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Bloodshedder

The /newstuff Chronicles #344

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  • DARK PLACES (for DOOM v1.666+) - Martin Klauz
    doom2.exe - Deathmatch - 25574 bytes - (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    A recreation of Quake's DM6 map (the one with all the teleporters) for Doom. It doesn't look as good as the Quake version, and some of the secrets have been moved around/changed/removed due to Doom's 2-1/2 dimension engine, but it's fine for a quick blast-through with your friends.

  • CASTLES OF DEATH (for DOOM v1.666+) - Martin Klauz
    doom2.exe - Solo Play - 41384 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    Two small, symmetrical castles face each other; your objective is to get from inside one to inside the other. The only thing standing in your way is 91 monsters, including a Cyberdemon, two Archviles, some Mancubuses, a scattering of Cacodemons and Pain Elementals, and plenty of zombiemen, former sergeants, and chaingunners. Oh yeah, and SS Soldiers. It's not nearly as fun as it sounds; there's nothing to do except splatter monsters everywhere and dodge attacks that come from all sides. The map's not ugly but it's nothing special either. Not awful, but certainly not a keeper.

  • Avoid - Tvarr
    doom2.exe - Solo Play - 185289 bytes - (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    You fight a bunch of monsters, including Spider Masterminds, Mancubuses, Archviles, Barons, etc. in a big open canyon-place and a series of really dark, underground caves. Gameplay is not very fun in either place; either monsters are sniping at you from a distance, or Archviles are toasting you from behind legions of other monsters, or you're searching desperately for ammo as Barons claw at your back, or you just can't see where the fuck you're going, and the maps aren't pretty either. At least the wad is appropriately titled.

  • ZCyberSweeper 2 - Isle
    ZDoom - Solo Play - 416001 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: TheeXile
    Wow! This is some quality scripting!

    That's about all it is, though. You won't find much of a Doom map here, unless you happen to enjoy killing lots of Cyberdemons with a pistol. :P

    Hmm. I'm not completely sure how to approach making a review for this. Any review of this map for its gameplay qualities would be basically a review of Minesweeper itself, which I could assume you should probably already have your opinion about. Therefore, I'll simply make as objective an overview as I can of the qualities and issues of the map itself.

    Qualities:
    1. About the same as Eternal Doom variation (which this is apparently inspired by), save for the textures and with added functionality via scripting. Though unlike the ED version, you aren't really given a good way to fight back against any Cyberdemons you uncover. Edit: Apparently I'm not even sure if you're able to continue after you've uncovered a Cyberdemon since it appears square marking is disabled thereafter. Glitch?
    2. An overlay of the map's mine squares that appears over the player's main view REALLY helps with keeping track of the game! R-click toggles a corner-only small view of the map, a full-size transparent view over the middle of the screen, or simply hides it altogether. This makes it a LOT more convenient to play, and even makes it look and feel like the actual pre-Vista Minesweeper game!
    3. Playing the game in 3d adds a whole new dimension of challenge to wrap your brain around (literally and figuratively). I found it fun. There's nothing quite like squealing like a bitch the first time a Cyberdemon says hello with a rocket to my face. :P
    4. True to the original game.
    Issues:
    1. Occasional glitches with the full-view overlay that causes it (or at least portions of it) to disappear. Fixable by re-toggling the view.
    2. A bit disorienting at first, even if you're already skilled at the game. If you're not skilled, well, I hope you enjoy Cyberdemon battles. :P
    3. You definitely won't be able to play this as fast or efficiently as you would with Windows Minesweeper. Though that may or may not be a bad thing, really.
    4. Somewhat oddball controls. It's difficult enough wrapping my brain around the 3d aspect, but now I have to reprogram my motor memory away from what I'm used to. L-click marks the square that you're aiming it, r-click toggles the overlay view, and Use reveals the square nearby right in front of you. I died a few times just trying to get my mind around which function was which.
    5. Kinda wished I could have had some high powered weapons from the onset in the case that I did screw up and uncover a Cyberdemon. Considering how much time you'll need to spend to beat this, you really won't want to have to restart the whole thing from one late game screw up. Or worse: One of those forced 50/50 guesses that Minesweeper is famous for. Though I suppose that's what save games are for (cheater!). :P

    Other than that, this is an excellent and fun Minesweeper recreation that I highly recommend to anyone familiar with the game!

