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Insane_Gazebo

Sunder - Map17 is here!

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Found the error on 7. Hit some sort of limit of too much map space used apparently (at first I thought it might be sectors that were too tall but I guess that doesn't matter for this map at least). If you highlight the entire map and scale 50% it should work (reduces map space). But another way to keep it at 100% is to move the bottom single sided line up until its 8 pixels away from the line above. Similarly move the top and right lines inward too. Now the entire map still takes up too much space because the dummy sectors are far away. So you can move them really close mashed up against the bottom (in a horizontal row so they're flatter). I don't know much doom technical stuff but that worked for me anyway (stopped producing prboom errors).

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Catoptromancy said:

MORE


More?! More what!?

gggmork said:

Found the error on 7. Hit some sort of limit of too much map space used apparently (at first I thought it might be sectors that were too tall but I guess that doesn't matter for this map at least). If you highlight the entire map and scale 50% it should work (reduces map space). But another way to keep it at 100% is to move the bottom single sided line up until its 8 pixels away from the line above. Similarly move the top and right lines inward too. Now the entire map still takes up too much space because the dummy sectors are far away. So you can move them really close mashed up against the bottom (in a horizontal row so they're flatter). I don't know much doom technical stuff but that worked for me anyway (stopped producing prboom errors).


Wow, thanks gggmork.

Of course, now Doom Builder refuses to build the map nodes. (I get an error now. Might be something in the new node builder that comes with the latest version of Doom Builder 2?)
Did the version you ran in PrBoom have a decent frame rate in Zdoom, though? (That error might be unrelated to the performance issue.)

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I just played some of your wad, and I really like it. There are a lot of areas throughout that are highly inspired and well-crafted. You have taken the core Doom classic style and expanded on it to a massive extent, and also in a way that I really appreciate. I'm bored with the old doom maps. This is something infinitely more elaborate and powerful, making colossal demands on the player as he traverses the sprawling environment. The music is excellent.

The map that sticks out the most to me is Map05. You really have an imagination for huge-scale locales. And taking one look at the screenshot for map 7 has me going with all sorts of ideas. One could imagine hordes of cyberdemons lining the ramparts. It reminds me a lot of the architecture described in Lovecraft's Call of Cthulhu. That is, alien, surreal, impossible structures.

It would definitely not be a waste of time to go back and refine these maps to perfection - you would have a real treasure.

btw, "Macabre" is misspelled "Macarbe" on the title screen.

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When I dropped your wad in prboomplus (not using doombuilder) map 7 played but really slow.
Then I opened in doombuilder 1 to test. It 'couldn't build the nodes' (because map 7 was messed up), but it loaded the wad in prboom anyway (via test inside doombuilder, starting on map 1). In that test I could idclev to any map, except when I idcleved to 7 it would crash, so suspected something on 7 was a problem.
I tried various things like highlighting the entire map and making all sectors floor=0, ceiling=64: still messed up, removing all things: still messed up, merging all sectors: still. Shrink 75%, still.

Shrink 50% = fixed and normal frame rate (that apparently made it under whatever map-space limitation there is, if there even is one which I assume). So I just tried to reduce the map size without having to shrink anything as described above and that worked, normal frame rate too (in prboomplus, didn't test in zdoom). It also seemed to build the nodes fine but I didn't save it.

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Reaper978 said:

It reminds me a lot of the architecture described in Lovecraft's Call of Cthulhu. That is, alien, surreal, impossible structures.

It would definitely not be a waste of time to go back and refine these maps to perfection - you would have a real treasure.


I must admit, one of the reasons I've taken to mapping for Doom is how well it lends itself really well to abstract architecture.
As for the maps, I think I'll just upload them with my current wad as 'scrapped' levels, alongside the current wad, once it's finally finished.

And as for the (new) Map05... sadly, it plays like crap right now, and needs a good chunk re-designed. I had yet to discover how little fun it was to fight monsters getting stuck on stairs! (And, sadly, I had taken a break from mapping half-way through making it.. and after getting back to it, I decided to start detailing, without testing. Whoops.)

btw, "Macabre" is misspelled "Macarbe" on the title screen.


