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The DWmegawad Club plays: Realm of Chaos 25th Anniversary Edition

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MAP03 - “Mars Base Alpha” by Clint Sago and Rob Berkowitz

doom01.png

 

Quite the hot start with those shotgunners facing you. Guaranteed to take some damage there. The map mellows out once you get the SSG as none of the traps are particularly mean. The Arachnotron + Pinky setup tries to get you by forcing you into the Chaingunners, but it's easy enough to run back and line-of-sight the Arachnotron while blasting the Pinkies. It's nice that there is a crusher for those Barons, but that was found after shotgunning both. The two Hell Knights before the exit aren't fun to fight because of the stairs and how narrow they are. This map is easily better than the previous two, but it's still heavily square with monotonous texturing. The blue flames from the Mancubus look really cool, too.

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Map 03 : "Mars Base Alpha"

 

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The improvements brought to map 03 are more considerable as the original version suffer of underdeveloped parts. The red key has now its own quest in the sewers at the nothern section of the map and not just a tiny room with nothing to explore.

 

In addition to the expansions, tougher battles than in the original version are also added to reinforce the adventure aspect of the map. It's a detail, but the caged hell knights have been replaced by barons, encouraging players to find an alternative to the SSG to kill them. I personally killed them manually.

 

Likewise, small switches unlocking secrets are visible, a sign of modernization on one side.

 

As map 01, map 03 benefitiates of more detailed light gradiants and rounded angles which considerably help making the visuals a lot less abrupt. The work on the lighting help making this map (and lot other ones in the anniversary edition) more moodier.

 

Overall, that's what I expect when I play this wad, but we'll see in the next map how some maps had to be extensively reworked to reach a minimum tolerance threshold.

 

Grade : C+ (11/20) - old version

Grade : B (13/20) - new version

 

Spoiler

 

 

 

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MAP03: Mars Base Alpha by Clint Sago and Rob Berkowitz

 

Mars Base Alpha kicks off with a surprising number of hitscanners, but it slows down afterwards. Unlike the previous level, this one feels more spacious, but it's deceptive - narrow walkways over pools of slime offers little place to dodge, with the red key fight being the high point. It killed me when I fell down and couldn't find my way back. The rest is fine, though a clear hub-based design does slow the pacing a bit.

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MAP03: Mars Base Alpha (UV, PS, Saveless)
Going off my memory here a bit, but the map starts off hot and subsides a bit after that. Still, (ah, the memory is finally kicking in) the rest of the map is strong. I particularly liked the large reactor/drainage room with the Chaingunners, Pinkies and Cacos. We are at the MAP03 and already the maps are starting to demand a bit of attention.

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MAP04 - “Sewers” by Jim Bagrow

 

wow, so quality in this wad just steps up with each map huh? ist noticeable the combat was reworked for the rerelease, because there's a lot of ambushes that feel modern, and basically the great combat is obviously what carried the map. The issues i have is that it isn't thematically consistent and there's a shitload of filler in the form of corridor shootouts but is fun to play for the most part. The archvile triplet ambush, the starting room and the following dark room with arachno snipers are noteworthy.

 

8/10

Edited by Cutman 999

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Played a couple more maps and damn the quality of the action is very good for the time. @Cammy, were only the aesthetics of the wad changed or also the encounters?

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Map 03: Mars Base Alpha

by Clint Sago and Rob Berkowitz

 

Gee, I wonder why Clint....but nah, this is as 90s in its amateurishness as it gets! Much of this map is even more cramped than the last one, despite the presence of a number of more open areas and combat generally seems geared towards nastiness, as if the hitscanner-filled start didn't tell us enough about that! The red key ambush is still laughably idiotic though, especially when one can just run to the teleporter here to avoid being killed and arguably, there might be little choice. It's pretty nice to see enemies like Arachnotrons appear when you start thinking that now might be a good time to exit. Although in the red key's location, this gets a little questionable since there's basically zero room to move and we've got to break through in a region where we'll probably get cock-blocked no matter what! No secrets this time, though I only spotted one at any rate. One last note: the midi here adds in some Mellotron and  Eastern-style guitar to create something that certainly isn't Mark Klem but sort of treads in a similar direction!