  • Iconic - Mr. Chris
    doom.exe - Solo Play - 60151 bytes - (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    This is a techbase map for Doom, on E2M2. Detail and layout are pretty average. It's not too tough, except for one spot where a bunch of traps in a hallway open in sequence and it's easy to get sandwiched by a bunch of monsters. Worth a try, just watch out for that one trap.

  • elpaseomortal - Jose Barzallo "doomguyer"
    ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 440920 bytes - (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    A "school" map (I think) infested by demons. Lots of strange texturing, frustrating architecture, and cramped spaces, etc. It's not bad, per se, just not special.

  • Voodoo Veyor - Scrapped Portion - TheeXile
    Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 16016 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    You're trapped at the junction of four conveyor belts which spit monsters, ammo, etc. at you, and you have to survive. An interesting idea, but it's not very hard, and the surroundings get old since you're stuck in a 128x128 room. Also, you're apparently not supposed to jump onto the other conveyors, as you can get stuck in a weird, ashy hallway. Not very much substance here.

  • Ezam of Fear - Ruba
    doom2.exe - Solo Play - 56210 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    You run around in a brown maze in search of the red key with no idea of where it is. Also, archviles are chasing you. Basically, another gem by Ruba.

  • Brick Metal Techbase - Wills
    ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 74648 bytes - (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Kirby
    Here we have a nice little map that Wills has graced us with. Apparently inspired by the last few maps he reviewed, this isn't all too bad. Difficulty is substantial and well balanced where you will find a few clever traps and various secrets abound to keep you on your feet. Detail is nothing spectacular, but Wills has kept it interesting through great use of texturing in and of itself. All-in-all - certainly nothing above average, but a fun little map to play through. Give it a spin if you're in a classic Doom mood.

    Oh, and one more thing - it might just work in Hexen :)

  • UDMFORIG.zip - Chris Freund
    UDMF Compatible - Solo Play - 2123 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    For those of you who don't know about origwad, it was the first custom PWAD ever created for Doom. The author had to create the nodes structures/etc. by hand, which is quite a feat, but that meant the level couldn't be more complex than two rooms joined by a door. This is that map translated into UDMF format, which specifies everything in a map - vertices, linedefs, sectors, etc. - via text format.

    One thing I did notice is that this origwad in UDMF is a little more than four times as large as origwad.wad (5.62 kb as opposed to 1.35 kb). Does this mean maps in UDMF format will be much larger than if they were in .wad format?

    Quite honestly I'm not sure how UDMF format is advantageous besides being a universal format for all editors, but the fact that a map has been made with UDMF (to my knowledge, this is the only one I've seen so far that has) seems like a step forward. A very small step forward.

  • Alando Guns Reloaded - Alando1 (Alan)
    ZDoom Compatible - n/a - 16028155 bytes
    Reviewed by: TheeXile
    Let's see:
    1. ~15 megs compressed, ~30 megs uncompressed.
    2. Four separate wads doing different things (so much for just a weapons mod).
    3. Ripped Duke3d monsters galore.
    4. Ripped Hexen/Heretic monster sprites galore.
    5. Just about everything from the ZDoom bestiary.
    6. Dozens of pointless variations of the Doom marine holding different weapons or slightly remixed to appear to be doing different things (including my new favorite: The starving Ethiopian female marine!)
    7. Weapon sprites ripped from a million different sources.
    8. High resolution replacements for animated flats that don't animate (four identical copies of the same flat, no less). Except for the water, which is now black and has 20 something animation frames.
    9. Ripped sounds galore.
    10. You get the idea.

    I ain't even gonna touch this one. I don't know how it slipped by Ty.

  • Chip's Doom Challenge - not TimeOfDeath (Chris Balch)
    ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 805616 bytes - (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    Chip's Challenge converted to Doom (though not for the first time, ahem). Instead of an overhead, 2D format, you play through the eyes of Doomguy. This means you can see pretty much the whole level over the walls; this also makes it a little frustrating to comprehend the layout of the levels, and it doesn't help when things like the sliding floors force your vision in a certain direction. Nuts & Bolts seems impossible to beat, since you can't strafe over the sliding floors to unearth the hidden walls. I never really liked Chip's Challenge anyway.

  • LOINK - TimeOfDeath (Chris Balch)
    ZDoom Compatible - Solo Play - 1905585 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: TheeXile
    Well, first I must start off by saying that this isn't really the map for me. I'm not sure if that helps or hurts my qualification to be reviewing it, though. I'm not really against large-scale, non-linear slaughter maps (in fact I often like these qualities), but this map somehow found a way to make itself unlikeable to my tastes.

