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Devalaous

WAD editing aid for a complete nub

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I have some general questions that I hope I can get some help with, that wont be too insanely advanced and confusing.

First of all, I've had a copy of Master Levels lying around, but havent really touched it, since its in an annoying format I cant stand (load up one wad, play it, quit, load next one, etc). I generally want to make a "normal" wad out of them and play through them all in a row, with it ending at map 20 (On that note, anyone know what the ideal level order is? I know Attack is first, thanks to both the PSX Final Doom and the Xbox port of Resurrection of Evil. I never played Master Levels in Res though, since I was saving all use of that disc until I had beat Doom 3. Does it even have all 21 levels?)

Having all the automap names changed is a must as well, and it'd be ideal I guess to throw in the ending text for Master Levels that was in the PSX Final Doom after level 20. If only Master Levels was made as an IWAD in the beginning :(

As for the automap names, how would I edit basically any WAD to display the actual names people made for them? It annoys me to no end having save files with Doom 2 level names, I tend to forget which level I'm actually on unless I'm extremely familiar with a map.

All of this is extremely daunting to me, especially as ive tried dabbling with all this stuff over the years, and every time I did my head in.

What can I use to do this stuff, and is there a nub-friendly way that wont implode my brain?

I pretty much exclusively use GZDoom and have Doomsday installed as a side option, so I'd prefer something that caters to them.

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I can't seem to load the page right now but if you look up the ZDoom Wiki and then do a search for MAPINFO, you will find how to change the levels names on the automap. It is actually quite simple but would require the use of SLumpEd or XWE to create the MAPINFO lump and add the appropriate lines of code (around 3-4 lines in case you were wondering). All in all, the ZDoom Wiki is very useful for learning ways of editing wads for Z or GZDoom.

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First step would be to merge all the WADs in XWE.

Then change the MAP names. Understand that all the actual THINGS to BLOCKMAP info for one map comes after its MAPxx lump, and is then broken up by the next MAPxx lump.

The intermission-screen names for each level are a graphic, look up what they are called for each level, you'll need to change the name of every graphic except MAP01.

ZDoom's MAPINFO lets you change the automap name easily. The format is map MAP01 "My Great Map". You can put nojump and nocrouch after each map definition too, or after a defaultmap line. Check the ZDoom Wiki, or a ZDoom PWAD for an example. You can also change level names with DeHackEd but I've never looked into it.

You could just use Eternity Engine, which lets you load a PWAD from the menu. Though I'm not sure if it lets you load MAP01 after MAP01, but it's maybe worth a try?

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Yeah, I couldnt get into that MAPINFO page a while earlier when I was trying to research how to do this.

And as I'm entirely new to anything like this, I grasp the concept but thats about it, a lot of the suggestions are flying over my head right now, sorry. All Ive really done with wad files was edit Icon of Sin to make it more hellish, and that was many years ago. I'll need an explanation of what program is what, and how to do these things, if someone's willing to bend that far. I meant "complete nub" sadly. I'd rather learn how to do it though, because its not like someone can do it for me; Master Levels is a commercial id product.

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Have a read of the Doom Wiki and open some PWADs in XWE. It's all fairly straightforward once you know what the terms mean.

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Ragnor said:

And as I'm entirely new to anything like this, I grasp the concept but thats about it, a lot of the suggestions are flying over my head right now, sorry..... I'll need an explanation of what program is what, and how to do these things, if someone's willing to bend that far. I meant "complete nub" sadly. I'd rather learn how to do it though, because its not like someone can do it for me....

Check out the tutorials at Doom Nexus. Some are intended for newbies.

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k, I'll give them a try.

With the, I assume, advanced tools out now compared to a long time ago, I might understand whats going on a bit more :p

I'll never be a mapper though, dont have the patience to build up a giant level. I certainly have the imagination for it, sadly enough :{

As for the Master Levels themselves, does anyone know if the Resurrection of Evil Xbox port actually has all 21 levels? I dont have the spare time to go through them, and wouldnt if I could anyway. I would rather keep the experience as fresh as possible, seeing as Master Levels is the hardest to obtain Doom game and took me years to hunt down.

