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The DWIronman League dies to: Return to Purgatory

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!!! Recommended to read Essential Info because this WAD has a unique case with secret levels and starting map. !!!


June, 2023

don't worry, the situation is better once if you make it there

> The yearly standings

> The Ironman Discord Server


Standard Leaderboard

  1. [1] SURVIVED +2 (1:10:03): Bdubzzz - Makes a mockery out of the final map for a fourth straight victory. Well played, Bdubzzz.
  2. [1] SURVIVED +2 (1:26:31): Asbadagba - Damn, the finish makes the final two minutes all the more worth it! Literal edge of despair!
  3. [1] SURVIVED +2 (1:32:14): Brainfreezzzzz - Takes a risk without a radsuit on MAP15... and destroys the set! Great job!
  4. [1] SURVIVED +2 (2:42:12): Beginner - Back to 2022 form with this run. Nice to have you back in the top, Beginner.
  5. [1] SURVIVED +1 (1:44:12): ginc - Even without MAP32, this is shaping up to be a high finish. Really comfortable, too.
  6. [1] SURVIVED +0 (1:54:00): dt_ - The battle for second is on as dt_ snatches a second survival. Fitting.
  7. [1] SURVIVED +0 (1:56:03): Horus - Argh, all of two minutes short! Still a great run, unlike that Discord stream :^) Grats!
  8. [1] MAP32: Pseudonaut - Teamwork makes dreamwork; sandwiched by rockets. Nonetheless, committed to the gamble, love to see it.
  9. [1] MAP31: joe-ilya - Blindingly quick; breezes past the maps until a literal wall of red and green collapses in on joe. Hurts.
  10. [1] MAP15: 4shockblast - Brave jump, that. At least it was not a softlock :^)
  11. [3] MAP15: NaZa - Pro tip: never talk to your roommate about maps not having armor. It'll bite you back hard.
  12. [1] MAP15: SCF - Washing skeletons with blue tends to get quite noisy... luckily, the enemies don't mind.
  13. [1] MAP15: Suitepee - ... Sorry :(
  14. [1] MAP14: Maribo - Blood Meatball Sacrifice™.
  15. [1] MAP14: Vince Vega - This man has honour. I guess it makes up for lack of parkour skills :^)
  16. [1] MAP14: head_cannon - Fails to dance the tango through the green.
  17. [1] MAP13: LadyMistDragon - FEAR NOT, FOR THE DOOM MARINE IS RISEN! By opening a door, of all things...
  18. [1] MAP13: NoisyVelvet - That room was getting a bit too crowded, it indeed was time to dip.
  19. [1] MAP13: BoxY - No wonder BoxY did not see that coming - that was a N.O.E. missile alright.
  20. [1] MAP13: Anima Zero - "Oh hey, Mr. Spectre, what are you doing there?"
  21. [1] MAP13: Ludi - Second death at the hands of those barons. One more and they'll get a name.
  22. [1] MAP13: SuyaSS - Clear shot. Target locked. Fire at will.
  23. [1] MAP13: Andromeda - All I saw was a bunch of red, be it projectiles, be it the skin of a certain "door".
  24. [1] MAP13: Helm - Pushes into the hedge? feces? maze and discovers the TRVE 3D INFINITE HEIGHT CACODEMONS.
  25. [1] MAP11: Crusader No Regret - Well, that was hardcore ammo saving, and a hardcore shot right where it hurt most.
  26. [1] MAP11: Darth_wiader - Picked up the blue key.
  27. [2] MAP11: SiFi270 - Has a horrible fear of picking up health. Are they worth it? The chaingunners knew. :^)
  28. [1] MAP11: Chuckles_troll - Go hard or go home approach, fan of it. Encountered a very synced train of imps.
  29. [1] MAP11: SilentD00mer - Falls right into the arms of a hell knight. It was an emotional goodbye from the medikit too.
  30. [1] MAP11: Austinado - 💀💀💀 I commend you on the brave upload, and damn, that was a really cheap shot by the caco...
  31. [1] MAP11: Pegleg - Took more shots in those 30 seconds than an Instagram influencer.


