is escapable. The secret exit is also well hidden. Good map, but still not an outstanding effort.

 

7/10

 

E4M9: Terror by Mike Alfredson (Use3D)

 

To be honest, I only felt a little bit of "terror" here at the (pistol) start due to many shotgunners, and on my only death at the slow crusher. The rest of the map is much easier than E4M1 and E4M2 or even most of E3. The layout is obviously inspired from "Fear" and of the style of the two Tim Willits maps in Ultimate Doom, but unfortunately the map uses the "layered" design so typical for this author, which I liked very much, only in a very basic way; the rest is pretty boxy standard Doom. Maybe this was intended to be a breather in the style of McGee's E4M4? Really didn't feel this one. Second "only get once" secret here in the wad, I missed it - I think it is not well made because very likely you won't have seen the lift's misalignment before you drop down lowering it, it is not in your line of sight, and thus running exactly to it is mainly matter of luck (but OK, the original IWADs contain also such secrets, so this hasn't influenced my opinion about this map that much).

 

3/10

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+++ Doom the Way Id Did: the Lost Episodes

+++ Endless Torture

 

i'll save one vote to support something just in case...

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Seconding @NiGHTS108 (it's on the previous page) for

 

+++Community Chest 1

 

(Previously voted on last page myself as well but it was way earlier compared to other votes on the thread. So moving it to here)

 

E4M4 is too hard for even an E4 id map, I liked the challenge a lot though anyways! Like a smaller more to the point NEIS almost.

 

I'm glad many of these UDTWID mappers got in D2TWID, they got some goodies for both. I believe Gifty is the only mapper to appear only in UDTWID and not elsewhere. Xaser and Alfonzo appear in all three, Xaser even appears in NEIS as well! essel appears in original DTWID and D2TWID.

Edited by FrancisT218

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E4M4: Unclean Spirits. DSDA v0.24, UV-PS. 100% kills and secrets. Comp. time 24:47. Never gonna be demo time.

 

@Book Lord warned us about the more modern approach to difficulty and design on monday. That's when I almost came here and almost replied that E4 hasn't been that hard, been pistol starting and even had a couple of saveless demos, it's not that bad, come on. But I thought I'd just play one more map to back up my sentiments. I played this map.

 

So. Umm... Wow, talk about a difficulty spike. Unclean Spirits was magnitudes harder than anything we've faced this month in the club. There are endless streams of barons closing in on you here, constant hitcans chipping away your health, damaging lava. Gazillion imps, clouds of tomatoes engulfing you. And I loved it. Even if I had to think of switching down to HMP for the first time this, I thoroughly enjoyed the hostility of this one. I don't know what's different to some tight spots we've seen before. Frankly, I'd hear baron yells and think you'd already have shot them to extinction but no.

 

Maybe it's just because the map feels so modern, even when it uses stock Thy Flesh Consumed textures, lava, wood, green marble. It's not Ultimate Doom the way iD did, it's more like "Thy Flesh Consumed II" made by this community sometime in 2010s from what I can tell.

 

If I had to be critical, I think I was about to suffer from ammo starvation which I generally don't like. Secrets helped there, but I don't know if I could have done it without them. Also, it's hard to say about the beginning: it is hot as hell, especially on pistol start, and I'm not sure how I feel about those. It got me pumped, that's for sure. But if I were to replay the map, I wouldn't know any better the second time around as to how to manage the start. I feel like I got it through by sheer luck, even with all the dying.

 

One area felt like an afterthought, the small room with berserk pack and imps and a baron. But that's only a very minor grief, I'm just glad there was a berserk pack.

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Oh, I guess I might vote for something. I'm still in a position that most of the mapsets I'd love to play are already covered by the club, or are less than 32 maps :(

 

+++ DBP37: AUGER;ZENITH

+++ Arceon

+++ Cydonia

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E4M4: Unclean Spirits
DOOM Retro, UV, Continuous w/saves, played on a PowerA Enhanced Wireless Controller for the Switch (DOOM Eternal Edition)
 

I remember this one being a lot harder. The intro would kick my ass constantly. It's still a pretty rough intro, but I guess I've learned how to maneuver over the years. This ended up being a bit easier than I remember. 

We went from a couple of easy levels to something more in line with E4. Lots of ambushes, lots of meat shields, a Spider Mastermind, the list goes on. I spent quite a bit of time on this map just searching for more supplies. There was a courtyard with rockets that led to a nasty ambush of spectres, lost souls, and cacos. I was a bit annoyed that half of the map was made of lava, but at least there were enough radiation suits to get by. 
Man, I'm trying to find something to talk about but I've summed it all up. It's hard and it's on point with the level philosophies of E4. Maybe I should stop watching Sasaki and Miyano after playing DOOM. Or maybe I'm just losing focus on what this whole club is about.

Also, I'll just let the club decide the next WAD. Most of the WADs I'd want to chat about have already been covered, so I'd be down to play anything really.

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E4M4: Unclean Spirits

Now this is more like what I was expecting from a Thy Flesh Consumed replacement. The start is a similar struggle to the original E4M2. A large open area filled with monsters, lava, and no safe place to hide. There are constant traps throughout the level as well that never leave you with a moments rest. I very nearly missed a shotgunner at the end of the level, but thankfully I could hear the bastard breathing and tracked him down for 100% all across the board.

e4m4.zip

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E4M4 - Unclean Spirits by Marcaek:

This was the map I was dreading when starting off this wad, and while it's for different reasons than before, I really do not like this map. I don't think it does well at emulating Shawn Green's style because I actually have fun with Green's maps and I don't think it does well at being a Thy Flesh Consumed map because it's so much longer and more monster dense than anything there. 215 monsters (on dsda-doom at least, so not counting any lost souls) is wayyyyy too much - there are 2 maps in Thy Flesh Consumed that have more than 100 monsters, one of them having 106, so why does this map have over double that. I understand that Shawn Green's TFC maps tend to be more monster dense than the others but this works against the whole "the way id did" thing because it's obviously trying to be different to that.

 

The start of the map is well designed but not fun in the slightest, damaging floor combined with almost no cover and hitscanners everywhere, and only the shotgun to deal with them is something that started the map off on a terrible note. I'm kept with berserk being my best weapon for far too long, I was 140 of 220 monsters in before getting the plasma gun, so I guess I managed to choose the "not fun" route through the map. The spiderdemon area seems completely pointless, it's a decent idea for an area, but as far as I can tell it's not required for progression and adds another 5 minutes onto this map's runtime - I'd have preferred if the teleporter that took you there, just took you back to the starting platform instead.

 

I did like the rocket launcher area, it's the most fun part of the map, it reminded me of the rocket launcher ambush in E4M3 - sort of wish I hadn't found this area after the exit switch but that goes back to me choosing the "not fun" route I suppose. A large difficulty spike makes sense for Episode 4 (and I generally enjoy challenging maps), but I find the way the difficulty is implemented here incredibly annoying to play. Overall, I can't deny that this is a well constructed map, but it's the least fun I've had playing Doom the Way Id did.

