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Toxic Shock - Boom Compatible Semi-Speedmap

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40 minutes ago, FEDEX said:

- I really like the status bar you've chosen - 👍

Thanks, I felt the greener and more gritty one from Doomcity would be more appropriate. 

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This one is fairly tough for sure, my skills are just a bit too rusty at the moment to legitimately beat it but it's not an unfair challenge. I like that it's shorter in length since that really makes maps with tough fights accessible to players of modest ability like myself. Nice aesthetic for a speedmap and some interesting fights. It's pretty brutal with forced damage in places but for the most part it places demands on your movement and prediction ability and there's a lot of enjoyable chaos. Relatively punishing if you make a mistake and the ammo early on is somewhat tight as well. The monster placement and simple arena design are well designed to not completely screw you over as long as you make good decisions. It's also challenging in a way that hooked me more than most maps do; normally I might lose patience after a couple deaths but I made progress each time which was rewarding rather than frustrating.

 

 

Spoiler

I did a couple runs and managed to progress with better strategies and relying a bit more on infighting, but I can't quite survive the point blank cyberdemon. The only strategies I can come up with is either to just dance with him and kill him at close range (which I'm not crazy about since I tend to be on low health), or to time a godlike revenant missile to hit him before he gibs you and buy time to hit the switch and bail. With the revs sitting up high and the ceiling being a bit low, it takes some negotiating to get one through and I definitely needed saves to pull it off. If you can keep him alive, it seems like a nice strat for infighting the final room's revenant waves but between the hurtfloors and flanking projectiles I just can't get them to infight consistently without save scumming. I normally don't have a problem with cybers in general but that arena makes it very tough to deal with out of all the fights in the map due to splash damage. I'm curious if I'm missing something obvious that's intended or if I'm just bad.

 

I had some luck backtracking to the outdoor area and cheesing the cyberdemon through the bars at first but for some reason on later runs he'd sneak some rockets through. I also switched from GZDoom to PRBoom+ complevel 9 so that might have affected collision a bit.

 

Also the blue door has an unpegged texture on the rear side (and there may have been others on moving sectors but that was the only obvious one I can recall), minor aesthetic thing. Other than that it seems like everything works as intended so it's a pretty solid piece of work.

 

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25 minutes ago, Lucius Wooding said:

This one is fairly tough for sure, my skills are just a bit too rusty at the moment to legitimately beat it but it's not an unfair challenge. I like that it's shorter in length since that really makes maps with tough fights accessible to players of modest ability like myself. Nice aesthetic for a speedmap and some interesting fights. It's pretty brutal with forced damage in places but for the most part it places demands on your movement and prediction ability and there's a lot of enjoyable chaos. Relatively punishing if you make a mistake and the ammo early on is somewhat tight as well. The monster placement and simple arena design are well designed to not completely screw you over as long as you make good decisions. It's also challenging in a way that hooked me more than most maps do; normally I might lose patience after a couple deaths but I made progress each time which was rewarding rather than frustrating.

Glad you enjoyed it. I was a little worried about the difficulty and was leaning on the hope that players would accept it for its length. Maybe I'll do more with this approach, like a mapset with maps like this.

25 minutes ago, Lucius Wooding said:

 

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I did a couple runs and managed to progress with better strategies and relying a bit more on infighting, but I can't quite survive the point blank cyberdemon. The only strategies I can come up with is either to just dance with him and kill him at close range (which I'm not crazy about since I tend to be on low health), or to time a godlike revenant missile to hit him before he gibs you and buy time to hit the switch and bail. With the revs sitting up high and the ceiling being a bit low, it takes some negotiating to get one through and I definitely needed saves to pull it off. If you can keep him alive, it seems like a nice strat for infighting the final room's revenant waves but between the hurtfloors and flanking projectiles I just can't get them to infight consistently without save scumming. I normally don't have a problem with cybers in general but that arena makes it very tough to deal with out of all the fights in the map due to splash damage. I'm curious if I'm missing something obvious that's intended or if I'm just bad.

 

I had some luck backtracking to the outdoor area and cheesing the cyberdemon through the bars at first but for some reason on later runs he'd sneak some rockets through. I also switched from GZDoom to PRBoom+ complevel 9 so that might have affected collision a bit.