Prepared Leaderboard

  1. [#] SURVIVED +2 (23:32): Anima Zero - Nobody's touching this time, that's for sure. Anima himself almost didn't. Hot damn. 


What is the Doomworld Ironman League?


The DWIronman League is a monthly competition in which participants aim to survive for as many levels as possible in the given map set, preferably in one sitting. Click the spoiler tag at the bottom of the post for a detailed list of rules. Players of all levels of ability are welcome. It could change the way you play Doom!


In June 2023 the DWIronman League dies to Return to Purgatory (-complevel 2) by James "Shade" Wilson, a name you might recognize if you're a big fan of Blood. Starting on MAP11, this mapset was released in September, 1995, but you would probably never have said it when you take a look at it. Not only is it quite polished for the time it was made in, it's also quite challenging and, as someone online said, on par with Plutonia and HR even if it was released before them. Beauty-wise... not necessarily, especially lighting, but it isn't bad; better than H2H-Xmas, dare I say. Ammo will probably never be a problem (except a unique case of a midtex slimefall on... MAP15?). Health, on the other hand... well. The mapset has a notable reliance on barons of hell, I should probably warn immediately, but cyberdemons only appear if you manage to reach MAP32 (along with 33% of the set's archviles), while revenants don't even make up 3% of the total bestiary, so the challenge is elsewhere. Find out where.


Also, I find this mapset severely underrated, so that was also a factor in the choice, along with its suitable difficulty. As I've said in March, I'd like Ironman to sometimes even be a platform where you can discover mapsets that have gone under the radar.


Either way, good luck!


Essential Info

  • Doom II (doom2.wad).
  • Compatibility level 2, or "Doom (strict)" for ZDoom derivative ports.
  • 5+2 maps, starting on MAP11, HOWEVER.
    • The way Return to Purgatory works is that if you exit MAP15 normally, you are done. However, MAP15 has a secret exit leading to MAP31, which itself has a secret exit leading to MAP32. The way I intended to rank Ironman runners is that, if you selected the normal exit on any of these maps, you've survived. However, if you select the secret exit, you haven't survived yet. Thus, under the current system, if a player died on MAP32, while another entered the normal exit on MAP15 and was thus done, the one who exited would be above the MAP32 victim. Unfair? If I chose to rank people who died on MAP32 as Survived+1, they've neither survived nor would they have normally been ranked higher than those who reached MAP16 (closest equivalent to surviving MAP15) in Ironman. This is a point open for discussion. 
  • Time estimate (if survival): 60-120 minutes.
  • As the set in question is from 1995, softlocks are to be expected. I've found none when I played this quite a year ago, but I was being quite cautious and I might have fallen in some yet I don't remember them. Stay frosty.


> Download Return to Purgatory

prboom-plus.exe -iwad doom2.wad -file dm2purge.wad -complevel 2 -skill 4 -record demo_name.lmp -warp 11




  • There are two competitions: Standard and Prepared:

    • To compete successfully in the Standard competition: your first play of the selected WAD(s) constitutes your one and only attempt for the month.

    • To compete successfully in the Prepared competition: your one and only attempt for the month is determined BY YOU immediately before play and may follow any prior number of active (playing the set) preparation that is strictly for practice/inspection purposes only. You cannot compete in the Standard competition after submitting a run to the Prepared competition. You may submit the first of your practice attempts to the Standard competition.