Son of a bitch! I must have stared at that title screen for a few months without noticing that.


And gggmork - could you possibly take a screenshot of what you did? I cannot figure out what you did, and I'd like to finish that map.

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Wow. Just... wow.
I've seen some big levels, but map07 is colossal! Unless you're using scaled-down textures, the outer walls alone must be 1500 units high!... It's a rare talent, being able to make areas that big look good in Doom.

Just out of interest, how many levels are you planning to make for this set? Personally, given their size and the insanely violent gameplay, I'm not sure if I could stomach more than about 10 or 15.

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kaplanator said:

Wow. Just... wow.
I've seen some big levels, but map07 is colossal! Unless you're using scaled-down textures, the outer walls alone must be 1500 units high!... It's a rare talent, being able to make areas that big look good in Doom.

Just out of interest, how many levels are you planning to make for this set? Personally, given their size and the insanely violent gameplay, I'm not sure if I could stomach more than about 10 or 15.


If only that map worked at an acceptable frame rate in any other port other than glBoom-Plus, and that I'd completed more of it than this before it became unplayable:

http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/6052/sundermap07map.jpg

As you can see, I only got one corner of the bottom level done. Not totally sure how to resize it/make it playable, but I'll certainly get back to it when the other maps are looking finished.

As for how many, I'm considering releasing about 10 or so maps, then another 10 (almost episodes, I guess), until I have a megawad, or I simply feel the set is finished.

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What nodebuilder are you using for these? If you're using zdbsp, try zennode for map07, though I guess it might simply be a matter of the map being too huge like gggmork said. Still, worth trying.

Also, if you're going to end up with NUTS-like monster counts, limiting the wad to glboom+ isn't such a bad idea (if you can run prboom+ you can almost always run glboom+, and those are the only "good" ports for NUTS-like maps at the moment).

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Holy crap! May I test this WAD? I'd love to go through these levels for the architecture alone.

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Just completed the first level, Python, on UV. I loved it all the way through. The fights weren't unfair, even for someone who isn't used to slaughtermaps. I died a lot, of course, but with some trial and error I managed to complete the level. The only thing you might want to fix is that I ran out of ammo during the final fight and had to leave two archviles and the monsters they resurrected alive. Nothing big, just maybe a box of shells somewhere in the main building that's only accessible after pulling the switch in the smaller building. Other than that, nothing needs any tweaking in that map in my opinion.

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Solarn said:

Just completed the first level, Python, on UV. I loved it all the way through. The fights weren't unfair, even for someone who isn't used to slaughtermaps. I died a lot, of course, but with some trial and error I managed to complete the level. The only thing you might want to fix is that I ran out of ammo during the final fight and had to leave two archviles and the monsters they resurrected alive. Nothing big, just maybe a box of shells somewhere in the main building that's only accessible after pulling the switch in the smaller building. Other than that, nothing needs any tweaking in that map in my opinion.


Did you get all the shells in the smaller building? There's 80 shells there, and 40 on the front steps, plus the 30+ rockets as well. Or did you get trapped inside, and then run out?

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I like map 1 a lot from the old wad you posted at the beginning of this thread. I managed to get through it on the easiest difficulty (still pretty damn hard). I really like the style you had there. And the music is absolutely perfect.

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Insane_Gazebo said:

Did you get all the shells in the smaller building? There's 80 shells there, and 40 on the front steps, plus the 30+ rockets as well. Or did you get trapped inside, and then run out?

I got all the shells and even went back for more when I ran out the first time. I admit that I don't have perfect aim and reflexes, so I tend to waste a certain amount of ammo when fighting, but I think the difficulty of the level should be about the hordes of monsters and lack of health, not the lack of ammo.

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Okay, some feedback on the other maps.