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...this is al just as insanely confusing as it was years ago. On a side note: Oh the irony, I had an early version of XWE on my first computer, it did nothing but crash.

If I can get these levels merged, I have this mapinfo thing totry and do, which doesnt seem to have any kind of tutorial to it ANYWHERE. Argh, why must something so simple in theory be so out of reach?

EDIT: Merging just screwed everything up. Good thing I had a backup. And all I did was merge the second Master Level with the first!

EDIT2: ...and loading up the wad again reveals it apparantly did everything it was supposed to. My brain is definitely going to implode

EDIT3: Oh crap, this is not my day ** Xbox Master Levels took the laziest approach humanly possible, all the levels are in alphabetical order, and a mishmash of level replacements. Attack just read Entryway, the next said it was Map5: Ghost Town while saying I was going to Underhalls, and so on. I'm going to need people with experience in Master Levels to recommend the optimum order to put them in, while also following the PSX Final Doom's ordering of the Master Levels, which I felt was pretty balanced.

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Make a backup of the Master Levels. Open XWE, go File, Open and choose ATTACK.WAD



Go File, Merge and choose BLACKTWR.WAD.



Notice none of the new lumps have a type. I like them to appear properly, so I go File, Close then open ATTACK.WAD again.



Notice Black Tower replaces MAP25. Right click on the MAP25 lump and choose Rename, call it MAP02.



Repeat this for all the levels.

Note that MAP07 has special treatment of Tag 666 when all Mancubi die, and Tag 667 when all Arachnotrons. These tags don't work on other levels, so if you rename a MAP07 to something else you will break it if it depends on deaths of those monsters.

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PSX Final Doom has these levels included in this order:

o PSX Final Doom map list (30 maps):

Map name | Map | Entry from | Exit to
---------------------|-----|-----------------------|---------
ATTACK...............|..1..|.Episode 1 start.......|..2......
VIRGIL...............|..2..|..1....................|..3......
CANYON...............|..3..|..2....................|..4......
COMBINE..............|..4..|..3....................|..5......
CATWALK..............|..5..|..4....................|..6......
FISTULA..............|..6..|..5....................|..7......
GERYON...............|..7..|..6....................|..8......
MINOS................|..8..|..7....................|..9......
NESSUS...............|..9..|..8....................|.10......
PARADOX..............|.10..|..9....................|.11......
SUBSPACE.............|.11..|.10....................|.12......
SUBTERRA.............|.12..|.11....................|.13......
VESPERAS.............|.13..|.12....................|.14......

So thats eight maps to squeeze in between these.

EDIT: I opened a different wad to find some MAPINFO entries, and succeeded, only it displayed a whole lot of errors and ended up replacing it with the attack.wad that had been merged with all the other maps. Oh brother. As for the MAPINFO, seeing it as a reference is all well and good, but what parts do I copy and paste then edit? I was going to get a screenshot, but yeah, the random overwrite makes that hard.

Also thanks for solving one problem before I asked it; How to change the map numbers. For the map thats on MAP31's slot, how would I deal with that? If I change that map to MAP15, and MAP32 to MAP31 can I still use the secret exit as intended, or do things get messed up?

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So I recovered the lost .pk3 that somehow got overwritten without any sayso from me, and heres its mapinfo

http://i120.photobucket.com/albums/o181/Ekerezan/mapinfo.jpg

How do I mimic this kind of thing in the Master Levels wad? And just how much do I write? I fixed that glaring typo where it says "turing the evil of hell" into turning, and it destroyed the entire mapinfo making me use the Undo feature, so things once again, are not obvious.