  • UV only (excepting 1CC format), continuous recording. No pistol-starting each level.
  • Demos (PrBoom+, GLBoom, Eternity or Chocolate), stream highlights and video recordings are the only accepted proofs. You must link to these runs in the thread. 
    • If you stream your run on Twitch, please highlight/save it so that it doesn't go missing in case someone's very late with the obituaries.
  • No additional WADs may be loaded. Cosmetic WADs are fine if they're purely cosmetic.
  • No inspection of the WAD(s)'s content in an editor if you are submitting a Standard run, its category 3 included.
  • No cheat codes and no features that result in behavior beyond what is possible in the intended source port (e.g. freelook, jumping and crouching in a boom set). This includes dynamic lights and brightmaps. If streaming or recording videos using an advanced source port with compatibility options, you must display these settings on-screen before your run. In ZDoom derivative ports, "Doom/Boom(strict)" will suffice.
  • If you choose to stream/record your run for video rather than provide a demo and you die before completing a single level, either on the first map of a set OR because a single level was selected for the month, you must display the number of monsters killed/remaining in the level before you quit.
  • You do not have to play the secret levels in order to register a complete run. However, a player who finishes the game having completed more secret levels than their competitors will rank higher than them.
  • You cannot load a game having progressed past the save point.
  • You cannot consult Doom Builder during your run to check for map details.
  • If the recording of your official run is interrupted due to technical difficulties, you are not permitted a second attempt. Any surviving recording may be used to register a DNF result.
  • Accidentally restarting a level before a death exit takes you to the tally screen will stop your run immediately. You will still be registered as entering the next map (i.e. the one which you never entered) using a calculation to figure out what the intermission time would have been.
  • If you are competing in the Standard competition, you are required to affix one of three numbers to your run informing the League of your degree of familiarity with the map/set played. Note that your evaluation should only take into consideration the content covered in your run (e.g. if you remember only one part of a level in a set you haven't played before but never reach that level, you should list your run as a [1] instead of [2]):


  1. This is a blind run. If I have played or watched any of the level/set being played before, I cannot remember any details that would offer a reasonable advantage over truly blind players. *
  2. This is not a blind run. I have familiarity with the set - played the level/set before, or watched it being played, and can remember some details that would offer a reasonable advantage over blind players.
  3. This is not a blind run. While I have not outright played it, I've watched the level/set being played via stream, demo or video after it was announced as this month's challenge.


* "Reasonable" in this instance asks you to consider whether the details in question are worth committing to memory. As in, you would thank the person who gave you this information with a straight face and not expect to be laughed at for being an utter berk.


Previous threads:

  Hide contents



07 - Jenesis (winner: Demon of the Well)

08 - Crusades (winner: Ribbiks)

09 - Nilla Doom (winner: Demon of the Well)

10 - Khorus' Speedy Shit (winner: WH-Wilou84)

11 - Perdition's Gate (winner: WH-Wilou84)

12 - UAC Ultra (winner: PjSpartacus)




01 - Jade Earth (winner: Demon of the Well)

02 - Legacy of Heroes (winner: Roofi)

03 - Back to Saturn X E1 (winner: dew)

04 - Mapgame (winner: ClonedPickle)

05 - Vae Victus 1 & 2 (winner: Demon of the Well)

06 - Disturbia (winner: Ancalagon)

07 - Insertion (winner: Veinen)

08 - Unholy Realms (winner: Demon of the Well)

09 - Osiris (winner: Demon of the Well)

10 - Endgame & Endpoint (winner: Veinen)

11 - Oscillation (winner: Ancalagon)

12 - Doom the Way id Did (winner: kmc)




01 - Combat Shock 2 (winner: Killer5)

02 - Coffee Break E1 (winner: Eris)

03 - Warlock's Hearth (winner: Demon of the Well)

04 - 50 Monsters (winner: WH-Wilou84)

05 - Double Impact (winner: RjY)

06 - Rush (winner: WH-Wilou84)

07 - The Darkening E1 & E2 (winner: Veinen)

08 - The Plutonia Experiment (winner: Zero-Master)

09 - Community Chest 4 - MAP20: Interstellar Sickness and MAP21: Shaman's Device (winner: leodoom85)

10 - Doom 64 for Doom II (winner: Roofi)

11 - TNT: Renascence & TNT: Resistance (winner: an_mutt)

12 - Ultimate Doom the Way id Did (winner: an_mutt)




01 - Hellfire: Dreams (winner: Beginner)

02 - THT: Threnody - MAP10: Fomalhaut (winner: Scotty)