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E4M4 - Unclean Spirits:

I like to drink my spirits clean, but I'll give it a try. 

Lava. Everywhere, lava. First order of business : clear all visible enemies. Second point in the agenda : grab the suit and JUMP! Clear enemies, clear enemies, holy f5ck I died! Didn't even notice my health was that low. Retry!

 Second go, I fall into the lava... And die.

 Third! Finally managed to clear all visible enemies without taking too much damage, so I saved. Then I went for a more.. Plasmatic solution. And cleared the 2 barons. Near ammoless I go down and into the side, up some stairs into a cage-like lava maze, and then I die when I trigger a baron ambush. Next try ends earlier. 

 Fifth try, using the plasma solution, all going good, now save before I trigger the barons, and a couple of well placed BFG shots I cleared the trap! And then a teleport to a small space with a baron... Whomever did this level forgot to implement difficulty levels, right?

 Six. Managed to get out of the baron's space with a bit of chaingun stunning, run back and rocket him from afar. Now, back to the stairs, grab the rad suit to explore the lava a bit (and hopefully find ammo). Found the berserker, stopped for lunch, wen't back to the teleporter but found another one and an attack by a lost soul revealed the location of the CAM. Teleport, plasma, and now.. Either the obvious rocket trap or this other teleport.. Save, try 1 : teleport. BFG on the SMM! BFG on the barons! Ups, no more plasma. I end the last standing baron with the shotgun and I'm out of ammo again. Up some stairs, kill some shotgunners, lost souls and there's no path that isn't trough lava.. So other side and into the building. Damaging blood! And lost souls. Have I mentioned I hate lost souls? Health, uff. Stairs, ambush closet, prison cells, switch. Oh yey, a caco and me almost out of ammo. Success. Now.. Teleport? But there's a secret here.. Ah ah! The map helped. Slightly better armed I jump into the 'port. After saving. Starting platform again. A run across the lava, and time for the completly obvious RL trap.

First try : ups. Insta dead to specters + RL.

Second try : ran inside, cleared most of everything but pressed the switch way too soon. 

Third try, aka 9th live, cleared the wave. Save, switch. Clear! Now.. Top floor. Clear. Now.. Teleport 1 or teleport 2? Hum... The one with the rad suit before the corridor. Ah! as expected it leads to the chainsaw ledge. And the secret inside. Now, back to teleport 1, and it's the SMM arena. Oh look this pillars come down! Since I'm here... Oh! There's a greensphere up there I can reach through the lava. I'll go. Now invencible I follow the blood up to a bluesphere! From there, across the blood building, stop for another secret, and back to the start. Another lava run, and now finally to go and grab the BK, and then, EXIT!

 

K/I/S : 100% , 100% , 100%

time : 24:25 / 1:36:31

deaths : 8 / 14

 

This was, by far, the hardest level so far. I died more in it than in the entire 3 episodes and 3 maps before.

 

As for votes.. I second DBP37 and vote for D2ISO again.

 

+++ DBP37: AUGER;ZENITH

+++ Doom 2 In Spain Only

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E4M4 - Unclean Spirits.

 

It's been said that this doesn't feel too much like a Shawn Green map - but I don't think that's entirely true. It does mostly have the structure of something he might have done, although it's certainly much more ambitious than something I could see him doing, not to mention much more difficult. It is a little ugly, but the honestly, the marble-vined walls and prolific rooms of wood do their job. It actually somewhat reminds me structurally-wise of the first map of Aeturnum (skillsaw's first set after returning to mapping). Than there's that Spider Mastermind in the volcanic-rock cum fortress region which seems a little pointless.

 

My memory of this map isn't bad, but I'd forgot that you're advised to run down one of the sides at the beginning, lest the crossfire from sergeants and barons completely cut you to pieces. Every time I tried the middle, health was reduced so drastically that I'd have to pick up the stimpacks on the platform below the blue key and then, some sergeant or another I kept forgetting about would put an end to me. To say nothing of the Barons on the higher platforms near the blue key. As near as I can tell, you're supposed to run back the way you came on one of the surrounding routes around where you started (both routes containing a Sergeant pair), before you're presented with a couple of different options. You could head for the chaingun in the Cacodemon cage right behind where you've started, but that will cause a few Imp closets to open up along the lava river, not to mention 4 Barons of Hell. I was technically playing continous but my ammo was low enough when I started that it probably made very little difference. So I decided to then head to the isolated area with wooden pillars and a rocket launcher in the middle. As expected, this triggered an extremely nasty trap with Cacodemons and Spectres emerging from the darkened closets eager to end me. It's very easy to blow yourself up here so just fire a rocket or two at one of the closets than run. Hitscanners and Imps on the surrounding ledges only add to the pressure. What's more, you're probably not going to have enough rockets to take everything out, but thankfully, there is a decent chunk of shotgun ammo scattered throughout this map.

 

After hitting a switch in the darkened room, you can now access the surrounding ledges, perhaps uselessly. See, there's a silver teleporter at one end that'll take you to a large area of red rock with Barons on some pillars and a Spider Mastermind at the far end. I can remember killing everything here before, but honestly, it's just not worth the trouble. You're better off running up the hill to some sort of trench/like structure filled to the brim with sergeants and lost souls which eventually leads to a Megaarmor. Then you can enter the wooden fort where you'll probably want to take your frustrations out at the various monster closets, but honestly, rockets really aren't easy to come by here. At some point, I also came across a secret cubbie you can access by pushing a switch needed to exit the area you're in.

 

Precise progression around this point becomes something of a blur. I think you're teleported to one of the central wooden platforms containing so many ceel boxes you'll go gaga, but wasting cells is just as foolish as elsewhere. I just know the outside exit area has a 'hidden' computer map near a teleporter that takes you back to the Spider Mastermind crates on one side and a long wooden hallway containing a seriously nasty Imp trap you NEED to use a rocket on since the Spectres ahead of you will chew you to pieces otherwise. A teleporter here takes you to a Baron of Hell and the cage sitting above the blue key. The key I might add allows you to exit, though not before being confronted by one more quad of Barons. See what I meant earlier about cells going quickly?

 

All in all, I actually enjoyed this map for the most part with Lee Jackson's "Vitamin B6" actually proving quite a strong complement to this, even though it's perhaps a touch atmospheric for it. Rough beginning and the Mastemind is just a literal "why," but it's fine.

 

Grade: A-

Difficulty: B-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since it's finally the 25th where I live\. Also, surprised that no one has chosen this yet but I'd like to vote for +++Ray Mohawk's Manic Monday and +++Ray Mohawk 2: Ray Wrecks Havoc!.

