The DW megawad Club plays: BF_Thud! (Join us!)

MAP25
I admit, I liked this one - insofar as, after taking the wrong fall into a pit with no escape (red door), my second attempt was a fairly straightforward race-against-radsuit-expiration run, mowing down cannon fodder as I went. A lot of red here, which is kinda cool and makes this level stand out more than a little from the others. And, apart from the aforementioned pit faux-pas, it was quite fun. However, one of my least favourite things in Doom levels is an inescapable toxic pit, so I'm only giving this an average 5/10.

MAP26
Very little in the way of enemy challenge at all here -- it's like the overall difficulty peaked around the double-figures and held itself there. There's one close-range Mancubus fight, but that's about it. I can count more bad things about this map than good things though, I'm afraid to say. The good is that; save for some wandering around until the exit opened itself (I have no idea what I tripped, but it wasn't a switch for sure) the map was relatively wander-free -- at the cost of a central 'hub' teleporter, whose sector was set to maximum damage. WHAT THE FUCK, KLIE? No. Overall, no. We've had a couple of decent maps until now, I won't let this slide. 3/10

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MAP25

I ended up enjoying this one despite myself. Generally speaking Klie can't be trusted with damaging floors as he tends to mix treks through melting liquids with mazes, obscure switch sequences and mandatory exploration which leaves me with tingling stumps for legs everytime. What's more this one adds copious amounts of sergeants, limited chaigun ammo to deal with them and a pit that if you drop into without the red key traps you there. The latter is particularly unforgivable as it tempts you in there with the blue key (which from a distance is not obviously unatainable).

Buuut... once I got over this I decided to use saves to cut down the frustration of finding my way around while the rad suits counts down... turned out I never needed to use them. The rad suits were well placed and other than the blue key area I found it reasonably navigatable. It looked nice too. A pleasant suprise.

MAP26

This one was pretty inoffensive. It was pretty standard fare and without any real standout moments (the tunnel with the warping seargents was probably the highlight) but no real fatal errors (closest being the teleporter destination that tries to kill you for no good reason that I could see). I nearly fell foul of the close range fight with the manc but Klie was good enough to provide an escape route to allow you to re-stock your health, which I thought was smart. God knows how I opened up the exit. After fleeing the manc it was blocked so I went looking for the manc room again, failed to find it, came back accross the exit - and this time it was open... Unremarkable, I suppose but it actually feels like a breather to get a bit of (relative) normality between the twisted gimmicks the majority of the set offers up. It was also one of the nicest looking levels, so for that and the absence of anything that caused me to grit my teeth in annoyance/frustration, I guess this qualifies as one of the better maps of the megawad.

I played the very first room of MAP27, without giving anything away, although I survived pretty comfortably I hope I don't die and have to pistol start this map...

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I missed a day so here goes
Map23 - barrels and crates in a tech base, couldn't figure out how to exit, every switch pressed but still 1 bar blocked the exit, dunno how that happened.
Map24 - It's ok when you figure it out, the small enemies can drain your health quickly. Not too bad but a little OTT on the acres of nukage.
Map25 - A map set entirely in blood, not bad but the secrets are ridiculous.
Map26 - Yet again sets up the theme well, the sector where you get teleported to doe ridiculous damage, is that necessary. Overwhelming stock of supplies though.
Took a look at map27, holy crap haha

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Didn't get to play this yesterday because of 32in24-12, so I'm a bit behind

Map23: Cute level. I liked how the rooms were filled with barrels. Also some of the puzzles were good, like that ceiling switch in the first room. Other than that it was the usual Kile stuff; go through the level killing a bunch of hitscanners and imps, and then run around trying to find the switch that opens the exit.

Map24: At first I was expecting to hate this one. Considering how Kile builds his levels around the Doom II titles I was expecting a bunch of those bullshit razor thin walkways over inescapable pits with lost souls ramming their heads up your ass, but it actually wasn't that bad. It was pretty similar to Map09, but not as good for several reasons. First of all there were some parts where I tried to run into a pit but I was blocked by monsters below. Some of the pits were also unexpectedly inescapable. Also that room with all the lifts was annoying (it's boring waiting for them to lower).