 

Spoiler

The cyberdemon fight was the most annoying section to implement. It's difficult to encourage the player to actually fight one without locking them in a room, but if you use a technique like lowering bars in the first room then it's more difficult to gauge when they should finish lowering due to RNG. In the titlepic, you can see the cyberdemon is out of the hole before the player has gotten there and that's due to the fact that he used to be able to fire at you from the beginning. The problem was he would usually be busy infighting with something out of range by the time you showed up. Him rising out of the ground and the death hallway was really my best solution at the time. Also, you weren't the only one having trouble fighting him with the splash damage and all. I honestly cant say I've beaten the map without saves and I made the damn thing. My philosophy since the beginning of my mapping career has always been "if it's brutally difficult for you, it's hopefully at least a little challenging for Doomworld" since I consider myself a novice player and want to give others a challenge. Of course, a few hours after uploading this I finished Scythe 2 on ultra-violence, so I'm figuring out whether or not I'm skilled enough to say "if it's brutally difficult for me, it's brutally difficult for Doomworld, dummy". 

 

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Very spicy map, Spine. Lots of challenging, claustraphobic combat that will push you to the brink with elegant progression and swift design/layout. This is definitely your best work yet, fam. Well done :^)

 

 

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It can be very difficult to place a good cyberdemon sometimes, even though they're a useful enemy. Obviously the player's health, the arena layout, elevation differences and your available weapons can all make a huge difference to the context. I think this fight is definitely doable as is but the rest of the fights are much more entertaining and fair by comparison. Overall the map has a nice style of combat and I hope you don't lose that if you make more stuff. 

 

By no means am I asking you to change anything but here's a couple ideas I think would be easy to implement that would nerf the fight a bit without a big redesign:

 

Spoiler

-I think the easiest method would be to remove all the solid collision pillars from the bars next to him; that way it will allow all rockets to pass through without splash damage as long as you fight him with the bars behind you. It might help to even use monster blocking linedefs to keep him in place since he's still a potent threat and you need to deal with him before hitting the switch. It'd just prevent him from walking up to you and trapping you against the bars where you couldn't dodge at all. From there as long as you don't make a mistake, you can empty your ammo into him without bleeding health. Keeping him stationary will also make it very ineffective to shoot him from outside I believe since you wouldn't be able to hit much of his model. 

 

-You can simply make the arena a touch bigger, and maybe add a bit of health to mitigate splash damage; healing back up to 100% with a pair of medikits or a berserk will help keep the player alive from the chip damage for 20 SSG shots or a long burst of plasma, while still making a direct hit just as deadly. The splash damage will also be lessened and you'd gain a touch more distance to react to his shots; even a couple dozen map units of diameter could make a significant difference in consistent survival. 

 

-An alternative to those two options; you could use impassible bars or fencing on the concrete rear wall of the room, so the player still has the same area to move, but the rockets can pass through and detonate against the solid wall set in a bit further back. It'd pose the same challenge but only deal like a quarter of the splash damage per rocket. Would be a good opportunity to chuck in some gore decorations or other visual features to go with the slime falls as well. 

 

-You could move the revenants to the right and lower them a bit so they can more easily hit the cyber, which could buy you just enough time to get to the switch if you get him to successfully infight. I've gotten this strat to work as it is, but it took saving to get it, and it's definitely not apparent to the player since you have to finagle the missile to get it through the doorway. I think revenants would likely melt in a single volley as well but more durable foes like barons would be slow to attack. If you go this route I'd also make the cyber deaf and turned away from the entrance so you have more ability to pull off your infighting shenanigans. It wouldn't diminish the shock value or dread from seeing him pop up IMO which is definitely a major reason for using him there.

 

-Since the imps in the tower in the outdoor area don't seem much of a threat and their fireballs don't reach a lot of places, you could replace them with heavier monsters, maybe 2-3 arachnotrons or barons or mancubi and block them off at first. Once you walk into the arena you could then open a window for them to fire through the bars and trigger infighting without the player needing to think about it, most likely saving their bacon. Foes on the ground level outside wouldn't hit him but the tower actually could give a nice clear shot.