03 - Stardate 20X6 (winner: WH-Wilou84)

04 - Base Ganymede: Complete (winner: Vince Vega)

05 - The DWIronman League died waiting for SIGIL (winner: John Romero)

06 - SIGIL (winner: leodoom85)

07 - Vanguard & Lunatic (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Pegleg)

08 - 2017 Collection (winner: an_mutt - prep winner: Vince Vega)

09 - Revolution! (winner: NaZa - prep winner: Pegleg)

10 - Monster Hunter Part I & Part II (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Pegleg)

11 - Abcess (winner: Demon of the Well - prep winner: Steve D?)

12 - Scythe (winner: Spectre01 - prep winner: Arbys550)




01 - Hellscape (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Archi)

02 - No Sleep for the Dead (winner: Ancalagon - prep winner: Anima Zero)

03 - Baker's Dozen (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Pegleg)

04 - Occult Secrets of the Third Reich & Biotech is Godzilla (winner: joe-ilya - prep winner: Horus)

05 - Bloody Rust (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: dt_)

06 - Vrack 1, 2 and 3 (winner: ReaperAA - prep winner: Bashe)

07 - Running Late 2 (winner: Roofi - prep winner: Pegleg)

08 - Epic (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Daerik)

09 - Hell Revealed (winner: Roofi - prep winner: Crusader No Regret)

10 - Dark Resolution 2008 (winner: Roofi - prep winner: Austinado)

11 - 2002: A Doom Odyssey: 10th Anniversary Edition Episode 3 (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Pegleg)

12 - Eviternity (winner: Daerik - prep winner: Pegleg)




01 - Sawdust (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Daerik)

02 - Alien Vendetta (winner: Demonologist - prep winner: Anima Zero)

03 - Criticality & Miasma (winner: Daerik - prep winner: Crusader No Regret)

04 - World Orifice (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Killer5)

05 - Violence (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: ScrappyMcDoogerton)

06 - Firebox (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: 4shockblast)

07 - Scythe 2 (winner: Arbys550 - prep winner: an_mutt)

08 - Resurgence (winner: Beginner - prep winner: Suitepee)

09 - The Eye (winner: galileo31dos01 - prep winner: an_mutt)

10 - Glaive & Glaive 2 (winner: Veinen - prep winner: Tezur0)

11 - Sunlust (winner: Daerik - prep winner: nobody)

12 - H2H-XMas (winner: Daerik - prep winner: 4shockblast)




01 - Realm of Shades (winner: mhrz - prep winner: Pegleg)

02 - Return to Hadron E1 (winner: NightTerror - prep winner: Maribo)

03 - Syringe (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: SCF)

04 - Jägermörder 1 and 2 (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Maribo)

05 - The Rebirth (winner: NightTerror - prep winner: NaZa)

06 - Man on the Moon (winner: Master Medi - prep winner: ginc)

07 - Vigor (winner: akolai - prep winner: SCF)

08 - Somewhere in Time (winner: Archi - prep winner: NaZa)

09 - Sucker Punch 1 & 2 (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Pegleg)

10 - Sharp Things (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: LadyMistDragon)
11 - Knee-Deep in the Dead + .deh (winner: NightTerror - prep winner: Lol 6)

12 - Christmas Cheer from the Chill Zone (winner: NightTerror - prep winner: NaZa)




01 - Bury My Heart Knee Deep (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Maribo)

02 - LAZAREVENANT - 13 map WIP demo (winner: Suitepee - prep winner: nobody)

03 - Demonic Deviation (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: nobody)

04 - Beyond Revival (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Anima Zero)

05 - Malevolence (winner: Bdubzzz - prep winner: Anima Zero)


Edited by NaZa : full leaderboard update

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Made it to the start of map 3 before I fat panic fingered opening a door and got plasma'd in the back.  For a '95 wad, there's some fun constant monster slaying action here so I'll probably do a prepared run at some point this month.