 

 

 

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MAP03 - “Mars Base Alpha” by Clint Sago and Rob Berkowitz

 

Previously....

Quote

Can't offer any real complaints here with some unusual texture choices in places. One thing I wish could have happened is that the player would have to make an effort to grab weapons and armour instead of giving them all at the start. Also the final battle was a bit disappointing as the cover trivialises the fight.

Other than that I really enjoyed this map.

 

This one has had quite a tune up, more fleshed out and a much more cohesive package. The start offers quite a hot start and the red key later on offers a solid challenge. The only iffy part of this map was the hellknights at the end that essentially require shooting from the stairs where they can't harm you. Overall this is the best map so far.

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MAP02: Outpost 27

Spoiler

UV | Pistol start | No saves

K: 100% | I: 100% | S: 100%

The word "claustrophobia" is probably a good way to define the map, as most of the encounters will take place in tight hallways. The worst encounters get are the (singular) arachnotron outside as well as the hell knights peppered throughout the map, and at most you get a shotgun and chaingun to deal with them (although it's MAP02 so I wasn't expecting anything too crazy). I kinda like how you revisit rooms as you progress through the level though. Also, suddenly getting jumpscared by the monsters that suddenly appear gave me bit of a shock to the system, but it's again a manageable fight. The music here also complements the claustrophobia of the map, giving a mysterious but "push forward" feeling.

 

MAP03: Mars Base Alpha

Spoiler

UV | Pistol start | Saves not needed

K: 100% | I: 0% | S: 0%

This map has a scary start with the handful of hitscanners thrown at you, but it's manageable. On my first attempt, I didn't notice the kinda-hidden-away switch that crushed the caged hell knights, so I wasted shotgun ammo on them (but I did telefrag the arachnotron so that made up for it that time). While the seemingly scariest part is the red key fight with the trios of chaingunners, hell knights, and cacodemons; I personally think the final fight against the two hell knights outside the exit room is the hardest part since claustrophobia strikes again with the stairs in a tight hallway funneling you into a small room with them. It'll probably kill you if you don't have health and armor and/or aren't privy in dodging. Unfortunately, I didn't figure out how to access the secret supercharge. This music here was also a bop as expected (the triplets part was cool).

 

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4 hours ago, Pechudin said:

Played a couple more maps and damn the quality of the action is very good for the time. @Cammy, were only the aesthetics of the wad changed or also the encounters?

 

Thank you! The encounters were changed, yes, but not quite as much as you might think. In terms of influence and notoriety it's obviously no question, but I personally think the average Realm of Chaos map plays better than the average Memento Mori map, for instance. RoC fights tend to be focused and set in memorable areas, so oftentimes it only takes a couple tweaks to get it close to the modern standard of action. Of course, there are still a bevy of drastically-reworked or even all-new fights, but I didn't hollow the megawad out and fill it in entirely with my own concepts.

 

Ignore that for map04, though. That one's a different map.

 

My first pass over this megawad was a lot more conservative than my second. It wasn't until that second pass that map03: Mars Base Alpha came into its own, I think. The '96 version of this map has a tiny starting room with two zombiemen, then you drop down into the diamond-shaped southern hub and wait for a wall to lower, and then you can explore the map. Getting rid of that sequence and just starting you in the hub with an army looking at you gives this map an instant boost, I feel.

 

Rob and Sago did some great work with the detail in this map - it was really only lighting that I adjusted. The pillars in the central area, which use sky sectors so they appear to be topped by right angles, are a fixture of the '96 version, and I was so new to mapping when I first started this project that I had no idea how the hell they pulled it off.

 

Although the map's structure is mostly unchanged, the progression is much different. In the original, you enter the sewer for your first key, then into the ducts for the second key, then the side room for the third, and then you can leave. It kinda felt to me like you were going from the most interesting place to least, which just isn't right at all, so I switched it around - now you go to the side room first, then the ducts (featuring a new mancubus pit), and then the greatly-expanded sewers. In '96, it was just a tiny dark room with a tiny green brick ring on the floor. It needed some work to become the actually most interesting place in the map, not just the conceptually most interesting place. In line with what I said about ensuring a new area has in some way the same visual identity as the area it's replacing, I made the green brick ring huge and set a new fight on it. A worthwhile addition, I think!