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map 25 - wow, made it to the exit with 10 health to spare. The deadly floor strikes again, thankfully it wasn't too much of a maze, and there was a fair amount of health (though an unfair amount of rad suits). I didn't even check if there were any secrets, I wasn't about to go back and explore..

26 - I couldnt figure out the secret in this one, though its a testement to the map that I took the time to try and find it. Very perculiar layout, with lots of gaps to drop down into awaiting enemy onslaught. Highlights include a deadly teleport closet and a mancubus in a hole, I spent a few confused seconds standing on his head. All good fun.

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cannonball said:

Took a look at map27, holy crap haha


Indeed. Not looking forward to this one

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DAY 14 *FINAL DAY*

MAP27

Building on the previous themes of having a face full of monsters as the level starts, this one provides a treat with a Cybie directly in front of you!
Better strafe right immediately or this will end quickly.
Very nicely built level, reminiscent of Klie's own Map 16 and the original Monster Condo.
Now we're getting some heavy hitters: Archies, Mancs, PEs, Revs, albeit in a not too threatening manner, although that first Archie was a surprise.
Straightforward for the rest of the map: small maze, find keys, open locked doors, exit.

100/97/0 6:34
Very nice.

MAP28

Deviates from the script, with no monsters at the beginning, but a FUCKTON of switches... it's all good though, as any one of the 16 switches will do the same thing (phew).
Leaving the start area puzzled me for close to a minute until I figured out to jump over the ledge by running over a lowered platform, so duh for me.... and yay for telefrags!
I get nervous when I see a Klie damaging floor, but I just managed to safely navigate this nice underground blood cave before my suit expired.
The other teleport area is nice, and instantly I had a flashback to the outside area in E1M7.... love nostalgia. Nice area, but nothing to use those rockets on :(
Interesting that the only thing resembling a traditional Doom techbase is found in the second to last level.

98/98/0 4:40
Excellent

MAP29

So now it's come down to this. dobugabumaru guaranteed less than 1 minute, so let's see... *holds BFG tight*
It's a big outdoor area, with a beautiful and HUGE red pentagram hanging in the air, and a teleport in the centre. No enemies here, just megaspheres and rocket ammo.
Nowhere but the teleporter to go, let's do it.. ..and arrive in a huge dark room with what must be a dozen Cybies & Spiders, all too busy duking it out with each other to notice poor little me wondering WTF is going on... and then it ends, E1M8 style.

16/100/100 0:28
Unexpected and rather good (pre)ending..

MAP30

Yes I realise this wad has only 29 maps, but see below for my thoughts on this...
This is, of course, the original Icon of Sin, and I pump rockets into it's exposed brain, thanks to the wonders of mouselook.
I die just after firing that last fatal rocket that kills the Icon, so we're both dead now... fitting, really.

42/66/100 1:09

So, was Map 29 supposed to lead into the traditional Icon fight?
Does the lack of a Map 30 from this wad and the Map 29 ending suggest this?
Is dying in the purgatory of Cybies/Spiders supposed to result in you going to the bowels of hell to face the Icon itself?
These questions, and many more, will NEVER be answered... but seriously this is what I believe is the intention here.
Now I can finally read kmxexii's review.

Looking at BF_THUD! overall, I have to say I am very impressed.
Most wads back then, of course, were a steaming pile of monkey crap, with the exception of UAC_DEAD.
But Chris Klie has attempted here to make something of more substance and quality of design.
Some of his concepts are hit & miss, but the author at least actually HAD real concepts. I can see why he's in the industry now.
This was a great experience personally and I highly recommend more people to join the DW Megawad Club for CC4. That will be very polarizing, I'm sure!

dobugabumaru, when do we start?

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Map25: Another one similar to Map09, but this one isn't nearly as good as the other two. Those areas that you can get stuck in if you don't have the right key are horrible. You don't have any less reason to run into the one with red door than the right path, so really there's no skill or anything involved with going down the right path. You just randomly go the wrong way and die. That's bullshit.