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I believe any Secret Exit lindef on a MAP01-MAP29 level will send you to MAP31. Exiting from MAP31 sends you back to MAP16. I assume a Secret Exit on MAP31 sends you to MAP32. I don't know how a Secret Exit on MAP30 works. I expect all this behaviour is hard-coded into the engine, though it can all be overcome with ZDoom features.

The MAPINFO music, intermusic, sky, interpic and titlepatch are all described in the ZDoom Wiki. Obviously some reference music lumps, some reference image lumps, sky has a few numbers that influence its' behaviour. I've seen these in action but never made my own, I mainly use MAPINFO to turn off jumping.

Looking through the Master Levels, there are a few MAP07s. Without playing them all, I'm guessing at least two use 666/667. Is this even actually do-able?

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Super Jamie said:

I believe any Secret Exit lindef on a MAP01-MAP29 level will send you to MAP31.

In Boom (and Vanilla, I believe) secret exits work only in maps which originally had them. Using a secret exit in any other map restarts the same map.

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I noticed that there was three MAP07s last night as well, but I'd say it is possible, the wad I got that MAPINFO example from has a version of Dead Simple on MAP37 I think.

It seems this is only going to work on ZDoom if I ever get everything working, thus making things more complicating.

By any chance could someone make a titlepic out of the Master Levels cover art?

EDIT: MAPINFO's Zdoom Wiki page is showing up again, finally, and has this:
* map07special

This level wants the special feature of Doom II MAP07. In this case, when every mancubus on the level dies, any sectors tagged 666 will have their floors lower to the next lowest floor, and when every arachnotron on the level is dead, any sectors tagged 667 will have their floors raised by the height of their lower textures.

So yeah, I can get it all working at some point.

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Ive been working on things slowly, and I'm getting the hang of some things, but mostly due to the MAPINFO file from the other file being a reference.

Am I correct in that to make a MAPINFO file in the new wad file, I just click Add Entry then type MAPINFO? I know it sounds obvious, but half the time when I do what seems obvious, something blows up in my face.

A lot of these levels use a custom starry sky. After merging all the individual wads, I have a pile of RSKY1 image files in the Lumps section. Do I delete all but one of these and use "sky1 RSKY1 0" on the maps that use that sky?

As for adding a custom intermission script, I put in my PSX Final Doom copy and beat Vesperas to get this for reference:


Do I just type in all that to an exittext/entrytext? (I have no idea what the difference between these is, the wiki page isnt very clear at all on this)

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Ragnor said:

Am I correct in that to make a MAPINFO file in the new wad file, I just click Add Entry then type MAPINFO?

Correct.

Any patches you load (like RSKY1) will take over any previous patches with the same name. So pick an RSKY1 you like, and that can be the sky for all the maps. Or, you can give all the patches a unique name (RSKY11, RSKY12, etc) and use the "sky1" section to give each map its' original sky.

I am not sure on the other stuff, perhaps someone else knows better.

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Ragnor said:

I'm going to need people with experience in Master Levels to recommend the optimum order to put them in, while also following the PSX Final Doom's ordering of the Master Levels, which I felt was pretty balanced.

You might check the Master Levels FAQ, which attempts to address this question based on the prevailing Usenet consensus at the time (early 1998 I believe).

I noticed that there was three MAP07s last night as well, but I'd say it is possible, the wad I got that MAPINFO example from has a version of Dead Simple on MAP37 I think.

It seems this is only going to work on ZDoom if I ever get everything working, thus making things more complicating.

Probably true, since there are also multiple maps with the MAP30 special, are there not?  In any case you wouldn't necessarily be able to go from MAP07 to MAP30 (MEPHISTO.WAD) in a sensible order, without skipping levels and without displacing the secret level.  :Z

By any chance could someone make a titlepic out of the Master Levels cover art?

Don't hold your breath, since that is a commercial product too!

Jodwin said:

In Boom (and Vanilla, I believe) secret exits work only in maps which originally had them. Using a secret exit in any other map restarts the same map.