 

Seems like nobody likes the final Hell Knight fight, which upon reexamination they're right to. I'll see about replacing it with something a bit different for the final release. In the original, the walls open up to reveal two HKs and two pinkies, and you have more room to move. I think a return to form is in order for this fight. :)

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MAP04 - “Sewers” by Jim Bagrow

doom02.png

 

Some tough encounters here, especially the opener and the room with 3 Viles. Thankfully, there is plenty of ammo and the Megasphere allows you to take some bad hits. The visuals are very abstract, even by 90s standards. It's less of a sewer and more like rooms with nukeage and surreal geometry, including a Hell area. I like the Caco fight in the X-shaped room but those 8 monsters in the teleport closet never showed up.

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Map04 ------------------------------
Keeping the quality from map03. Still continuing with making the maps bigger and harder each time which is pretty natural for the first maps. This map has on average better visuals than the last map and the combat got tougher here. Overall pretty good map.

The only small criticism I have for this map is that feels a bit incoherent, all over the place - I found the flow of the map weird with all the tiny passages between areas that make all rooms feel oddly disconnected and multiple paths to go to at every step. You don't even have to visit all areas to finish the map, which is not not inherently bad but it adds to the weirdness, This map has some hell-themed rooms which are cool but feel like they don't empathize themselves enough - there aren't some big or unique fights in them and they are over very soon. I think I also got a bug in this map - I was hearing arachnotrons walking behind one of the walls in the triple archvile room but after searching the whole map I couldn't find a new area that I maybe missed and I already found both secrets. It looked like they were supposed to teleport somewhere but got stuck.
 

Spoiler

From now on I won't add a spoiler comment when I played through the map with saves and don't think it'd be interesting to rebeat savelesswoof0063.png.1f44311be07dd255413ae6c134355ba9.png

 

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MAP 02: OUTPOST 27 (Woof!, -complevel 2, -pistolstart, UV w/ saves)

To put it bluntly, I’m not really a big fan of this map, sorry :\. It’s cramped, not enough space to move around in, and the fights feel more or less annoying. The singular arachnotron used here was a complete joke, a simple matter of shotgun blasting and closing the door when it fires for cover. I like that berserk was used in this map and made things just a bit more bearable, but ultimately it doesn’t save it from how cramped and unlikeable it is for me.

 

MAP 03: MARS BASE ALPHA (Woof!, -complevel 2, -pistolstart, UV w/ saves)

Now THIS is a better map to play, from the beginning of a hot start fight, to the hunt you go on for the 3 RBY keys scattered throughout the map. More traps and beginning to spring up here, but they’re really no sweat here since the 1st that I can think of is the fight where a passage lowers revealing a mancubus and it’s small amount of pinky friends that can be handled well w/ proper dodging and super shotgun blasting. The fight for the red key can also be declawed just as easily if you run back and let the monsters fight among themselves. Overall, much better than the previous map I played

 

I also haven’t commented on the new midis that were made for this: I just wanted to say that I’m enjoying it so far for these 3 that I listened so far. Idk if it’s weird for me to say that it vaguely reminds me of Donkey Kong Country’s OST from David Wise, now I know why Cammy used to call themselves before as CammyBanana lol. Hope they're willing to include the midis separated into a different .wad file in the zip file when it gets uploaded to idgames. Also enjoy this funny meat cleaver sprite I spotted while playing.

woof0001.png

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7 hours ago, Spectre01 said:

those 8 monsters in the teleport closet never showed up.

 

7 hours ago, Cilian said:

I think I also got a bug in this map - I was hearing arachnotrons walking behind one of the walls in the triple archvile room but after searching the whole map I couldn't find a new area that I maybe missed and I already found both secrets. It looked like they were supposed to teleport somewhere but got stuck.