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Category 2, believe it or not. Dead on Map11 in 7:40 with 116 kills. I knew its significance beforehand as the wad that convinced Monolith to hire its creator to design levels for Blood. That might actually have contributed to my failure, since I was using a cosmetic mod to make it more Blood-like, and its stimpack replacement is based on Freedoom's health bonus graphic, so I was ignoring perfectly good health because I forgot it was worth 10 as opposed to just 1. Besides that, it's been a while since I played Doom all that seriously, so I was fairly rusty. But despite both of those excuses, I feel like I still would have done a lot better if I only remembered that the blue key platform was a teleporter.


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Cat 1

Died on MAP15

Kills: 167/362




The mapper's favorite enemy must've been the shotgunner



Was starting to get pretty tired by the end. Almost gave up on map 13 because I couldn't find the exit, and got lost on 14 as well. I wasn't sure if I wanted to look for the secret maps after all that, but thankfully a face rocket and surprise monster closet made the decision for me.


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Died on the fifth map because I lost armor and accidentally descended. Simple as that. Category 3 because I watched Brainfreezzzzz's attempt to cheer him on. Sucks, but oh well... Was quite a comfortable run up to that point too...



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Category: 1
Dead on: Map14
Kills: 113/317

Time: 32:10 or something close, time math is hard.



Fuck you caco.

This wad is actually sick as hell, feels miles ahead of the curve for '95. If someone sent me these maps in '95 I would have hired them, too.

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Category 1 

Dead on: MAP13

Kills: 27/513

Time: 36:28



Huge open areas with enemies are a bit of my Kryptonite.

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Category 1
Dead on: MAP13
Kills: 41/513
Time: 42:10


This was really fun! I managed to find a kind of unfair way to die, but on reflection I shouldn't have been running where I was running with a slow gun out. I'll post a video link as well when it uploads. 

also video




Edited by Helm

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Survived blind! (no secret)




I wussed out of the secret maps; after one too many close shaves I figured I'd used up all my luck and cashed my chips while I was winnin'


Looked like the nineties, but did not play like it


Only potential softlock I saw was on the ramp up to the 'clawed wood' door in the main open area of the third map, I reckon if you drop left of the door off the wall, you will be trapped in by tree sprites


Took about 2 hours, and there's a bonus bit of content at the end, it's my chainsaw/tyson run of suburbs

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Did some jump on map 15 and got stuck, exited map 14 at 60:44, started out promising, got very tedious towards the end, ngl. Still pretty good for the 90s, but would be nice if not every map was 500 monsters long. :^)


category 1



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Category 1 run...


"I had made it past the 5 normal maps, with the exit of map 15 staring me in the face. All I had to do was push the button, and I'd be given my fourth survival of the year. And yet......some of my Twitch chat wanted me to push for the secret exit. Torn between survival and pleasing my audience, I chose the diplomatic option of a Twitch poll. 4 votes to 3, the secret exit I shall instead seek. And so I turned away from clear survival into the arms of hunting for secrets..."


Then I died to a Baron of Hell a minute later. Should have used the plasma gun instead of trying to strafe and SSG him and his partner on a narrow ledge.


(311/379 monsters killed.)

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Well, this is both good and bad lol


Cat 1

Survived (Maps 11-15, no secret exit)

Don't remember exact time but close to 2 hours



Good because I survived. Bad because I absent-mindedly took the normal exit forgetting about the bonus secret map challenge lol. Oh well, might end up paying dividends



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Category: )1

Dead on Map 03 (15:21)

Kills - Comparable to Helm but probably less. 


I came into Map 03 with poor health, and the hitscannage throughout this wad just didn't let up.


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DEAD: Map13 (Map03)

Category: 1 (blind)

Time of Death: 22:51

Time of Arrival: 18:14

Kills: 143/513

Port: DSDA-Doom 0.25 (cl 2) (uncapped framerate)

Demo: noisy_dm2purge.zip


Cause of Death:

Nothing special.  Got whittled down and decided to gamble with my positioning.  The pit below was packed with hitscanners though.


Good stuff, as always.


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Category 1.