Map26: Another bad one. It's the best looking level so far, but the gameplay is horrible. Once again there's a deathtrap that's completely impossible to be aware of without prior knowledge. There's a room where you have to drop down into a small pit with a mancubus in it. I hate stuff like that. Also you're given the usual ridiculous amount of health and ammo.

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REMINDER: You can finish map 29 today if you want to.

MAP27: Personally, I think this is Klie's best map. Barring a few oddities, it's the most solid and most fun, with a good layout. The highlight of the whole megawad for me is the fight with the mancs and revs in the library room, with the AVs released for good sport. It's frantic, fun, and reminds me the most of modern level design.

MAP28: A solid penultimate level. I feel like the amount of switches were a good send-off for this whole mapset, since it brought the megawad back to its roots. But there were plenty of enemies sprinkled throughout that I didn't feel underwhelmed or annoyed. Used up my rad suit too early so I had to run through the damaging maze, which was fun.

MAP29: Interesting, but disappointing. Kind of wanted to fight a switch-based IoS :P

And that's BF_THUD! Intriguing, bizarre, but consistent. I'm not quite sure how to judge it, because we've received so many excellent megawads since then that it's hard to imagine what it would be like back then and connecting up to /idgames through a dial-up modem and downloading a brand new Doom 2 32 level set! It would've been exciting, but it's a bit hard to recommend it as an exciting experience in 2012.

I mean, it was really fun to play through, but wow was it unconventional. Perhaps I just need to play more 90s wads to appreciate how refined Klie's effort was, which I'm sure was one of the best in a sea of jagged and misaligned rooms. Also, while it is really "fun" to try and figure out each map's "puzzle" or "theme", I think it really diminishes replayability when you know what to expect/what order to progress in.

Overall, I'd rate it about a 6/10.

Also, what was everyone's favorite and least favorite maps? My least favorite would probably be MAP07 or MAP08 for getting the jokewad treatment, but MAP28 was definitely the one that got my blood pumping the most.

-----

@Purist Thanks for mentioning the warping sergeant trap in MAP26, that was a very interesting trap I forgot to mention, if only because it's the only instance where Klie warps in enemies BEHIND you... although I disagree with you and consider that -20 damaging sector a severe fatal error in that map.

@glenzinho We start CC4 as soon as it's available for download (which should be the 17th). I'll make a topic for it as soon as I get my greedy hands on it, and we'll go from there. For now, just consider this a small vacation. I'm hoping we'll get more people joining, since I think a lot were rubbed the wrong way with BF_THUD! But thanks for sticking through it with us.

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It was my pleasure!

Now, how about this pic for the official DW Megawad Club logo screen?

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Map 27 - Time - 5:00, 1 death (100/100)
Great Map with a great theme and whilst the layout is fairly linear, the design lets you believe it is not. Just great with good fights and acceptable secrets.
Map 28 - Time - 5:16, no deaths (100/0)
Another good map if a little too easy, just lots of weak enemies and a not so annoying damaging floor area. Couldn't find how to access the two little secret rooms, oh well.
Map 29 (N/A)
This map was stupid

In the end this wad has quirky design, some mad moments leading to some joy and some real pain, overall it's an ok wad.

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MAP27
Woah, Cyberdemon. From the off. If only this were one of those highly-pointless Klie fights where I'm invulnverable and just empty a shedload of cells into him. Oh, it is. The rest of this map wasn't bad at all. Nice triple-Archvile threat n one area, and backed up by a lovely little encounter in the red key area. Shame the map devolved into a key-and-switch search (with one tedious labyrinth area, although small). Not bad, not great. 6/10

MAP28
This was a fast-paced map indeed, mostly filled with fodder that I expended my now-overflowing plasma reserves at whilst running around damaging sectors before my radsuit ran out. Had to automap to recognise that there was a door in the red area with the two (helpful) arrows, but other than that it was straightforward. And not really as challenging as a penultimate level should be. 5/10

MAP29
This one's off to a great start indeed -- big red pentagram hovering ominously over enough rockets to penetrate a big rupture in the moon and enough megaspheres to survive it falling to Earth. And a teleporter, that surely leads to something epic, right? No. It's like E1M8 without the E1M8; just the end bit. I worked up to THIS; a big black void where Spider Masterminds peck at me and I die, finishing the level. This is like finding my dream woman in a package for Christmas, and when it comes to coitus her vagina explodes taking my mancannon with it. No. Sorry, I'm underwhelmed. 1/10

So I'm done. It was kinda fun. Kinda. Not so much the WAD, but talking about it here was the best part. Seriously.