The Burrow was just as fun as Python, with no ammo issues this time. Maybe I'm just getting better at conserving it. No changes needed. This was actually the first time that I had fun fighting a Cyberdemon. I usually run for my life when I see them as I'm not very good at dodging.

I'm currently playing Grinder and I'm confident that I'll be able to complete it, but it's a very steep rise in difficulty from the first two levels. It's absolutely packed with monsters and unlike Python and The Burrow, where they teleport in or come out of monster closets when I'm ready, they're all there at the start, meaning that I don't really have time to rest and look for health or ammo. I utilized infighting a lot more than in the previous levels. Also, some of the passages are too narrow for the amount of monsters I need to fight in them. You should probably lower the number of monsters in the map or distribute them less evenly, with more and more appearing as the player progresses. There's absolutely no need for that horde of imps, Knights and Barons to be present right at the start.

Pale Monument is one of my favourite in the bunch, architecture-wise, as it's simply breathtaking, but nuts.wad with amazing architecture is still nuts.wad. The amount of monsters in this one is ridiculous. The first two levels were insanely hard but fair and the third was unfair but fun. This is just plain unfair. I IDDQD'd through it after dying in the first area a billion times without any progress. I'm sure that I'd be able to play through it without cheats after a few days of practice, but it still wouldn't be fun. Please cut the number of monsters at least in half.

The Cage is absolutely amazing and actually a breath of fresh air after the last two levels. There's still an insane amount of monsters, but they never swarmed me like they did in the previous two levels, with no escape route. I had a ton of fun playing it.

I actually couldn't find my way out of the first room of The Dreaming Garden and prboom+ terminated with some message I don't remember, so I can't give any opinions on it yet. Maybe a little less Knights right in the first room would be better.

I haven't played the last two levels yet, so I can't say anything about them.

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Solarn said:

Okay, some feedback on the other maps.

The Burrow was just as fun as Python, with no ammo issues this time. Maybe I'm just getting better at conserving it. No changes needed. This was actually the first time that I had fun fighting a Cyberdemon. I usually run for my life when I see them as I'm not very good at dodging.

I'm currently playing Grinder and I'm confident that I'll be able to complete it, but it's a very steep rise in difficulty from the first two levels. It's absolutely packed with monsters and unlike Python and The Burrow, where they teleport in or come out of monster closets when I'm ready, they're all there at the start, meaning that I don't really have time to rest and look for health or ammo. I utilized infighting a lot more than in the previous levels. Also, some of the passages are too narrow for the amount of monsters I need to fight in them. You should probably lower the number of monsters in the map or distribute them less evenly, with more and more appearing as the player progresses. There's absolutely no need for that horde of imps, Knights and Barons to be present right at the start.

Pale Monument is one of my favourite in the bunch, architecture-wise, as it's simply breathtaking, but nuts.wad with amazing architecture is still nuts.wad. The amount of monsters in this one is ridiculous. The first two levels were insanely hard but fair and the third was unfair but fun. This is just plain unfair. I IDDQD'd through it after dying in the first area a billion times without any progress. I'm sure that I'd be able to play through it without cheats after a few days of practice, but it still wouldn't be fun. Please cut the number of monsters at least in half.

The Cage is absolutely amazing and actually a breath of fresh air after the last two levels. There's still an insane amount of monsters, but they never swarmed me like they did in the previous two levels, with no escape route. I had a ton of fun playing it.

I actually couldn't find my way out of the first room of The Dreaming Garden and prboom+ terminated with some message I don't remember, so I can't give any opinions on it yet. Maybe a little less Knights right in the first room would be better.

I haven't played the last two levels yet, so I can't say anything about them.


Don't worry about Grinder for the most part - I'm not very happy with it. I'm not sure it's a keeper. (Wait until you get to the last room :P Even gggmork had trouble figuring out how to get past it.)

As I said in the PM, Pale Monument isn't finished for that exact reason. I mean, it can be finished, and was in fact actually harder at one point than the version you played initially. (Seriously!)
But mostly, I don't feel it's the amount of monsters which is the problem - just mostly their placing, and how you're forced to fight them.