 

Edited by LadyMistDragon

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E4M4: Unclean Spirits

By Marcaek

 

Kills: 83%

Items: 30%

Secrets: 50%

Time: 8:33

 

Here it is, my favourite Doom I IWAD map at large (This is only the second Doom I megawad I have beaten, the first being Doom I) This map may not be much alike the decaying wood, ancient halls and white hot pebbles of Thy Flesh Consumed, but I'll never criticise a map for being too good, first, what really stands out here to me is the visuals, while still at least partially confining to the rules, this map is an absolute stunner, especially at the start, this vine plagued marble, fortified wood, flaming sky and jailed bars do absolute wonders in colour co-ordination! The difficulty here comes from two things, shotgunners and damaging floor, these are two things I'm not usually a fan of but I believe Unclean Spirits uses them in a way that's stylish, palatable, and never gets annoying, even beyond that there are many violent and delightful setpieces, my favourite of the whole month comes in the first area you teleport to, in the wooden area with 3 pillars, be prepared for a wall of Lost Souls followed by a mob of shotgunners, all while Barons and a Mastermind play the peanut gallery, it's probably the most creative application of Doom I enemies and the shotgun I've ever seen! It feels like Ribbiks made it! This map isn't a one-setpiece-wonder though, the start is blistering, the wall of shotgunners will make you sweat, the rocket launcher fight can be deadly and it's SO much fun, and the ending is also wonderfully hellish, I don't care this is nothing like Ultimate Doom at all, once again, I'll never criticise a map for being too good :)

 

Grade: A

Difficulty: B+

 

 

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I'm a fair bit behind but unfortunately have been busy, only time for the one at this point. May do another later today.

 

E4M2: "Vile Affections" by Rottking

UV with Corruption Cards, no saves

100% kills, 2/4 secrets

 

Card: Add exploding floor traps to the level

 

A wooden hell aesthetic that definitely calls American McGee to mind for me. To further that feeling, this level definitely has a fair bit of health starvation similar to McGee's own E4M1. While the number of pickups itself isn't as sparse as in that case, the monster placements feel a bit more threatening with there being a few shotgunner placements that are very easy to get nicked by. Playing continuous and starting off this one with 60% health furthered the feeling of health squeeze, although it does lift itself toward the end with the level's only medikit and a soulsphere secret that I was lucky enough to find.

 

The combat here, as I mentioned earlier, is marked by some tricky hitscanner placements. You'll want to make hitscanners priority 1 in each room you enter, because you don't have too much room for error. If you can do that you should be fine. Also notable though is a relatively nasty trap near the end that launches a claustrophobic pincer attack with two cacos and two imps, with only 20 damage hellslime to break your fall if you decide to run out. The card here wasn't what I expected, where I thought there'd be a trap here or there that will punish you greatly for stumbling in, in reality it crams in traps by the fistful that by themselves barely do any damage at all. There are so many of them though that the odd bit of damage from them can be tough to avoid. 

 

Decent map overall.

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6 hours ago, LadyMistDragon said:

It's been said that this doesn't feel too much like a Shawn Green map - but I don't think that's entirely true. It does mostly have the structure of something he might have done, although it's certainly much more ambitious than something I could see him doing, not to mention much more difficult. It is a little ugly, but the honestly, the marble-vined walls and prolific rooms of wood do their job. It actually somewhat reminds me structurally-wise of the first map of Aeturnum (skillsaw's first set after returning to mapping). Than there's that Spider Mastermind in the volcanic-rock cum fortress region which seems a little pointless. 

 

You are right in saying that the structure is indeed reminiscent of Shawn Green maps. It has areas in the shape of semicircles and even octagonal sectors, and it has that geographically disconnected area with the Spiderdemon that can be compared to the area with cages in Unto the Cruel, at least for the fact that it is detached. The texturing is just your standard E4 GSTONE/WOOD with yellow sky and lava floor, with a lot of GSTVINE1 that I found a bit monotone. That's just an opinion and no absolute truth. @NiGHTS108 seems to like the choice of textures, for instance.

 

My criticism is not directed at the map quality, which is good as a challenging map, one that nobody should play with -fast monsters on first try. The point is: I like playing IWAD-difficulty map sets with -fast monsters, especially Ultimate Doom WADs, as they really make the game more interesting. When the numbers become overwhelming, the movement is limited, the resources are dwindling, and the use of monsters tends to be ruthless, I gladly turn the setting off and play normal UV, or even HMP (an example: I only finished Alien Vendetta on HMP, as UV was a grind for me). I like when the idea of difficulty is properly conveyed, so that I can choose from the beginning if I can play the WAD with -fast monsters, or not. Usually it is not advisable to play recent material with -fast, but "the way id did" should act as a sort of guarantee for what to expect. This is not true with the 2019 fourth episode, possibly replicating the shock the players might have felt when playing Thy Flesh Consumed back in 1995.

 

Unclean Spirits wants to be everything at the same time: a challenge for contemporary Doomers, a mockery of McGee unremarkable Unruly Evil, a Shawn Green-inspired map, an ammo and health stingy map as Hell Beneath, a map with a hot start and widespread use of lava like Perfect Hatred, a map with dangerous traps similar to Plutonia, with monster counts and combat puzzle arrangements that are typical of today's PWADs. All in the middle of a WAD called Ultimate Doom the Way id did. I think it's a bit off-topic, if compared to what the other authors have done for this project.

Edited by Book Lord

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E4M1: Into The Grave
Not a bad opener! I actually enjoyed this way more than the original E4M1! Granted, this map still has its little surprises but the original E4M1 had almost no health present on UV skill and on top of that, there was a secret that rewarded you with FOUR barons of hell! Not to mention the monsters teleporting all over place and some positioned behind walls in which they can shoot you, while you can't even see them (at the red skull key area).
In this UDTWID case, there are no barons of hell present at all (thankfully)! Instead, there are a couple cacodemons on top of usual zombies, imps and demons. Some of which teleport at times behind or in front of you. But the real surprise is the Cyberdemon that awaits you behind the exit door! Now I believe he is only present on higher skill levels (maybe HMP as well?) and he can be tricky to take out. I really recommend to kill him as fast as you can with the 50 rockets you are given while dodging his rockets in the lava and do it quickly before your radiation suit expires! If you still haven't killed him with the 50 rockets, switch to the shotgun and finish him off!
Interestingly, on my continuous playthrough from a year ago (in Chocolate Doom), the Cyber killed me once, probably because I failed to dodge a rocket. But this time I had no problem defeating him on first attempt. I guess that's my revenge from the E2M8 death I got a week ago (which never happened in past playthroughs of DTWID). :P
There are two secrets to find, one is an invisibility at beginning of map in lava (also a bunch of health bonuses) that you can grab with help of radiation suit, the other is a secret berserk pack that can be found near the end, just jump through the fake wall to find a teleporter, then go grab it when you teleport.
I made sure to grab everything before exiting. I didn't grab the extra two rocket boxes in lava (near exit) as that would be pointless and I'm happy with how things turned out overall!
A challenging opener that nicely sets up the tone of the episode!