    I guess you could say this map is for anyone who does not care about logical level progression (I appeared to be moving all around without a clear idea which way to go next), has the patience to memorize invisible tripwires, considers rocket jumping a viable part of the gameplay progression (ugh!), and enjoys running around huge areas amidst ungodly numbers of enemies. I ended up saving myself the trouble of trying to beat this and just watched one of the many conveniently included uv-max demos (thanks for making me reinstall ZDoom 2.2.0, by the way).

    I'm not really sure how to classify this architecturally. It's a fairly large.... I guess city-like area with lots of tall buildings and other monolithic weird stuff. Lots of Quake textures, too. Vertical space is put to use almost as much as horizontal space, and it has some weirdo black sky with a single giant Lost Soul visible in it. I suspect average game time should be around one to three hours of trial and error with the monster battles and stumbling around to find tripwires, but I can't really say.

    I suppose you'll already know if you like this map yourself or not.

  • Play When Bored - Jon Vail
    doom2.exe - Solo Play - 27138 bytes - (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: udderdude
    A short map for Doom 2. This map has serious problems. First off is that the plasma gun is near impossible to get, since the trigger to make a lift drop and get at it is only triggerable once, and other monsters can trigger it. I had to look at the map with an editor just to figure out what the fuck was going on with it. This leaves the later part of the map nearly impossible to win, unless you feel like punching some arch-viles to death with a secret berzerk pack. There's also a rather large group of cacodemons and demons that are stuck together, and you can easily punch them to death with no problem. The rest of the map isn't that bad, but it doesn't really matter. It was made in 2 hours, and it shows. Seriously needed more playtesting.

  • Caution Tape Bonanza - Jon Vail
    Skulltag - Solo Play - 45482 bytes - (img) (img) (img) (img) (img)
    Reviewed by: Lizardcommando
    This is a short, but tough map for Doom 2. This requires the Skulltag source port since it uses textures from it. That's the only reason for Skulltag being a required source port. I was hoping to fight against some Skulltag monsters or pick up one of their Skulltag exclusive runes/powerups, but oh well. Right when you start the map, you face off against a Mancubus and right in front of you is a measly shotgun and a few shells. As you progress, you'll be running into a bunch of Lost Souls, Arachnotrons, a few Revenants, Demons, Imps, an Archvile, and a couple of Chaingunners. For any seasoned Doomer, they shouldn't be tough to handle. The level design isn't too bad. There is some very noticeable HOM on an elevator that should have been fixed before being released, but aside from that, it's not too bad.

Like what you are seeing? Want to get in on the reviewing action? Visit the /newstuff review center and start writing reviews today! You need a Doomworld forums account to participate.

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Heh, another alando guns. More over used rippy goodness.

Haven't seen a wad that's interested me in a long time now. :(

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Bloodshedder said:

  • UDMFORIG.zip - Chris Freund
    UDMF Compatible - Solo Play - 2123 bytes - (img)
    Reviewed by: Wills
    For those of you who don't know about origwad, it was the first custom PWAD ever created for Doom. The author had to create the nodes structures/etc. by hand, which is quite a feat, but that meant the level couldn't be more complex than two rooms joined by a door. This is that map translated into UDMF format, which specifies everything in a map - vertices, linedefs, sectors, etc. - via text format.

    One thing I did notice is that this origwad in UDMF is a little more than four times as large as origwad.wad (5.62 kb as opposed to 1.35 kb). Does this mean maps in UDMF format will be much larger than if they were in .wad format?


  • You are correct with that observation. Due to the text format UDMF maps will always be considerably larger than the binary map format if they are stored uncompressed in a WAD.

    However, you should not forget that this isn't an issue with distribution. There, UDMF is only 20-30% larger than the same map in binary format. It's also not a major factor if distributed as a PK3 file for ZDoom.


    Quite honestly I'm not sure how UDMF format is advantageous besides being a universal format for all editors, but the fact that a map has been made with UDMF (to my knowledge, this is the only one I've seen so far that has) seems like a step forward. A very small step forward.


    Have you ever read any of the UDMF_related threads? The point of UDMF is:

    - unlimited extensibility. Each port can add as many new features as ot needs.
    - proper definition of things that can only be achieved indirectly with the old format (e.g. setting line IDs which in Hexen format maps can only be done with setting a special for the line.)
    - removal of all format related limits. The binary format has a hard limit of 65534 sidedefs and several large ZDoom maps got compromised by this limit already.