However, there is a strategy to get past the first room which is the hardest part, which I'll be tweaking.
You're supposed to start by using the Cyberdemon to the right to create infighting, dodge past him, grab the Soulsphere, wait a moment, then clear a path behind one of the main pillars to grab some ammo and cover. Then repeat with the other pillar.
You then need to watch for the little arches in the first room - they trigger arch viles back at the start which one needs to deal with. (I think I'll delay that part - get them to come in later.)

Though, there is one part I won't be changing, and that's the caco-demon room. The whole point to that, is that there *is* too many to fight. That's why:
a) The BFG Room opens back at the start.
b) You get a teleporter back across the map.

Still, if you have any ideas how to use the rooms that are there to create some interesting fights, go ahead.
Regardless though, the monster placement needs some work. :)

As for The Cage, I'm actually surprised you enjoyed it. I felt it was worse than Pale Monument in that regard. Interesting. (gggmork kept falling off the edges, getting stuck and dying.)

As for The Garden, I guess I better move that switch. I would have thought an arrow on the mini-map might give it away, but so far the only player to find it without trouble was gggmork. (Seriously open up your map in the first room and zoom in, hehe.)

Anyway, thanks for the feedback so far Solarn :)

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Insane_Gazebo said:

Don't worry about Grinder for the most part - I'm not very happy with it. I'm not sure it's a keeper. (Wait until you get to the last room :P Even gggmork had trouble figuring out how to get past it.)

As I said in the PM, Pale Monument isn't finished for that exact reason. I mean, it can be finished, and was in fact actually harder at one point than the version you played initially. (Seriously!)
But mostly, I don't feel it's the amount of monsters which is the problem - just mostly their placing, and how you're forced to fight them.

However, there is a strategy to get past the first room which is the hardest part, which I'll be tweaking.
You're supposed to start by using the Cyberdemon to the right to create infighting, dodge past him, grab the Soulsphere, wait a moment, then clear a path behind one of the main pillars to grab some ammo and cover. Then repeat with the other pillar.
You then need to watch for the little arches in the first room - they trigger arch viles back at the start which one needs to deal with. (I think I'll delay that part - get them to come in later.)

Though, there is one part I won't be changing, and that's the caco-demon room. The whole point to that, is that there *is* too many to fight. That's why:
a) The BFG Room opens back at the start.
b) You get a teleporter back across the map.

Still, if you have any ideas how to use the rooms that are there to create some interesting fights, go ahead.
Regardless though, the monster placement needs some work. :)

As for The Cage, I'm actually surprised you enjoyed it. I felt it was worse than Pale Monument in that regard. Interesting. (gggmork kept falling off the edges, getting stuck and dying.)

As for The Garden, I guess I better move that switch. I would have thought an arrow on the mini-map might give it away, but so far the only player to find it without trouble was gggmork. (Seriously open up your map in the first room and zoom in, hehe.)

Anyway, thanks for the feedback so far Solarn :)

Please keep Grinder. It looks great even if it's really hard. You have an amazing sense of design.

I don't really have any ideas for Pale Monument, other than that fewer more powerful monsters might work better in some areas. I kept getting stuck in a sea of imps and revenants that I simply couldn't avoid. Also, the fight with the two arch-viles (I think it's after the two cyberdemons and the knights) actually seemed a bit of a letdown. They were in a medium-sized open space with no access to any of the casualties from the previous fights, so it was basically a matter of dodging their flames. In this WAD, that was actually too easy. One vile with easier access to the corpses might work better. Also, dear god the cacodemon room. It will haunt my dreams.

The main difference between The Cage and the previous two levels is in the pacing at the start. Pale Monument and Grinder both started me off facing a horde of powerful monsters, while The Cage has a band of demons and a deaf arch-vile a bit further along the way. I had no trouble disposing of them and afterwards, it was simply a matter of finding cover from the following waves and decimating them. I fell off several times, but it's avoidable with some practice.

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Another small update.