 

E4M2: Vile Affections
Once again, this is much easier than the original E4M2. Granted, it's not meant to resemble original E4M2 and it looks like one of the easier E4 maps from the original, I'd say it's comparable to original UD E4M4, although this one is slightly bigger.
If you know where the secrets are (the green armor at beginning and soulsphere near end), you shouldn't have problems with this one. There is also the secret exit to find, although I will not spoil how to access it this time. I will say the secret switch is connected to the Soulsphere secret. I also managed to do this time in first try, on the continuous run, I remember dying once by falling into the lava when retreating from that nasty cacodemon trap. This time my plan worked, even if I shoot the rocket a bit too close to the caco (but thankfully not too close!).
Oh yeah and this map is shown in the intro demo. I find interesting the maps shown in demos were: E1M4, E2M4, E3M2 and E4M2. In the original ULTIMATE DOOM, the demos were following: E1M5, E2M2, E3M5, E4M2. I don't know if this slight coincidence with demo patterns was on purpose but I think it's a nice touch overall. I always pay attention to details like these.
I think the map was fun, though there isn't much else to say about it. I liked it much better than the original E4M2, that's for sure.

 

E4M9: Terror
Another map that seems a little bit better than its counterpart from the original ULTIMATE DOOM, in this case I would say both the original E4M9 and this one are pretty good. There isn't much to talk besides a couple parts were challenging (especially the beginning! I recommend saving the berserk until your health gets 50% or less). There is however one fatal flaw that made me replay the map. It's not the crusher if you are wondering, it's something worse and related to the author's previous DTWID E2M5 entry. You will see what I mean shortly...
There are a few secrets to be found, one contains the BFG (including health/armor bonuses) that should greatly help you later in the map. Another contains the backpack (located close to those lifts, where you will find the BLUE ARMOR and other goodies in the water). And then there's the third secret that is the flawed part. You see, I didn't grab it in time the first time around because I didn't realize from watching that YouTube video, that it was a ONE TIME ONLY SECRET! That elevator (inside the pillar containing the soulsphere) lowers only once and if you miss your chance to hop into it, then goodbye Soulsphere Secret!
It wasn't until I consulted the Doomwiki.org and THEN when I realized, I first finished the map normally and immediately replayed it after, remembering to get that soulsphere secret. So when you reach that last area, make sure when you get into that platform containing invisibility, you run as fast to that pillar! If you play continuously, hope you have an early save. If pistol start, then restart the map (assuming you did without saves).
I don't know why did the author think this was a good idea. As a completionist, I absolutely HATE one time only secrets! Granted, the average person won't bother with getting all the secrets (much less all items) but in this case, not only it is a very useful secret but also one time only! But the question is why? To add replayability to the map? I know even the original DOOM 2 had that bullshit secret in MAP27: MONSTER CONDO (as well as two inaccessible secrets by normal means, one in same MAP27, other in MAP15, they can be actually both gotten by using two different glitches in original DOOM2.EXE without using any cheats) which had that 30-second timelimit to grab it as soon as you start the map. I am glad that mappers nowadays have learned the lesson to not have these kind of secrets. I can understand there have to be some hard to reach secrets but I don't know, I find one time secrets incredibly lame. As they are very easy to miss and if you do that mistake, then there is no way to recover that secret. Unless you have an earlier save.
Oh and as mentioned earlier, there is a crusher you have to get through, just be careful with it and you should be fine!
On the bright side, replaying the map gave me a much faster time. 11:24 instead of 20+ minutes, meaning the time has been cut in roughly half.
Despite that one time only secret that can be a nuisance to completionists if they miss the chance to get it, the rest of the map was excellent. Highly recommended to play!

 

E4M3: Earth, Blood and Fire
There were a couple of annoying bits at this map. First, you have to work for that shotgun early on, to be able to kill the two spectres, few imps and the shotgun guy that are present in the first few rooms.
Second, the green armor isn't given immediately, you have to work for it.
Third, the chainsaw secret is annoying and hard to reach. You have to strafe run to get it, which took me at least 2-3 minutes of multiple attempts until I finally got it. I was almost considering to restart the demo recording, though thankfully I managed to grab it before timer hit 5 minutes, so I went with what I had. The chainsaw itself, while nice, isn't that worth the effort to reach it. Would have preferred a bigger reward, maybe a BFG. :P
OK I'm kidding, I think maybe chaingun/plasma or a soulsphere or something else would have been much more rewarding for the effort put into reaching this secret.
The rest of the map has you traversing through lava (annoyingly, the lava is the 20 dmg type that can harm you even with radiation suit) and the scarce ammo at beginning, until you get secrets and more ammo later on. I missed the chaingun early on and eventually I got it near end when killing the last few monsters, so I had to use the pistol a bit earlier to conserve those few shells.
There are a couple barons of hell present, some of which need to be killed normally, the others in the open space (in corners) require you to telefrag them, as they are stationary and you can probably tell from earlier, so just avoid their shots, which is easier said than done in that cramped space. At least one of cacos got infight with a baron, so there was something funny to watch.
The other secrets are also timed, one contains FOUR medkits (very much needed!) and another contains the Plasma rifle (absolutely needed). I will not spoil how to reach them, I can however give a hint with those torches in the middle of one particular room and a switch you must press and then quickly teleport before the door closes in next room.
While the map was annoying at times, I can't be too harsh on it and I'm happy with how the recording turned out, despite some mistakes I did, it was done in first try, so I will leave it like that, even if some parts could be improved. I just can't be bothered with getting that dumb chainsaw secret again. :P

 

E4M4: Unclean Spirits
And now for the first truly painful map! This is probably influenced by the ULTIMATE DOOM E4M2 and E4M6 combined. Lots of lava to traverse, lots of monsters to kill, just pure chaos! You must follow a particular path in order to succeed. In general I recommend just rushing to that green armor in center of map and killing a few monsters in your way. After that, well I have absolutely no idea how to explain all that because the map is quite complicated, filled with traps, while radiation suits are very limited. It's impossible to write a walkthrough for this. My demo should show how to complete this map in the easiest way (after watching two different YouTube videos). I am very happy I got this map in first try, as a year ago I got killed 4-5 times on the continuous playthrough. Oh yeah and there's a Spider Mastermind too, waiting for you after using the central teleporter.
Be sure, once you teleport to spider mastermind area, to find the hidden Soulsphere and Blue Armor, they are in non-marked secret areas. They will massively help!
The rest of the map requires you to traverse lava and you have to conserve the few radiation suits you are given. It can go wrong at any times, so if you are trying to complete this map from a pistol start without saving, I just recommend to watch my demo. The demo explains much better than I do right now. :P
Overall, it was an ok map, annoying at times but once you finish this one without saving, it feels very satisfying to beat it! I found it easier than the original E4M2 at least.