 

Assuming you two are playing with RC1, which seems to still be linked in this thread's OP, you're going to want to switch to RC1.5, which you can download from this thread. It fixes this issue and several others later in the wad. Glad to hear you both enjoyed the map!

 

map04: Sewers is hands-down the most changed map in this megawad compared to '96, and aside from maybe 21 and 32, it's not even close. I really wish Jim Bagrow would have stuck around longer, learned from feedback, and laid down some more linedefs, because by pre-Hell Revealed standards he's unusually willing to throw you up against the wall. Maybe he could have been one of the early kings of slaughter - who knows?

 

Unfortunately, he got off to a very rough start. If you want the juicy details on this map's debut appearance, play it yourself or head to the July 2013 DWMegawad Club thread. It's a total bomb. It's baffling to me that Sewers '96 got put in the map04 slot (both for quality and difficulty reasons), and I have no doubt it's chased away many a prospective new player, especially in the modern day. There was just no way out but to give it a major makeover, and so what we have here is essentially a new map in the shape of the original. I won't go into hard specifics on a fight-by-fight basis, but as for progression, this is the first time you'll see RoC25 open up a linear '96 map and let you pick up its keys in any order you want. I'm not one of those people who instantly explodes at the sight of a linear level in a video game, but it's hard to deny the appeal of the open sandbox map, and a pretty solid number of this wad's levels ended up becoming distinctly non-linear. Of course, that made them way harder to test, but it is what it is.

 

Thankfully, Bagrow improves significantly after this map. He also made map14 and map16, neither of which needed nearly as much work. 14 is one of my favorites in the original wad, in fact. :)

 

I'm realizing just now that, in the first handful of maps, the extent of my reworks is playing a tennis match of extremes. Outpost 27 is borderline identical, Sewers was started almost from scratch. From here on out, it stabilizes to a pH neutral for the most part.

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Map03: Mars Base Alpha

Spoiler

When I first tried the anniversary version, I ended up having to use an editor to find the southwest secret, and I thought the switch for it was too well hidden. I thought, even if you're down in the nukage, you're very unlikely to be at a good angle/position to notice the switch texture. But on this playthrough I realized the difference in texture was clear enough when you were facing it while standing on the surrounding wall.

 

In my desperation to find that secret, I tried using the door to the other one as a lift, and in doing so found a texturing error:

taH62cS.png

Map04: Sewers

While I was playing through the original, I knew the remaster was somewhere on the horizon, and I was most curious about how Jim Bagrow's maps would be handled. I'm a little surprised a total overhaul was only necessary for the first of them, since I found myself disliking Map14 a lot more. But then I realized its problems were a lot easier to just correct. I think I'll get to them when we actually reach that day.

Edited by SiFi270

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MAP05 - “Mission Control” by Slava Pestov

 

Mid. Despite the enemy count, the combat here feels strangely one dimensional, mostly because it reuses the same hordes of imps and hitscanners all the goddamn time throughout its runtime, higher tier enemies feel like filler in the combat composition, being easily dispatched by infighting or just by poor trigger discipline. There are parts that straight up are bad design, like the leap of faith to get the blue key you just get rewarded by hitscanner nonsense and a damaging floor; or the arrows to signalize lifts or non-existent switches. This last part makes me suspect it is part of the remaster, since 90's wads are infamous for having switches and shit all over the place with no visual clue. If i'm right since i don't care how the original ROC was like, take into notice that don't preserve shit that fundamentally was bad design and try to patch it up with arrows. Yes, the arrows are 90's jank and fits the megawad, but if an entire map needed a complete overhaul this early into the wad, maybe things like that, which are more unambiguously bad design, also need a complete overhaul.

 

Other things i have to say, that pre boom elevator was kind of cute and a decent way to make progression not completely straight forward; and the mastermind section at the end was complete and utter filler that solves itself. Unmemorable and a bit of a letdown, but since this is a 90's wad is not like I had higher expectations anyway.

 

4/10

Edited by Cutman 999

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Map 04: Sewers

by Jim Bagrow & Cammy

 

This midi is definitely kind of different - sounds like something from a Rare platformer from the 90s, but the instrumentation definitely goes with the vibe.