Another screenshot added. (Map08)

In terms of what's finished, here's where I am:

Another map finished, minus testing. (Map08.)

That's Map01, Map02, Map03, Map06, Map08 and Map09 finished. (Assuming any further testing doesn't reveal any problems.)

Map04 and Map05 are 80% - 90% finished. (Need some item/monster/layout tweaks.)

Map07 and Map10 are 10%, maybe 20% done.

Once I have 10 Maps finished, I figured I'll release it as 'Part I' of a potential megawad.

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Sorry, I've been slacking off with the testing. In my defense, I was away for three weeks, only coming home for the weekends and I wanted to rest.

A small update nonetheless: Grinder is still both extremely frustrating and extremely fun. I have no idea how to kill the monsters in the room where there were originally a bunch of imps and new monsters start warping in after I get up to the ledge. I just run and hope I don't get stuck on anything. A lucky archvile jump during this put me right in front of the last room, bypassing the duel with a cyber and a vile in the small room completely. You might want to fix that. I'm currently trying to figure out how to survive the last room. I've already got a plan, but I keep getting stuck at the worst possible moments.

You know, I can't help thinking that a good slaughtermap is in fact a well-disguised puzzle map. The player is put in one deadly situation after the other where simply charging in weapons blazing won't help and he must figure out the way to survive it. I see this in all of the maps you labeled "finished" in your last post, Gazebo, and I love it.

On an unrelated note, either the exit room in the version of Map08 (Metal Descendants) I have is bugged or I'm missing something.

Also, would you believe that I'm already thinking of making a tribute WAD to Sunder? It's that awesome.

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This wad is way too hard for me... Which means I keep trying, and love every second of it. Fun times. :)

Map05 turns from insanely hard to super easy on Pacifist, though. I thought that might not be intended, so here's a demo (direct link) to show what I'm talking about ; it's a GZDoom 1.2.1.309 demo, I tried PrBOOM+ but it gave me an error message ("I_SignalHandler: Exiting on signal: signal 11") when loading the wad.

*Edit : I didn't get these maps are old ones you don't intend to update. My bad.

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Ah, then welcome back :)

On Grinder's final room:

Spoiler

To beat that last room in Grinder, is tricky. Very tricky.
Basically, you need to run for the invul. at the back of the room first, and rocket your way to the second one. Wait until the first is about to wear off, then grab the second. Then, and this is the part that will make or break you - get close to the teleporter in the room. Let as many of those buggers get as close to you as you can. Then, hopefully, when your invul wear's off, you can jump in, and hopefully make your way to the megasphere. Now, if everything's gone right, the cyberdemon's have killed enough for you to now have some room to dodge/move, so you should be able to finish off the cybie's.

And I think you're beginning to understand why I love slaughter maps :D

As for Map08, it's not bugged - it's just that the three switches are difficult to find. Even gggmork asked me if the map was bugged. I think I'll put some big bright lights over them or something.

And on that note, I moved the Map06 switch into an easier to find spot that people had trouble finding. (In the first room.)

And I look forward to your... tribute :)

Solarn said:

Sorry, I've been slacking off with the testing. In my defense, I was away for three weeks, only coming home for the weekends and I wanted to rest.

A small update nonetheless: Grinder is still both extremely frustrating and extremely fun. I have no idea how to kill the monsters in the room where there were originally a bunch of imps and new monsters start warping in after I get up to the ledge. I just run and hope I don't get stuck on anything. A lucky archvile jump during this put me right in front of the last room, bypassing the duel with a cyber and a vile in the small room completely. You might want to fix that. I'm currently trying to figure out how to survive the last room. I've already got a plan, but I keep getting stuck at the worst possible moments.

You know, I can't help thinking that a good slaughtermap is in fact a well-disguised puzzle map. The player is put in one deadly situation after the other where simply charging in weapons blazing won't help and he must figure out the way to survive it. I see this in all of the maps you labeled "finished" in your last post, Gazebo, and I love it.

On an unrelated note, either the exit room in the version of Map08 (Metal Descendants) I have is bugged or I'm missing something.