E4M5: Doctrines of Devils
While some parts I could have handled better (such as the part with red skull key), I think this was a fine map overall and I'm happy with how the demo turned out in the end. You are given a soulsphere right at start (which you may or may not want to grab it right now) and if you manage to find the blue armor immediately, that should be enough to survive for the rest map. I recommend to be cautious at beginning due to low ammo to take down the various monsters. If you grab the stuff in the middle, the platform sinks into toxic blood, so you have to endure the damage every time you walk here.
The rest of the map is fine, although there's two harder parts that you can decide to use the invulnerability secret for. First is that area that contains the BFG. I used the invulnerability secret here because I thought this room is harder overall, which contains a mix of monsters (barons, cacodemons, etc). The BFG and rocket launcher will be a great use combined with invulnerability. The other dangerous room is right at end with barons and spectres unleashed both behind and in front of you, while lights turn off. I recommend turning around and firing rockets behind at those spectres from behind, then look ahead and kill those teleporting barons. Because I watched YouTube videos in advance to remember the monster placement, I knew exactly when and where to fire rockets. Otherwise this could have been bad and potentially kill my run. Then once you are done, kill the enemy that guards the exit (won't spoil what it is exactly, to not ruin the surprise).
I don't have much else to say about the map...

Spoiler

 

E4M6: Molten Gods
This map took me 3 attempts to complete this time around. And not because of the Cyberdemon, if you were wondering. Instead, I died twice in the secret room containing the BFG. Both times I was screwed by the Baron of Hell that spawned close to me, first time I guess I started firing and he teleported and blocked my way, then by the time I got out, I was nearly dead and got finished by an imp. The second time something weird happened and the monsters spawned EARLIER for whatever reason (my only guess is killing those shotgun guys AFTER I opened the secret, alerted those monsters down there), meaning I got infinite tall'd until I somehow got to drop down, managed to escape and get finished off by shotgun guy/imp.
That was quite a bad luck right here and I have a feeling if that shit didn't happen earlier, I could have completed the map in first try. At least I'm happy with how the third try ended overall.
Now for the map, it was fine, although the ammo is tight in the beginning and you aren't given the Green Armor immediately, you must explore the lava caves to get it and other goodies/secrets. There is a secret soulsphere that will greatly help, though I recommend grabbing it a bit later, when you can combine it with 100 health and armor instead of grabbing it early and burn through it. The secrets will greatly help as usual, though be careful with how you grab the radiation suits as they are very limited! And the cyberdemon (that shows up when yellow skull key is collected) is better killed with the plasma from a safe place, much later. Once you've done that, the last part of the map is easy to deal with, so you can then exit confidently.
The map overall isn't very difficult if you plan your routes in advance, though considering anything can go bad at any moment to ruin your day, you will just have to keep trying until you succeed! :P


E4M7: Hand of the Heathen
While the map wasn't too bad overall, I feel like the lack of armor made it much harder than it should have been. At least on the UV skill, because according to Doomwiki, there is armor present on easier skills (one on HMP, two on easiest skills). I feel like a green armor pickup should have been present on UV skill as well. Yes, I know the original E4M6 didn't have any armor present on UV skill either (I didn't actually pistol start the original episodes before, I will do that another time). But still, this map should have included one anyway, maybe inside a secret area. At least there are a few armor bonuses and a soulsphere secret but that's pretty much it.
You must rely on infighting at times, like the part in lava, you get ambushed by two barons and three cacos. You can make them infight but during this time your radiation suit might expire, so you need to be extremely careful how you do this map overall! It is certainly a difficult map and I was very lucky to do it on the first try, obviously with help from the YouTube videos to plan my routes in advance. I would also recommend to grab the BFG secret to kill the cyberdemon and the last enemies ambush. There is also an invulnerability that greatly helped but I couldn't save for the later parts, I ended up grabbing while the Cyber was busy infighting with lost souls as I thought it's risky to get through all that without invulnerability (as I was thinking the cyber would fire a rocket at me and end my run), plus I needed to grab the yellow skull key (which was guarded by the cyber), drop down in lava and make it through that to collect the BFG secret and use it to finish off the Cyber.
I don't know how I got lucky at times (at one point I had 25% health left and grabbed the soulsphere secret, because I didn't see any radiation suits left in that area and had to burn through most my health) but in the end, I finished the map in 15:15, with 93% health left I think. I feel very satisfied with my run overall. :)
So yeah, the map wasn't too bad but I just wish there was armor present in the map. It would have made a huge difference.


E4M8: An End To Darkness
Yeah, not doing this one without saving. Sorry! The map is very long and contains FOUR Cyberdemons and also two Spiders (though the spiders are the least of your worries). Not to mention the huge monster count. Considering ANYTHING can go wrong at any moment, I rather not waste my time replaying parts of the map. I know this will seem disappointing but I had no other choice.
I still ended up recording a demo (and saved at times, a bit more often saving done in later parts of the map and using few more slots) and I eventually died in the final battle because I was desperately trying to find that invulnerability sphere and got surrounded and killed. This at least makes me glad I saved during demo recording and that save could get loaded after quitting game and starting it up normally.


I'm at least very happy with how things ended up, I originally expected to be able to complete only half or less of E4 (pistol start without saving), instead things went far better, with only very few failures overall. Disappointed that didn't finish E4M8 in one go, though very happy I managed to get this far without dying and that alone is a big accomplishment to me. Far beyond my expectations as a recent Pistol Starter, considering I almost never did pistol starts before, except in rare cases. Although I have played many single level wads and was able to do fine in many cases. It's not like it's an unknown concept to me, it's just that I generally preferred my continuous runs and gather resources from previous maps, unless the mapper did death exits from time to time.


I don't want to spoil much of what happens later in demo, as there is a lot to talk about the ending. I don't want to ruin the surprises, considering most people are halfway through the episode. The boss battles are definitely interesting and tough. I also ended up wasting a lot of time at end trying to find the last secret (an invisibility sphere) before the final battle and I barely remembered the location, before I almost gave up.
Aside from the death in the demo, I also got killed by those final cyberdemons about 4 more times (after loading my last saved game), one of which was a gib death (as one time I got splattered with 14% health left). I think the amount of deaths on this map are on par with the continuous run from a year ago where I also suffered 4-5 deaths. It's not extremely difficult but I feel like some parts are luck based because you are most likely going to die at least once, even when you know what to expect. It is at least actually hard and not like the original E4M8 that was really easy, especially with how many supplies you were given at times.


I had to post earlier about the last few maps, since I will be away for the rest of the weekend, so I apologize if I rushed to post my overall thoughts. I will put the two E4M8 screenshots in spoiler and attach my successful runs of E4 (except E4M8) and also the failed runs of E4M6 & E4M8. Hopefully the people who watched my demos, will enjoy these as well!


Overall, most of the map was fun, even if some parts were really annoying (such as that teleporting cyber that somehow didn't cause me trouble this time around) and had to watch those YouTube videos in advance to remember what the hell I was supposed to do (and to reach those particular secrets), even then I had to be cautious and rely on luck and advance slowly at times.

 

E4 Times:
E4M1: 7:31
E4M2: 9:30
E4M9: 11:24
E4M3: 12:52
E4M4: 24:29
E4M5: 14:32
E4M6: 10:52
E4M7: 15:15
E4M8: 49:32 (With Saves!)