It's been a blast so WHAT NEXT, GUYS? :D

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I fell behind thanks to a busy weekend, but at least I was able to finish playing this before we start playing CC4.

Map 21
The maps are getting fairly tough. Not much health to waste here, especially at the beginning half of the map. Not bad, but things like infinitely tall imps in a little holes in the ground don't work at all.

Map 22
Meh. Somewhat nice looking areas here but it's just really short and not very memorable. Having to jump into nukage with a doorway that is hard to notice without looking at automap is a poor idea as well.

Map 23
Quite boring. There are a lot of barrels here, but nothing interesting at all is made with the concept. Mainly it's just "enter the room, blow up the barrels and watch everyone die", It's also typically symmetric for the wad.

Map 24
This is the only map I had to use saves in. Having died once in the end because I hadn't taken the blue key, then making it to the end again on the next try and noticing that the exit bars are not open and not knowing why I just had to give up not using saves. Turns out I hadn't shot one of the switches in the maze area. Some interesting gameplay in the map, but there's just too much waiting involved: you have to wait for several lifts to go down or up and there's nothing to do in the meantime. At least there are no thin catwalks that you can easily fall down from.

Map 25
Another one of these "move fast so you don't run out of rad suits" type of maps. I kind of liked it in the end. It's not as symmetric either compared to most of the wad.

Map 26:
Another quite good looking map, with all those tight gloomy lit tunnels with low ceilings. Some fairly bullshitty traps though: having to jump next to a mancubus in a tight spot, which means certain death if you don't have a suitable weapon equipped and being teleported to a closet with damaging floor over and over again isn't much fun either, especially if you don't have the red key you need to get out from there. On the other hand, there are monsters teleporting behind you, which is something you have rarely seen in the wad and thus very refreshing.

Map 27:
Exceedingly mazy, though the gameplay isn't bad otherwise.

Map 28:
A good map, one of the best in the wad in fact. The wall you have to shoot in one of rooms is the only thing I really didn't like. Ok, so the room with a lot of teleporters and you can just telefrag all the sergeants is quite pointless as well, but I like the visual style of it, so it's forgiven.

Map 29:
Crap.

Overall:
Some nice ideas, but unfortunately the author obviously was much more interested in puzzles and didn'tt spend much time on monster placement or fights. I don't mind some switch hunts but doing that when you know there aren't going to be any more monsters teleporting in is quite boring. The symmetry is a really big problem too. I'll give this a 5/10. All in all, this was very much worth my time, despite the relatively low score I gave the set. Of course, my interest in early Doom mapping helps, so many others trying this may not be so forgiving. And yeah, sharing the experience here was a lot of fun.

EDIT: Also, glenzinho, the pic is awesome :)

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map 27 - managed to do this with no deaths from pistol start on first go, thats not to say there weren't a few hairy moments - the cyber start would be not so fun without that invulnerability, I liked the mad dash to get more ammo to finish him off - just about killed him before it wore off. A few vile surprises after that, with a touch of tedious mazes and backtracking to find all the keys. The red key stumped me for a while but was a good fight when found.

map 28 - this was a blast, lots of running and gunning and a little bit of hunting. That yellow key was a bit devious. Was disappointed not to face something big at the end, felt like it was building up to something. Maybe the last map will reveal an epic battle...

map 29 - oh. Ok... erm . right. I did manage to kill one boss but I gather the damaging floor was intended to make sure you couldn't win.

Well i guess that about sums up this whole wad for me, promising starts mostly followed by bullshit. There were some half decent maps in there but nothing that would bring me back for a replay. I also got the distinct impression the author was being intentionally annoying with a lot of it.

Bring on the next wad!

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Map27: Definitely one of the best so far. The gameplay is definitely the best so far. For the first time Doom II monsters are used quite liberally. Some of the fights are surprisingly difficult, especially the ones in the library area. It looks pretty damn nice too.

