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Sigvatr

Hell Superior

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Hell Superior has been the name of my generic map set that I've had sitting around for years. It is mostly full of half-finished maps or even just single rooms. I have a tendency to make interesting looking things rather than trying to make actual maps to play on. I spend a few hours on something that looks nice, run around it in game and look at it for a while, then close Doom Builder.

However, I've been chatting and collaborating on little things with local complainer and demo maker gggmork lately and in the process I've managed to finally figure me out a methodology that actually lets me make complete levels instead of just a few nice looking columns. I actually take this quite seriously, and I want to think gggmork for his advice.

Making Doom maps is like a psychological battle with yourself. The first step is discovering something about mapping that you enjoy, which gives you the motivation to begin the process. The second step is to develop the willpower and stamina to work hard and continue mapping even when you are getting bored of it. This could be because you are doing the same thing, something about the map is nagging you, something is too hard, etc. The final step, coming about from experience, is being able to make compromises between your mapping style and the realities of Doom mapping. These include actually finishing a map instead of working on it forever, avoiding getting caught in traps such as endlessly detailing things no one will ever notice, focusing on gameplay above all and calling it a day when any further effort will have a negligible impact on the map.

Doom mapping is, no pun intended, a battle with your inner demons. Through playing other people's maps, you don't just play Doom, you peer into their soul. A complete map comes about through the mapper's struggle to master himself, and the greatest maps come about through the greatest of struggles.

Anyway, I started and finished a rather decent looking map today alone. Usually I only ever finish a map like, twice a year, and it's through sustained effort over time, so it makes me pretty happy that I can actually finish a map in a day.

I think I am going to turn Hell Superior into a proper map set instead of my junk wad.

So here's some shots of the first map. I still need to detail a few bare parts, but aside from that it is mostly finished. I don't know if it will be MAP01 or not, but whatever, here they are:









Here's to a successful map set!

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Nice combination of styles, and also, well-designed. Nice.

I hope it won't be as boring as some Vanilla Doom WADs (Twilight Zone, Memento Mori)

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Vermil said:

Single player or Deathmatch?

To me, it actually looks more like the later.


Single player, although I will try and implement some good coop in that.

One of my problems with coop, though, is that I live in Australia, and there is never anyone to play coop with here. The best I can get is 300 pings to Russia and stuff. If there are any Australian residents here that could help me implement coop, send me a PM.

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Also, if you hadn't noticed, I'm a huge sucker for vanilla Doom style gameplay and layouts.

Although this will probably be Boom compatible. Otherwise everyone will complain.

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Given the feedback I've received on this project here and elsewhere, I am considering the possibility of making this a designed-for-coop set. I've had ideas for designing coop maps for a long time, but I want it to be something special rather than just standard Doom maps with extra monsters for the other players to fight.

Currently taking ideas.

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Interesting combo of masonry and electronics. Is this place inhabited by spiderdemons?

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Looks really cool man, I hope you finish it. How many levels is this gonna be?

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Sigvatr said:

Also, if you hadn't noticed, I'm a huge sucker for vanilla Doom style gameplay and layouts.

Although this will probably be Boom compatible. Otherwise everyone will complain.


Not me. I always look forward to vanilla maps. It's almost like a lost art or something. But once in a while there's a pleasant surprise (like Reverie).

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Sigvatr said:

These include actually finishing a map instead of working on it forever, avoiding getting caught in traps such as endlessly detailing things no one will ever notice, focusing on gameplay above all and calling it a day when any further effort will have a negligible impact on the map.


so true.

you've got some really interesting texture/theme work there, but I like it. I really dig the style. this is just the kind of thing i like. please finish.

sincerely, tango

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The texture combinations you've got there are really unconventional but I think it works well. Looks awesome.

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Looks really cool. Kudos!

I have had some ideas for co-op lately myself. And by that I mean making maps that _must_ be played in co-op. Puzzles that cannot be solved by only one player, more areas that will open up in the map considering how many players there are etc.

Really interesting stuff.

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Melon said:

The texture combinations you've got there are really unconventional but I think it works well. Looks awesome.


it's great. like a former technological map getting twisted by hell's influence.

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Red and green always came off looking..rather festive to me, unless done really well. I think it's the red floor in the first shot that's throwing me off. Architecture looks good.

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In principle I agree with Use3D, but I think this looks good in spite of the difficult red/green color combination. It's definitely a fine line to tow, though.

Also, I like that I'm seeing dark reds in your palette instead brown yuk.

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esselfortium said:

Also, I like that I'm seeing dark reds in your palette instead brown yuk.


That must be what's throwing me off, my brain is expecting barf-brown in the distance.

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Those screenshots look great! I really like the red / green combination. Also mixing that marble texture with metal looks pretty neat, I wonder why that hasn't been done before. :)

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By all means, finish them!

Also, can you use another port to take higher quality screenshots on the next batch of them since it looks like you are using PrBoom or something along that line, as the detail is washed out from the resolution you are using.

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John Romero once remarked, "It looked like Christmas" in reference to the beta version BFG9000 that shot red and green plasma balls everywhere. I think that this wisdom is relevant to what I have been trying to do with this map, so I have decided to ditch the red colors.

Honestly, I was inspired by Whispers of Satan's MAP28 Sacrificial Grounds, which manages to combine red and green with such success that it is often considered to be one of the best maps in the wad.

Anyway, this map is intended to appear early on in the wad, so I will save all of the red colors for maps that appear later on. I think it looks much better now, anyway. Judge for yourself:










TrueDude said:

Will the mapset have this map in it as well? Definitely looking forward to this regardless.


I almost forgot about that! Yeah, it's a half finished map that I can probably throw in here if you want me to.

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esselfortium complained too much about the new scheme, so here is a speculative color scheme:



This is a compromise between the two schemes, so I'll see what people think before I make my final decision. In the meantime, I will be using this scheme (it's also easier to see what I'm doing in Doom Builder).

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I like it, a good compromise between the two color schemes.

Sigvatr said:

I almost forgot about that! Yeah, it's a half finished map that I can probably throw in here if you want me to.


Yeah I do, I love the E4 vibe that it gives off.

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Sigvatr said:

This is a compromise between the two schemes, so I'll see what people think before I make my final decision.


On balance, I prefer the all-green version. However, there's nothing wrong with the red and green version. I think you've combined them in a way that avoids the usual red/green pitfalls, and it has more personality than the other two. You could easily go with red and green for the finished level, if you wanted to. I think the compromise version is the weakest of the three, just because of those tech pillars inside the wall. They were beautiful as red brick, and now they just seem a little odd.

This mapset looks very interesting, anyway. It seems very reminiscent of Thy Flesh Consumed, but with much finer architecture. What are you aiming to do with the gameplay?

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