 

DTWID Pistol Start Deaths: 1 (E2M8)
UDTWID Pistol Start Deaths: 7 (E4M6 and E4M8)
Total Deaths: 8

 

By comparison, my last Chocolate Doom continuous playthroughs deaths from before (copied from a text document I still had saved somewhere):

DTWID Continuous Playthrough Deaths: 0
UDTWID Continuous Playthrough Deaths: 11 (E4M1, E4M2, E4M4, E4M8)

Total Deaths: 11

 

Despite that surprising death in E2M8 (and those few "failures" in other maps), I am very happy how DTWID/UDTWID pistol start runs turned out! This proves I have mastered (to some extent) the art of Pistol Starting! I am glad that I am now a bit more familiar with pistol starts without saves. However, I will not always stick with that rule. I am still a continuous player and on a blind playthrough (especially a new release), I highly recommend continuous playing. If it's a megawad I already finished before and I'm familiar with it (like was the case with DTWID & UDTWID), an extra challenge is always welcomed.

 

To give my overall thoughts, UDTWID E4 was much better than the original ULTIMATE DOOM E4. I never liked how inconsistent was the original episode, especially Romero's maps because of how hard they were. To this day, I still can't beat E4M2 without dying at least 10 or so times before completing it (with help of saves of course), while E4M6 is a bit more bearable if you plan your routes in advance but screw that lack of armor on higher skills!


Not to mention the major flaws of E4M1, E4M3 and E4M7. In E4M1's case the lack of health and that bullshit secret that rewards you with 4-5 barons in your face, while E4M3 & E4M7 have inaccessible secrets, meaning I have to always end these levels with 90% secrets, respectively 50% secrets. I don't like to IDCLIP into those inaccessible secrets, so I go with the maximum possible without cheating. I just found it rushed and inconsistent with difficulty all over the place and feels like a fan made episode.


In case of UDTWID's take of Thy Flesh Consumed, it succeeds at capturing the E4 feeling and making the maps feel actually challenging without being unfair (mostly). The maps play excellent (mostly) even on pistol starts, so you are encouraged to pistol start the maps. I don't know if the original Ultimate Doom and Doom 2 maps were designed from pistol starts as I never attempted them before but I might do that one day. I get the impression that most are pistol start compatible anyway.
And yeah, I like that you can actually get 100% everything in case of every DTWID/UDTWID map! No more inaccessible secrets!


Leaving aside some minor annoyances, bugs, glitches and a few odd E2/E3 (maybe E4 as well?) maps, Doom The Way Id Did feels like an Alternate Universe Doom. What if it was released back in the 90s as an expansion pack to the original DOOM games or an entire separate classic Doom game!

In short, I highly enjoyed revisiting DTWID/UDTWID (despite a few maps not impressing me very much) and they are still among my favorite wads of all time. I am shocked that UDTWID didn't win any cacowards or even a mention.


I also hope one day that DTWID/UDTWID becomes an official addon for the Doom Unity ports. If there's any legal problems involved at the moment, then I hope everything gets sorted out!
I don't have much else to say. I don't want to repeat myself from what I said previously and I feel sad I had to end the month slightly earlier, as I will be away for the rest of the weekend.

I will also attach two screenshots from the end of E4M8, to make up for my failed demo. They will be put in SPOILER right here, so don't click if you haven't reached/finished that map yet!

 

Spoiler

UDTWID_E4M8_1.png.6eebdeaf93b35c0f43374b2131162df5.png

UDTWID_E4M8_2.png.a899009646718a3dd7b350ce49af920c.png

 

Votes for the next month:

+++ Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders (Episodes 4-6 only, yes there is an E6 in Heretic SOTSR)
+++ Hexen: Beyond Heretic

 

And the third choice is to be decided between either of the following 3 random episodes Ultimate Doom episodes from 2016 that weren't played before:

 

+++ Absolutely Killed
+++ Alpha Accident: Terra Nova
+++ No Sleep For The Dead

 

I had mostly Heretic and Hexen in mind (and my third option was going to be Hexen: Deathkings of the Dark Citadel), but seeing as those 3 UD episodes weren't played before and they are all on my to play list, I thought that these would be a good candidate. I feel like this adds a bit more variety. The only reason why I didn't vote for other Ultimate Doom megawads is that I thought it wouldn't make much sense to play through another UD megawad so soon.


Community Chest would have been great if chosen a few months earlier, I already finished the first two not too long ago. I don't feel like playing through them again, if they get chosen, I might just show up at the end of the month to give overall thoughts about the wad and that's it. Other wads suggested, I'm not too familiar with and that's why I didn't vote for them. I thought that nominating some Heretic/Hexen from time to time wouldn't hurt to add a bit more variety, though maybe in their place some custom Heretic/Hexen episodes could get suggested and mixed with other stuff. I'm not too familiar with recent Heretic/Hexen wads, though. And for my third vote, like I said, I'm not too decided at the moment, so feel free to consider one of those UD episodes in the place of the third vote, whatever gets more votes. OR if both Heretic and Hexen won't win, then I guess just consider those 3 Ultimate Doom episodes as my actual votes and forget Heretic & Hexen altogether. :P

 

Anyway, regardless of what gets chosen, I hope to join the next month as well. :)

UDTWID_Demos_E4.zip

UDTWID_Failed_Demos_E4.zip

 

EDIT: I have added the maps E4M6, E4M7 and E4M8 into spoiler, which should be opened only on 28th! Sorry for posting earlier! I will be away in this weekend.

 

Have a nice weekend everyone!

Edited by FistMarine

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Votes for the next month:

+++ Hexen: Beyond Heretic

+++ Community Chest

+++ Number One Kill & Number One Kill Extra & Number One Kill the Next Generation

 

Hexen feels like a lost cause, but @dobu gabu maru wrote on many old threads that if you keep nominating a megaWAD, it usually gets chosen within several months. Maybe a good candidate for April's Fools.

 

Community Chest has the reputation of being a WAD of uneven quality, I think it would be interesting to discuss. It is also one of the few important megaWADs of the past that has not been covered, like the one we are playing this month.

 

As for #1Kill, while the Doom 1 replacement is not exactly a product with a modern quality standard, it has several interesting features. If you can get past its horrible E2M2, the second half gets much more interesting with some really curious ideas. The single level EX.WAD shows a significant refinement by the author. #1Killtng is surprisingly ok and sometimes even fascinating, with evident influences from Final Doom. Much less popular than Hell Revealed, this was a supposedly ultra-hard megawad from the early days that got some attention by contemporary speedrunners.

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E4M3 - Earth, Blood and Fire - Chris "Purist" Bourke *American McGee* (100%K/87%I/66%S):

 

Yes, it is McGee, yes, there is ammo and health shortage, yes, everything is squary, orthogonal and confusing, yes, it feels like Catcombs. It is a McGee map again, but yet again, it does not represent the aesthetics of The Flesh Consumed in that regard. This map feels samey, is painful and it's quite convoluted for you to progress. You won't know where to go at start, so you try going somewhere until eventually, you'll find keys and such. I did not enjoy this one as much, its gameplay its overly difficult, just if this was about replicating the original M1 again. Still a better map than M2 for sure, and the search for telefragging the barons is kinda neat, but, a pretty samey map from Purist, which copies American McGee style pretty well, but it lacks the E4 stuff, I think it needs more wood or brown.