 

 

Also I recommend you check out Sunlust map 08 if you're not familiar, (Decino did a good playthrough vid on it and showed different strategies in the blind vs practiced runs) it's one of my favorite maps (and much more beatable than most of the wad). It uses a few cyberdemon encounters that are very well done and could provide good inspiration on how to use them. As a matter of fact, all three times use the same kind of "cyberdemon arena requiring a switch to escape" type of trope which you use in yours.

Spoiler

-The blue key fight in particular, is very similar in concept to what you do here; you collect a key and get locked in with a sleeping and stationary one along with an arena of monsters. You need to shimmy past him to hit a switch to escape, while heaps of hell knights and sniping imps create a mosh pit. However all the extra monsters actually help a bunch if you can cause infighting; you can just distract the cyber and squeeze next to him without getting bopped by rockets and get the heck out. It creates the same kind of problem and threat but you can essentially beat it 100% consistently with good strategy. In his blind run Decino does not do this and chaos and hilarity ensue. You then have the option of coming back later with a BFG if you want to kill him, or you can clear the room and safely peekaboo shoot him as well. Scary looking fight that's really not bad at all and very rewarding.

 

-There's a somewhat confined cyber fight where you get the BFG near the end, once again he spawns with some barons and revenants so you can make him infight for a few moments. There are also some hell knight meatshields blocking an escape switch so you either need to take care of him in a fairly tight arena (although with BFG it's a stressful but doable task) or BFG the HKs to get out. There's also more space and a bit of cover so even though there are some enemies flanking you, it's a lot safer. There's also a window elsewhere in the map that he can't really shoot through so once you escape you can polish him off at your leisure if you wish.

 

- The final fight uses a bunch of heavy demons and a fairly obstructed arena with a cyberdemon on a pillar. You can't really BFG him efficiently and with him shooting downward you can run into splash damage trouble since they hit the floor near you rather than miss. However legions of HKs and pain elementals keep him fairly distracted so it's more chaotic and movement based than anything. Once you get the switch, the observant player can notice the pillar he's on was a teleport destination from the early parts of the map, so you can freely telefrag him and not have to whittle him down (or just leave the map if not going for 100%). 

 

Anyhow it's all up for discussion, this is all just my opinion and you don't need to justify any mapping decisions to me or apologize.

 

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Was meant to give this a shot earlier. Pretty fun and mean map, especially the area where you basically have to deal with a cyberdemon point-blank and the fight with 5 arch-viles, also the non-solid walls make dodging revballs a bit of a pain in the ass. But overall pretty entertaining and nothing too aggravating. Would seriously like to see more maps of this style.

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This map was AMAZING

 

Short fast furious and frantic. Everything about it was delightful I had a blast. Great times 🍗

 

 

 

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Fun little challenging map.  I like when I realized you had set up a sunken computer as a nice ledge to fire at the cyber demon, at least I assume that was the intention.  Some nice challenging, cramped encounters!

 

(linked to timecode)

 

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Maybe it's because I tend to not backtrack often and I have a problem of only playing my own maps the way I intended without considering how others would go through them, but you two made me realize how annoying the chaingunner room is and the "rollup garage door" bug (how the hell didn't I notice that). I might go through and fix the problems with the map at some point for a final version soon.

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Toxic Shock

A map with its dose of difficulty but that really has its own rhythm, hm... it may be that there are certain things that I don't like at the beginning, such as the lack of ammunition in the main room, or medkits as well, but halfway through things get a little tougher, but nevertheless, at the end of it all, the situation can become very hostile during that fight with the cyberdemon quite close to the player, and that thing about having to pick up the plasma gun that is in the middle of it, it is simply brutal and a bit in bad taste, however, when opening the other door thanks to the switch that is placed in the same area as the Cyberdemon, this creature becomes most useful during the final fight, so I see why it was placed there. In any case, the map did represent a challenge but it was not impossible to beat, thanks to the ammunition at the end, and that you have also allowed the door to remain open, for which that gesture is truly appreciated. Interesting and enjoyable map but certain things need to be fixed so that it can be an excellent experience.

 


 

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