Map28: The best level in the wad. It has most of the megawad's best qualities but without its worst ones. Some of the architecture is really nice and trippy, like the blue room with all the teleporters. The gameplay is also good, with the usual rooms small encounters mixed in with some more intense stuff, like the red room. Also there's another one of those cool damaging floor gauntlets. The map ends with a surprisingly nice looking base area. Fortunately the usual "running around switch hunting after you've killed everything" is cut back this time.

Map29: The pentagram at the start looks great, but other than that it's just an anticlimactic ending.

And finally it's all over. Honestly for the most part I didn't enjoy playing this megawad. Some of the maps are decent, but for every one of those there's a few that are either mediocre or just plain bad. Kile's master levels were much better; they had funner gameplay and less pointless switch hunts. And even those were the worst ones in the package IMO.

Overall this is my least favorite of all the megawads that I've played, right below The Twilight Zone and Talosian Incident.

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Ultimately nothing in Klie's maps was that abrasive to me due to the level size (almost a proto-1024 due to the technical limits of Klie's computer) and the fact that most of the difficulty came from the environment, which I'm all for as long as it's not repetitive switch flips a la MAP03. I would have preferred he didn't update his original Doom maps, especially as the Spiderdemon showdown and E1M8 knockoff are lackluster map fillers, and the better levels show up toward the end of the originals.

Certainly, there have been much better megaWADs release since then, and TiC's Obituary - also from 1995 - is a good example of the kind of craftsmanship we look fondly upon from a contemporary viewpoint, not to mention Memento Mori, which had an initial release in '95. I still see a lot of raw appeal in Klie's mapset and find the kind of hyperbolic bitch sessions this WAD inspired in the thread amusing, to say the least.

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Just managed to get this done before DWMWC moves onto CC4...

MAP27

This could very well be my favourite of the whole megawad. It's certainly up there in terms of it's looks and for the most part it avoids the tedious switch hunts or wierd map flaws that have brought down other levels. My favourite part was the manc/rev fight and the only downsides was the maze but compared to previous maps it was fairly painless. I get the impression that if Klie made a sequel it would have been more along the lines of this map as the levels seemed to get gradually better and more refined and this for me is the apex of what the megawad does well.

MAP28

A fairly decent map soiled by the stupid damaging room with a hidden door. Those arrows misled me and, having already used the rad suit, decided to IDDQD on my two journeys back there to try and figure out how to get the yellow key. I don't remember any interesting fights but other than the trouble aquiring the yellow key and a brief struggle getting out of the start area (those bars made activation sounds, which misled me but (possibly) opened up the secret areas there wasn't anything the bugged me.

MAP29

An anti-climax. Klie misleads the player into expecting a big finale by providing several megaspheres, a RL, plenty of ammo and a huge pentangle only to teleport the player into a damaging area housing several cybs and spiderdemons. The player exits upon death,

I'm curious why Klie didn't end the megawad on MAP28 rather than bother with this level.

BF_THUD!

This was one of those megawads that works better in theory than in practice. Short, concept maps full of imagination and suprises at every turn that unfortunately are very hit and miss in terms of execution.

I'd heard the set pop up on these boards from time to time and I expected it to be right up my alley but I must be honest and say I would never have had the inclination to finish it if it wasn't for the club.

It still is a megawad worth experiencing in order to taste a bit of an uninhibited period of Doom mapping and maybe borrow some ideas that would feel fresh even in modern levels.

So not a classic in my opinion by any means but not without it's charms and certainly plenty to discuss. It could not be described as bland and I think that would have been one of Klie's design goals from the start.


Onto Community Chest 4 then!

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Thanks for participating everybody! The next topic will be up tomorrow, but I think we're going to start on the 18th to give everyone a fair shot at starting together since some people play earlier in the day than others.

kmxexii said:

Ultimately nothing in Klie's maps was that abrasive to me due to the level size


With as much complaining as I've done, I'd agree with this, which is why it's still a pretty fun experience.

purist said:

I'm curious why Klie didn't end the megawad on MAP28 rather than bother with this level.


This map really is a bit of a mystery... only Klie will know.

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