 

Anyways, this isn't necessarily the most difficult map in the world, but these encounters are far more intimidating than we should be expecting in a Map 04. Cacodemons have a way of settling down from basically all the open areas, and while they aren't too terribly difficult to deal with, ground enemies that are usually pinkies also harass us determinedly. Also, Arachnotrons have a habit of firing from raised surfaces in basically any remotely large area, but at least there's normally places to hide. The exception being of course, the very last encounter where we've got to engage in some rather tricky target prioritzation. We tried targeting the Arachnotrons on the Baron's side but honestly, the other one might have worked just as well.

 

There's also the encounter with the three Arch-viles which we no doubt got fairly lucky here, but at the same time, there's plenty of places to conceal oneself. The silly switch puzzle was not hard to decipher.

 

One more note, the custom backpack graphics have made the item no longer a dog but some weird electronic whatchacallit. Best map so far easily!

 

 

 

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MAP04: Sewers by Jim Bagrow

 

The obligatory sewer map does not mess around. The hot start can be taken out through infighting (or a secret plasma rifle), then the map takes you underground. The place has this large scale, with arachnotrons in the distance and imps blocking your path. Corridors stuffed with zombies are a warm-up for the two setpiece fights, which, depending on your route, can be done in any order you want. The first one is a cacodemon attack that locks you in a sewage tank and gives enough rockets to handle them safely. The second is a basement with 3 archviles and some other monsters to distract you. After Ichinichi, I don't mind some actual aggression.

 

I don't know if that's a bug or I messed up, but there are some enemies (pinkies and arachnotrons) that didn't teleport out of their room. Never mind, I've been playing the earlier version of the wad.
 

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Map 04 : Sewers

 

Quote

vceqFXu.pngkTVrZIG.png

 

 

If you want a scale to measure how crappy the fourth map was in the original version, it's as if Cammy were a video game company trying to make the "Superman 64" game decent.

 

Ugly, too dark and, above all, unfair when it comes to the arch-vile you meet after the elevator, Jim Bagrow's first playable map is nothing more than a wart that hurts your foot. I really wonder how this map was accepted into the project. I'm willing to believe that the standards weren't that high, but there are limits. It's really rubbish.

 

Now, I can only applaud Cammy for improving a map like this to do justice to the basic idea of venturing into sewers, which, while not exceptional, has potential. And honestly, that's what I really like about this remaster: the art of reworking mediocre maps to make them more acceptable by today's standards. Turning shit into gold should be the primary goal of a remaster, whether in Doom or in other games.

 

Nonetheless, I think it's interesting that the spike in difficulty has been retained, as it's now possible to protect yourself from viles thanks to solid walls.

 

Grade : D- (4/20)  - Old version

Grade : B (13/20) - New version

 

Spoiler

 

 

 

Edited by Roofi

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MAP04 (UV, PS, Saveless)
Hot damn, what a map! Sure, it's ugly but the fights are satisfying. The 3-Archvile room had me back off (only to realize I was locked in there with them) and almost killed me. There is enough cover but the goal is to KEEP THE VILES IN THE CENTER. Then, the fight with the Cacos on the cross-bridge was a great exercise in space management. Most of the map's monster count is Zombie padding in the hallways cnnecting the various rooms, but hey, killing fodder is fun. Great work.


Really digging the SSG blue firing graphic, love how it moves into yellow and then white. That does not make sense physics-wise (blue is hotter than white or yellow) but that's a minor nitpick.

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MAP04 - “Sewers” by Jim Bagrow

 

Well have fun with this review, I am not sure whether I was in a bad place or whether this map previously sucked...

Spoiler

Oh man this was bad.

 Inconsistent use of damage sectors check, map near enough impossible without finding secrets at start check. So this was going to be fun **

Most of the areas are bland, randomly shaped and textured poorly, the texture theme is all over the place too with horrendous clashing. Still this would have been redeemable with good gameplay.