Indeed.  In 1994 this property was used as a booby trap for solo players (hitting the wrong switch resets the level instead of exiting it) or as a convenience for DM players with modems (if you want to stop and count frags, smoke a cigarette, then begin a new session on the same map without having to reconnect).

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Ah, so I should rename it something like "STARSKY".

Now that I'm learning what on earth I'm doing bit by bit, I'm getting further ideas to make it a better end result. One of these, is throwing in the PSX Final Doom's soundtrack (There were unique tracks that played only certain Master Levels levels for example). This is pretty much covered often in tutorials, so I'll let those help instead of you guys. I'm proably exhausting patience enough as it is :p

Another, is filling up the remaining level slots to make it a complete episode, and in doing so, saving myself the trouble of forcing the game to end unnaturally. I found a great solution in minutes by reading the text files that came with the Master Levels, some of the levels are part of a series! Namely Dr Sleep's maps and Sverre's Cabal series. The latter I had on my harddrive for years, so they'll fit right in I think; They give me the same feel that the ones on Master Levels do. I'll have to download Dante's Gate and Crossing Acheron though. Adding these would bring the count up to 30 of 32, any ideas of a further two maps that would fit in with the Master Levels? According to Doom Wikia, some levels designed for the Master Levels project ended up in Maximum Doom instead, maybe them..

EDIT: I realise I'm likely breaking rules here, but I assure you this is purely for my own use. The titlepic thing isnt really neccesary, but I figured it would be allowed to use, seeing as theres a big picture of it on the Doom wiki, and all the modifed Doom 2 titlepics ive seen. But hey, I'm no expert, I just download and play things!

FURTHER EDIT: If the whole secret thing cant be changed, that means I'll need to find a good MAP15 with a secret exit, or change a map I put in 15's slot to only have an exit to level 31. Plutonia's Cyberden doesnt include an exit to level 16 and forces you to play Go 2 It, so I guess it's possible.

MINI EDIT: Wow, that FAQ is a great find, thanks!

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Well thats lovely. I downloaded Doom Builder, loaded up Attack, had a look in Visual Mode, and my laptop turned itself off from sudden overheating (Visual Mode is THAT system draining? My laptop is one of those extremely powerful things)

I boot my system up again.....and find that every map in the wad still named MAP01 EXCEPT for Attack has been wiped. After I start again on this thing, I guess I'll have to give every map a number as a placeholder.

As for the two levels short of 32, I decided I'll add Betray and Sewers, the maps that were added to the Xbox versions. I'll never play those bonus games, since I have much better ways to play the classics, so why not add them as secret levels and play them on the PC? I'll make Elevator MAP15, Bad Dream into MAP16, and have Sewers lead into Betray in the same fashion that Cyberden forces you into Go 2 It. Why I am making things harder for myself is beyond me.

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Before you merge two or more maps into a single wad you will need to make sure that the map numbers are not duplicated (but I guess you already discovered that).

The thing to do is open each map in an editor (such as DB2), change the map number, then use an appropriate utility to merge all of them into a single wad. The number you assign to each map will, naturally, correspond to the sequence that you wish the maps to be played.

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Ive had my first taste of success; I named all the levels MAP40 to MAP60, with the exception of Attack (01), Elevator (15), Bad Dream (16), Sewers (31 and Betray (32)

The MAPINFO worked not just in the automap, but in the level screens too! I was sure you had to make custom graphics for that, but I guess this is another ZDoom advantage. All the levels loaded while in thier placeholders, some even automatically applied the STARSKY file without any previous commands. Elevator's secret exit lead me to Sewers like it should have, but I have yet to change the Sewers exit switch to a secret exit.

As for bugs, the sky seems to be messed up in all levels not using the starry sky, and Sewers needs a whoel bunch of exclusive Doom textures that I'll need to extract and include in the wad. Finishing level one displayed the text from the custom intermission taken from the text in the picture above, I dont why, but thats another thing to sort out. I'm starting to get the hang of this now, but still so much I need to have explained.

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