Survived +1 in 1:44:12. At this point I was almost 2 hours deep and I assumed that the MAP31 exit would take me straight to MAP32. But as soon as I hit the exit switch I knew I had fucked up and that the OP had warned me about another secret exit. But on the other hand, maybe this was a blessing in disguise if MAP32 was going to kill me lol.



The first 4 maps are a bit nasty for 1995 and very ahead of their time, but the set does begin to show its age after that, and the secret level is just a throwaway map, something I would have made in 1995. When I was 14 years old. I was cruising through the first 2 maps, third and fourth maps definitely upped the difficulty a bit and that's when I slowed down to my default Ironman snail's pace. Was having a good time but yeah, MAP15 and MAP31 were a bit tedious, if the author didn't have to stop development then they might have been in better shape.


I probably spent a good 10 minutes looking for how to reach the secret exit in MAP15. I thought that my times would be slow so I might as well go for extra maps.


Also, some of the secrets are very rewarding. Megaspheres really help you deal with the 50 billion shotgunners.




Edited by ginc

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Cat I, pure blind. MAP14, ~220 kills, 77 minutes ingame.


Worst things happen not when there are tons of enemies, but when you get lost.

I had no idea where to go next, as I got back to the main area with no new keys. So I decided to return to the previous place, but in order to do that, you need to do some stupid platforming now that the platforms lowered during the first visit.

I failed to do that 5 times and left with 2 HP thanks to -10 lava floors everywhere. "Kapitulieren? -- Niemals!" -- I thought and ended my suffering with a rocket. Such good chances to survive this month, but seems like '95 level design is tougher than me.



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Category 1 demo. Survived + 2 in 2:42:12.

At first I thought that it would turn into disaster, because on the very first map I've got 2-3 radsuit leaks in the area where secret backpack is. In the end it was smooth-ish cruise, with the exception of map15 where I've started running low (in my mind) on ammo and wasted time backtracking around for armor after I've foolishly wasted 200 that I've entered the map with.


There is a bit where I've had to afk for a bit a sat in intermission screen for about 10 minutes after map11. Map32 is just 16 minutes of me remembering how to guideless glide. I've even wondered if the gaps were actually too small for it, but it turned out I just had to try harder.


Edited by Beginner

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Obituaries finally updated. I apologize it took so long, on the Discord I let people know I'm having uni finals this month so I couldn't be too active.


Either way, last month was quite a treat - @Bdubzzz won by going the furthest quickest, but one has to definitely applaud @Pseudonaut for a best-equal second place finish which was a really noteworthy result. Another is a strong 7th place for @Ludi, which enabled them to jump 13 places on the yearly board!

Speaking of, the structure of the top 12 was largely unchanged, only @ginc (entering the Top 5) swapping places with 4shock and Suitepee overtaking Maribo. What's to note there, though, is that there's already small battles beginning to form. Bdubzzz is currently the runaway first, but from 2nd (currently held by @LadyMistDragon who's in great form this year so far) to 5th - ginc - is a very exciting battle. Then comes a sharp jump, but the battle from 6th to 11th - 4shock to Pseudonaut - is also quite noteworthy, as there's only 26,000 points between them. Another sharp jump to yours truly and Anima Zero follows. So it'll be exciting in the coming months. @head_cannon has a curious statistic in that they've been exactly 22nd three months in a row now. Might try to break that curse this time :D

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Here's my Category 1 run.




Dead on: Map 11

Kills: 7/234

Time: 0:33


Another run that I was concerned would take a lot more time than it ended up taking.


There's not much for me to say. I didn't see much of the mapset. I can't comment much on the placement of enemies, health, etc. or about the aesthetics of the mapset, because I only saw the first room. It seemed like it could have been a decent setup for a start, but I handled it quite poorly.

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Cat 1? Technically I saw 4shock play like 1 minute of this wad during his ironman attempt ( didn't know he was streaming it ) but idk I just remember him SSGing some monsters... so up to Naza if he wants to count it as Category 1.

Survived + 2 in 1:10:03


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