 

IDness ratio: 2/5

(UV Playthrough - Crispy Doom)

Order of Preference:
 

Spoiler

 

E3M3
E3M7
E3M6
E3M9

E2M6

E1M4
E4M1
E3M5
E2M7
E1M7
E3M4
E2M1
E3M2
E2M9
E2M2
E1M5
E1M6
E3M1

E1M3
E2M4

E1M2
E1M8
E4M3
E3M8
E1M1
E1M9
E4M2
E2M8
E4M9
E2M5
E2M3

 



Oh boy, I'm about to ragequit E4M4, so stay tuned.

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E4M5 – Doctrines of Devils by @Gifty

Doomsday Engine, UV-Fast, Continuous, blind run w/saves

 

Introducing a level with a free Soul Sphere was a sign of good intentions, after the mayhem of Unclean Spirits, and placing it just below a crucified body was a nice touch, as if he just exhaled his last breath and offered his vital spirit to sustain Doomguy. Ok, maybe I am flying a bit too much with imagination. Gifty was an unknown mapper to me, the only member of the team that was not involved in the Doom the way id did series before, and there are not many of his levels around. He was supposed to emulate the style of Sandy Petersen, quite an interesting challenge since the most active id author received no map credits in Thy Flesh Consumed. I did not know what to expect.

Spoiler

432436370_UDtwIdE4M5_01.jpg.6716e9a1950a3dac661532fe4b993855.jpg

I had a really good time with Doctrines of Devils. While not being an easy map by any means, featuring several small and large-scale encounters, I appreciated the surreal nature of the environment and its countless gimmicks, a plausible rendition of a hypothetical Episode 4 entry by Petersen. Firstly, the diamond-shaped courtyard turned into a hurting blood pond as soon as the ammo was approached. Secondly, the RSK vault in the north-eastern area was an intriguing way to exploit timed lifts. The south-eastern part was optional and was dedicated to the first non-secret BFG, placed in a room with closets opening in all directions and requiring the devastating power of that weapon (or the secret Invulnerability) to bring back the order.

Spoiler

11803047_UDtwIdE4M5_02.jpg.2c036840e8c1a80b8676a17ab88ebffb.jpg

The western wing sent me on a search for the YSK in a confined section. The first trap was a fast-lowering pit with Cacodemons engaging me in close quarters. There was limited space to dodge their -fast fireballs, so they hit me hard. The next round room was a lava pit with a circle of pillars to hop on, while being harassed by Lost Souls, Cacodemons, and a faraway Baron of Hell. There were several stimpacks to recover from likely fumbles.

Spoiler

1810517687_UDtwIdE4M5_03.jpg.7df3a70aeee86c4049dd4e97d5415d85.jpg

Once the skull key was mine, I backtracked to the first room to enter the yellow door. Lights went out, leaving me in total darkness, then two closets opened releasing Spectres in a terrorising fashion. This ambush found me unprepared and with -fast monsters this means death. I replayed the encounter with the rocket launcher ready to clear the closet behind me. I entered it and turned around to eliminate the rest of the enemies, that were slowly joined by four Barons of Hell. The monsters were invisible, but I pumped rockets in their direction until the place was still again. By occupying the closet, I prevented the Barons from teleporting there as well, so they did not catch me between two fires. A scary ambush, I am still shaking…

 

This level was simpler in construction and more straightforward in its progression than the predecessors. It was challenging, though more generous with health and resources, and almost never annoying with monster placement. The perfect balance and the amusing nature of most set pieces had me playing with a smile on my face, regardless of -fast monsters. In my opinion, this was a nice piece of work, a faithful replica of the mapping style of Petersen in a fictional reality, in which he designed a level for Thy Flesh Consumed. Funnily enough, a less canonical entry by a mysterious author ended up being my favourite level of the fourth episode. Looking at the old development thread, his late interest might have even saved the project.

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E3M8: Core

 

As is the case with E1M8 and E2M8, I think the map author has achieved here as much as is possible to achieve within the spirit and limitations of the project, and that's no small feat.  In particular, I think the use of environmental elements here is very strong, and contrasts wonderfully with the simplistic nature of Dis, which offers up a meagre handful of door actions to break up its static arena; here, the player must contend with damaging floors, crushing ceilings, and walls that raise and lower, all of which combine to make the battlefield a wonderfully dynamic one, compelling the player to consider the different rhythms of crushers and barriers in order to secure needed supplies without either being flattened or spending too much time exposed to the Spider Mastermind's withering fire.  By modern standards it's not a complicated set of dance steps, but it's certainly more engaging than the original E1M8, and, I think, feels like an example of what the designers at id really could have created had they better engaged the tools at their disposal.

 

I mentioned back when I was talking about E2M8 that it had a suggestion of the classic E3M8 in its overall shape; and sure, the five-pointed star here is simply a geometric shape, albeit one that's a part of occult symbols, but it's one that occurs in the original E1M8, and to see it here (rotated by 90 degrees, granted) makes me wonder if part of the project's direction was that each episode's boss map should reference or echo the boss map of a different classic episode in some fashion?  But there's nothing about the WAD's E1M8 that really calls to mind Tower of Babel, so that particular bit of speculation is likely baseless.

 

E4M1: Into The Grave

 

So, I do have memories of playing Ultimate Doom the Way id Did back in... late 2018 or so?  The file I have kicking around in my Doom folder is dated to December of that year and is marked as RC2, whereas I believe the official release was in early 2019, so clearly at the time I was playing some not-quite-finalised version during the late stages of the project.  I remember being startled by the sudden difficulty spike as compared to Doom the Way id Did, and being torn apart multiple times before figuring out how to survive that first big outdoors area, and generally responding to the whole experience along the lines of "Yep, that's a worth successor to, and emulation of, Hell Beneath, right there."  And I was probably playing that on Hurt Me Plenty, to boot.

 

I'm wondering, then, if this particular has been toned down some from RC2?  Because I've stepped things up from Hurt Me Plenty to Ultraviolence for this particular playthrough, and sure I tend to play continuous but that makes no difference at the start of an episode, and maybe that half-remembered past experience has hyped me up for a difficulty spike beyond all reasonable expectations, but honestly I went into this one expecting to be wrecked hard and wrecked often and that just... didn't happen?  I can point to one moment as I was scrambling about in the second tower when by all rights I should have been utterly shredded by shotgun sergeants who were teleporting in half-a-dozen steps below and behind me on the stairs, who for whatever reason either didn't fire or managed to miss me entirely, and had that gone any differently I would have taken a dirt nap right then and there; and sure, the earlier parts of the level involve a fair bit of dancing around cacodemons that have to be circumnavigated because you just don't have the firepower to deal with them right away.  But aside from that?  This wasn't too bad, like, at all.  Between the rocket stockpile and the radiation suits I'd go so far as to say that the map feels positively generous in outfitting you for your duel with the Cyberdemon guarding the exit, if you don't just want to lure him down into the lava and skip past him entirely, taking that rocket stockpile into the next map if you're playing continuously.  I came into this expecting to suffer, and instead I enjoyed myself considerably, and that's not something I'm going to complain about.