RANDOM BULLSHIT ARCHVILE ROOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Seriously this room is just plain unfair. The main problem isn't the mancubi or the archvile. It's the spectres, they block, they seem to have the ability to allow projectiles to clip through them, trapping you and making you eat a fireball. I skipped this fight only to my horror to discover I had to go through it a second time with extra monsters. :/

The slimefall area has about a dozen monsters which serve no purpose whatsoever. I ran out of ammo and tried to chainsaw an arachnotron to death and failed miserably.

All in all this map was dreadful. No beating round the bush.

Looked at the start of map05. Oh man :P

Okay it really did suck and would probably have received an F.

 

So what about the remaster? Well lets be honest the map is still a incoherent mess both in terms of layout and thematic, that said some gameplay adjustments turning this from a horrible nightmare into something that actually plays okay. The start is infight fodder, the following few rooms are a little procedural but the triple archvile basement fight has a real zing to it. It isn't that hard to survive but the sheer panic induced by seeing this is quite a rush. I must add that the hub also offers a couple of fun encounters.

In the end, this still isn't a particularly good map, but it has its highlights which certainly put it above Map02 for instance. It still feels very mid-90s garbage, but it is quite fun garbage overall.

Edit - I should add that I applaud Cammy for trying to keep an element of nostalgia to these maps, this map has had a major overhaul but tries to key some of the more questionable elements intact to preserve some level of authenticity from the original work. 

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Map05----------------------------------
The visual style of this map is very similar to map01, it's probably made by the same person (I don't remember and too lazy to check..), and it almost feels like a sequel to map01 except it doesn't try too hard to be an early map. It gives you bigger guns and biggers baddies to blow up with a bit more difficult combat, but not as hard as the last two maps. It's also obviously bigger than map01 and has some adventure in it with you fetching keys from different areas which it manages to do in a way that feels more coherent than map04's attempt at doing that.

It still has the things I didn't like about map01 though, the combat feels filler-y again. There's a really funny monster in this map, it's a pinkie standing on top of a crate, it can't reach you, and it's harmless unless you get too close or set it free which you have no reason to do. Just looking at that pinky I'm thinking "Why?". It's hard to argue that the pinkie is doing anything other than prolonging the map. Barely threatening imps on ledges are something this map does a lot too which is not as silly as a pinky on a crate but noticeable. There are a couple brief interesting or satisfying moments of the map but it's not the majority. The other thing is that visually it didn't improve from map01, both are passable-but-not-amazing.

 

Spoiler

By the way I also want to say I hope I don't sound too negative about these maps. Only a second time I'm reviewing maps ever, I'm trying to speak my mind but I can't tell if I'm overdoing it pulling out criticism out of nowhere or not.

Blind, one death and one accidental restart.woof0065.png.c815acbb711c0ffda150b0c787ab3cc1.png

 

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MAP01


Playing in Chocolate Doom, despite whatever tuneups the levels have had, the art direction on the new graphics looks extremely 90s (so much blue!) and since the update is still vanilla-compatible I thought it'd be fun to go this route.

 

The level itself is a decent first map, nothing likely to give anyone too much trouble unless you really hate hitscanners. The pentagram at the end is a very nice, ominous visual detail, even if it is just some busywork before being able to end the map.

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MAP05 - “Mission Control” by Slava Pestov

doom01.png

 

Interesting start with the group of Sergeants and barrels. Good thing there's a Berserk right after because I was at 30% HP from that fight, since I didn't get the crate secret right away. Similar to the previous map, there is a lot of low-tier fodder to mow down with the Chaingun. It would've been nice to get the RL earlier against the mid-tiers, since there isn't much left to kill once you get it before the Mastermind. The boss itself doesn't do much stuck on that platform, and killing it is peaking with the SSG from behind a pillar. Not a big fan of the visuals or layout in this one. The walls are usually the same pipe or Startan texture across the entire room and geometry is minimal.

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MAP05: Mission Control by Slava Pestov

 

From the moment you load the map, you'll notice Mission Control employs a lot of basic monsters - all three types of former humans and imps. It kinda reaches a point of absurdity, but whatever, killing them with SSG is as fun as ever. Those hordes, reinforced by some cacodemons and hell knights, are your main opponents on your mission to obtain the three keys. 