Also, would you believe that I'm already thinking of making a tribute WAD to Sunder? It's that awesome.

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I played the new maps a bit, so far it's been a very enjoyable experience. Here's my thoughts :

Map01 - perfect starter map. It's not too rough, but still challenging, and quite fun. While it is a bit easy to hide near the first switch and keep monsters on the lower floor, I don't see this as a terrible thing. The cybie + archviles ambush made short work of me, great one.

Pet peeve : it's possible for the archviles to send the player through the windows in ZDoom-based ports, ending up outside with no way to get back in. It didn't happen in PrBOOM+, though, so I'm guessing AV jumps are higher in ZDoom ports ?

Seeing as there's only 4 or 5 cacodemons and no pain elemental IIRC, I don't think it'd hurt to set the lines of these windows as impassable.

Map02 - it was alright, maybe a bit too easy to skip the first mobs and run to the hellknight room.

By the way, in PrBOOM+ the "S1 Open Stay" switch failed me by opening the door... then closing it, leaving me stuck inside. I don't know what was up with that.

Map03 - not much health. Of course, having more health might make it too easy to bypass sections of the map with AV jumps.

In fact, it's exactly what happened to me in the last room. I picked the invul sphere and a megasphere, ran to the little lava platform and let an archvile propel me to the exit. Rather easy and anticlimatic.

The spidermastermind close to the starting point was stuck in PrBOOM+ and wouldn't attack. It attacked just fine in GZDoom.

Map04 - I didn't like the layout, so skipped it. This isn't to say it's bad or anything, I'm completely subjective here. Also, the map lagged GZDoom to ~20ish FPS and I suck so much in other ports I'm reluctant to use anything else for such a hard map.

Map05 - wow, it's even better than the previous version. A Pacifist route without waking up monsters still seems possible, at first glance - although much harder than before. With all the switchhunts and tough fights, this map feels like the bastard child of HR and Eternal Doom.

I got a HOM on linedef 10867. Looking at it in Doom Builder, it looks like there's two different linedefs at that spot.

Close to that, sectors 306 to 317 and 1053 to 1064 were damaging sectors like lava, despite being normal floor sectors. Sectors 35, 38, 39 are also damaging, but as once you fall on these you're screwed anyway I guess it might be intentional.

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Phml said:

Awesome feedback.


Wow, thanks! This is certainly some of the most useful feedback I've had so far :)

Map01 - Fixed the windows.

Map02 - It does feel like it ends a little soon, doesn't it? I think it needs a little extra something to feel complete.
Also, the reason that S1 Door Open stay didn't work, is because when you ran over the line that was supposed to close the door, it hadn't fully opened, so it didn't trigger properly. I just need to redesign that room a bit.

Map03 - That guy gut stuck again? Grr. Well, I made the room slightly larger (again!), and he seems to move around fine in PrBoom now.

Map04 - FPS issues? Weird. I get at least 50FPS on that map. It's Map05, which has some performance issues - the opening scene on the lift can slow it down to almost 20FPS on my machine, and my machine is by no means crappy.

The issues on Map05 - thanks. I'd forgotten about those sectors set to damamge the player, when they shouldn't have been. In fact, it wasn't just the sectors you mentioned, it was the entire staircase. (I also fixed that unclosed sector.)

Thanks so much for the feedback. If I'm lucky, maybe I can release this bug free! (Yeah, right.)

Edit - Forgot to mention, the reason you were probably confused as where to go on Map05, was due to a switch I broke ages ago - and a certain platform not lowering, allowing you to continue. (I have tried to set up teleporters and so on, to make it obvious where to go. Lets hope players don't get too lost... (They will!))

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I've finally completed Map03. It was fun. I skipped Map04 for now because I still die every time I try to do anything in the first room and now I'm on Map05. Feedback on that coming soon.

As for Map03, don't change anything (except maybe that stuck spiderdemon). It's perfect as it is. I had tons of fun playing it and the only part I needed any help for was the last room.

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