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6 hours ago, NiGHTS108 said:

E4M4: Unclean Spirits

By Marcaek

 

Kills: 83%

Items: 30%

Secrets: 50%

Time: 8:33

 

, first, what really stands out here to me is the visuals, while still at least partially confining to the rules, this map is an absolute stunner, especially at the start, this vine plagued marble, fortified wood, flaming sky and jailed bars do absolute wonders in colour co-ordination!

 

 

You're not kidding here. It definitely adds a little bit of extra ambience to the map and another reason why I mentioned Aeternum Map 01 because it uses the same skybox and has a somewhat similar feel.

 

 

I don't particularly want Community Chest to win (though I'll still play it) so let me cast a vote for +++Judgement.

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E4M3: Earth, Blood and Fire by Chris Bourke (purist)

 

Another map in the spirit of the all-time classic E4M1, but fortunately it's much more than a remake. The map is highly conceptual, with a central lava pit with four baron turrets around it, each one standing on a teleporter near a mandatory area for progression - the layout reminded me a bit of Doom2's Catacombs. A pistol start leads to some ammo and health starvation first, but it's not nearly as bad as in the original E4M1. Later the map becomes easier and less starvation oriented, and more so if you find the plasma gun secret (although ammo for it is very scarce) or your straferun skills allow you to reach the chaingun secret (mine were too bad for it). If you're not in a hurry/not speedrunning, it's also very helpful to incite infighting, chances are that the barons will take down most of the cacodemons. Visuals are simple but functional and close to the McGee standard. My favourite so far of this episode.

 

9/10

 

E4M4: Unclean Spirits by Michael Fraize (Marcaek)

 

This map hosts the biggest monster population until now (over 200 on UV) and is an intrincate trap fest with excellent monster placement. The layout is crafted in a way to give enemies often an edge (take the cage-like barriers in the side areas which "contain" ambushing imps to avoid you being able to skip them too easily), and particularly the baron usage is good, they feel always threatening and follow you everywhere if you dare to save ammo and let them alive (got almost some "Urania" feelings here). Difficulty is high, I think higher than in all original E4 maps, although not much more than E4M6, and it shares with it the confusing progression, where someone not knowing the map will take much damage just due to the environment with so many lava/blood floors. While the monster placement surely feels a little bit more "modern", it's not totally "off" from the E4 standard. Once you have understood the layout and its little "evilnesses" (like the dangerous optional area where you can land from two teleporters and only return via damaging floors) it's not that bad. So if you're not a doom god it's reasonable to play the map with saves to explore it and find a good route, and then trying a saveless run. I liked it, UDTWiD gets better and better.

 

9/10

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E3M6 - “Depths” by Phobus 

If the previous 5 maps seemed too refined and visually consistent to be Sandy's Inferno, then this level overcompensates on the zany and weird aspect. The opener is guaranteed to kill without foreknowledge and the crusher hallway to the blue key is simply obnoxious, and that's WITH the Radsuit secret beforehand. The geometry is full of cramped hallways, connecting the misshapen rooms, which doesn't help moving around with Doom's vanilla collision. The height variation seems to be there for the sake of it, with high-step staircases and rooms you can't see into before falling down. The saving grace is most of the liquids aren't damaging, as the rest of the map is already frustrating. I will commend the secrets, as those are intuitive to find and the "which switch doesn't belong" gimmicks are always fun. 

 

E3M9 - “Lake of Fire” by Lutz

Wait a minute, I've played this map in No End in Sight. Not actually sure if anything is different between the two versions. Anyway, it's a very obvious re-imagining of Mt Erebus, containing the signature lake of fire surrounding the sandboxy playable area. A visual step up from the map it's referencing, with each landmark looking sharp and consistent with its theme. The slow crusher hallway is the least fun, but the rest is enjoyable. Just like in the original e3m6, the idea is to gear up and find weapons and ammo while ignoring the swarms of Cacos and Lost Souls unleashed into the main area. Though this map seems to have a more pleasant ammo to monster ratio. The trickiest secret to get was that Soulsphere, as the trigger is far and inaudible.

 

E3M7 - “Inner Sanctum” by ellmo

Dark and oppressive, almost like a Sigil map. I wasn't a fan of the gameplay. Maybe because so many other maps in this episode have already done it, but I'm actually fatigued by the "e3m6 sandbox where you aimlessly run around with just a Shotgun and avoid enemies while looking for better weapons" motif. Is this how people who don't like Downtown feel, maybe. The BFG secret is activated from the exit room when nearly everything is dead, too.

 

E3M8 - “Core” by ProcessingControl

This is a great final map. Looks cool and isn't annoying to max. No resource starvation either as you're loaded with 300 cells straight away. One of my favourite Doom 1 boss levels.

 

Final Thoughts

DTWID is an enjoyable classic-style megawad. Having said that, the title oversells its level of adherence to the style of id's mappers. E1 seems like the closest to its IWAD counterpart when it comes to layout complexity, visuals, and gameplay. E2 and E3 have a noticeable divergence from the source material and contain larger and more refined maps. If not for intentionally misaligned textures and lack of microdetailing, most of those levels would not be out of place in a modern vanilla community project. The maps are mostly fun to play but E2 and E3 lean too heavily on Shotgun gameplay for my taste. The "fun" is often locked away behind secrets, so enjoyment can depend on how early and often you find them. But that's often the case with IWAD levels as well, I just have the luxury of having the maps routed in my head. 

 

Rating: 3/5

Top maps: e1m4, e2m3, e3m5

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E4M5: Doctrines of Devils. DSDA v0.24, UV-PS. 100% kills and secrets. Comp. time 18:44.

 

Doctrines of Devils is less relentless than Unclean Spirits, but I still found the start quite intense. It takes a while before you can take a breath after shooting the first pair of sergeants. The rest of the level is easier, but there was one ambush I had retry a couple of times.

 

I don't know, I liked this less than Unclean Spirits. I think it's because the layout is simpler, more IWAD-like. For example the lift area: it's a bit square, and not terribly fun waiting for the lifts to position themselves such that you can jump onto the next and finally fetch the RSK, which of course stands on a damaging floor. I also didn't appreciate the "hub area" getting filled with damaging blood. Some of the secrets are weird, for instance the double radsuits. It looked as if they could only be reached after visiting the exit room?

 

But it's not a bad level. This one's easier than E4M4, and this one doesn't quite reach the bar set by it (and E4M1), but is more at home with E4M2 and E4M3, and I think this one's a best of the three. Is this the first instance this month that we get an ambush where the room turns dark and unleashes hell on you, the iconic E1M3 trope?

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