 

The ending has you fight a mastermind, but there's enough rockets, cover and distraction to make this a non-threat. In the end, this was a fun map, though with this spoonful of excess I've come to associate with more inexperienced mappers.

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MAP05 (UV, PS, Saveless)
Again, a rockin MIDI. The map is visually 90s, and the fights are as well - but in a good way. Gluts of hitscanners, some heavies mixed in to heighten the tension. The large hitscanner horde in the YK area was ridiculous but also very fun. Very good map.

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Map05: Mission Control

So the western area of this map contains a subtle arrow like the one I felt Map01 should have had, at least until Cammy made an excellent case for leaving things like that as they are. If not for that case, I probably would have suggested removing this map's arrow entirely and putting an actual switch texture on the wall it pointed to. But no, that sort of thing should absolutely be retained and celebrated.

 

EDIT: I feel like this came across as sarcastic and/or passive aggressive? I swear that's not what I'm going for.

Edited by SiFi270

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MAP04: Sewers

Spoiler

UV | Pistol start | No saves

K: 89% | I: 100% | S: 0%

The map starts off with another small shock to the system, throwing two small but still intimidating waves of monsters at you; making the waves infight definitely helps though. The stairs in the following sludge section were somewhat annoying to traverse unless I had my automap on at all times to see where the stairs were, though it's here you're given a rocket launcher (although a ton of ammo until later on at least) and (if you can walk a tightrope in Doom) a megasphere. From here, looking at the map there seems to be multiple ways to approach it which I like. I was scared I accidentally somehow softlocked myself into the crossbridge cacodemon ambush room, but then the doors opened so I think I was worrying about nothing. Taking the elevator down to the yellow key fight and seeing the arch-viles lined up made me a deer in headlights, but the surrounding explosive barrels plus the RK from earlier helps a lot; in fact, RK is pretty useful once you nab the rocket boxes sitting at the crossbridge. One final big thing to note was the second crossbridge ambush, which even with a megasphere left me dancing with death a little bit; you have relatively few directions to dodge into while taking fire from all around you. Other than that, this map had a lot of zombiemen to mow down with the chaingun.

 

MAP05: Mission Control

Spoiler

 

UV | Pistol start | No saves

K: 100% | I: 100% | S: 100%

Starting off behind a horde of shotgunners sitting next to a barrel was definitely intimidating, but the easily-accessible backpack and shotgun secret to the right helped; also, the MIDI starts off pretty ominous but then it suddenly goes kinda hard. The chaingunners hiding behind corners was pretty nasty but manageable. The crate-running sequence was not too different from the one in MAP01, although it was telegraphed by an arrow pointing to a wall switch this time. Going outside to see the continued theme of a lot of zombiemen was a bit scary, but again it's nothing a chaingun can't mow down; afterwards, getting teleported into a hallway of pinkies was scary at first, but they seemed unable to get into the little alcove into the elevator so it was easy to deal with them by camping. The spider mastermind accompanied by arachnotrons on a MAP05 was surprising, and I probably didn't do the best method of killing since I just killed the fodder and spammed rockets at it while continuously ducking behind the pillars as cover. I think the blue key room on the second floor confused me the most since I didn't want to fall into a death pit (which it technically is but not really) so I saved that part for last but got close to dying. Other than that, the secrets were also pretty nice and easy shots of dopamine.

 

 

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Map 05 : Mission Control

 

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The Spider Mastermind now has the home it deserves, with a more imposing and, above all, less bland architecture. The latter is also more striking, as the original version was far too simple to skip. The new zone has now a purpose.

 

Nevertheless, I'm a little disappointed that Cammy did just some little cosmectic touches in the blue key section, as I find it still uninteresting and, above all, unintuitive in both versions.


It's quite amusing, but in the end, the fight I remember most is simply that strange gathering of shotgunners at the very beginning of the map. They destroyed me at the start, because I'd forgotten that you could lower the crates to get the SG.

 

In short, there are noticeable improvements, but Cammy should have gone further about the quest to the blue key, I think. That part remains the weakest section of the map to me.

 

Grade : B- (12/20) - old version

Grade : B (13/20) - new version

 

Spoiler

 

 

 

 

 

 

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