    That said, this particular WAD is more or less pointless. It would have value if no UDMF capable editor was available but that isn't the case.

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    Provided the port handles it, UDMF allows stuff like setting different X and Y offsets for each part of a sidedef (try that with a binary map), more than 3 skill filters for things (base UDMF allows a different filter for each of the five skill levels, ZDoom which lets you define custom skills gives you eight different filters) and likewise for class filters (in a Hexen-like game with different character classes), X and Y offsets for floors and ceilings, and so on.

    It also allows arguments greater than 255, contrarily to Hexen.

    There aren't many UDMF maps available right now because most projects that need UDMF are ambitious things that'll take a long time to be completed; and the only editor that supports it for the moment, DB2, hasn't been available for very long yet.

    (Another asset of UDMF is that it's much easier than the binary to generate with common scripting tools. BHS over on the ZDoom forum created Zokoban using a PHP script to make the levels...)

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    Graf Zahl said:

    It's also not a major factor if distributed as a PK3 file for ZDoom.

    Or if you use either a port that can use wads stored in zips, or if you use a frontend that can handle throwing zips at ports that can't extract zips on their own. ;)

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    In a week where the best compliment a wad gets is "average," isn't that wad above average?

    I'm just sick of that word anyway. Let's not ever use it in any review ever again.

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    I understand this isn't an advertising campaign but it makes me cry when people only take screenshots of the errors in my maps :(

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    lol @ Alandoguns and Avoid.

    Hooray for a somewhat positive review on my own map.

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    JohnnyRancid said:

    I understand this isn't an advertising campaign but it makes me cry when people only take screenshots of the errors in my maps :(

    Submit it to someone else beforehand, for checking?

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    My Alando Guns review was accepted?! Wow.

    Bloodshedder said:

    • Voodoo Veyor - Scrapped Portion - TheeXile
      Boom Compatible - Solo Play - 16016 bytes - (img)
      Reviewed by: Wills
      You're trapped at the junction of four conveyor belts which spit monsters, ammo, etc. at you, and you have to survive. An interesting idea, but it's not very hard, and the surroundings get old since you're stuck in a 128x128 room. Also, you're apparently not supposed to jump onto the other conveyors, as you can get stuck in a weird, ashy hallway. Not very much substance here.

    Yeah generally you don't do much jumping in Boom maps. Nice screenshot. :P

    Oh well. At least I managed to get some feedback. Though I think threads are a better approach for that purpose from now on.

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    Wills said:

    For those of you who don't know about origwad, it was the first custom PWAD ever created for Doom. The author had to create the nodes structures/etc. by hand, which is quite a feat, but that meant the level couldn't be more complex than two rooms joined by a door. This is that map translated into UDMF format, which specifies everything in a map - vertices, linedefs, sectors, etc. - via text format.

    Great job of plagiarizing my idgames review text.

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    What the hell are you talking about? When you're talking about a map that is made of two rooms connected by a door, of course some reviews will be very similar. Stop flattering yourself.

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    chips19 - I didn't realize chip's challenge had already been converted to doom, got links? The walls were lowered so you can see over them since it's weird not being 2D overhead, and I thought seeing over the walls might help a bit (also try with chasecam). The force floors probably could've been done better but I couldn't think of a better way to do them at the time. None of the levels are impossible. For nuts&bolts you gotta hold strafe and back on the force floors (there's a speed demo in the zip that goes through all the levels in one sitting in under 21 minutes). So yeah, chips19 is by far my biggest doom achievement in terms of amount of work done in a short period of time.

    loink - sorry that you had to reinstall zdoom 220 for the demos. I guess I should've uploaded the wad to /idgames when it was done (zdoom 220 was the new version at that time) instead of waiting. And I forgot to mention that gggmork recorded his demos without rocket jumping, without freelook, and only using the keyboard - pretty cool considering this wad was designed for rocket jumping, freelook, and mouse+keys.

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    @Minesweeper
    Back in the holy days of the BBS i had a little programm that could create a Minesweeper map that runs without any scripting in vanilla Doom.
    Maybe someone remembers that one too and remembers the name of said tool so that i can find and use it again. :)

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    Bastet Furry said:

    @Minesweeper
    Back in the holy days of the BBS i had a little programm that could create a Minesweeper map that runs without any scripting in vanilla Doom.
    Maybe someone remembers that one too and remembers the name of said tool so that i can find and use it again. :)

    It was packaged with Eternal Doom 3 I believe. It did just that.

    Edit: Jim Flynn made it, appropriately. That guy was the best!

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