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dobu gabu maru

The DWmegawad Club Plays: CC4 (Starting JENESIS Oct. 1st!)

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MAP28: Jeez this is one hell of map. It’s a large, detailed, devious and hellish slog through two separate satanic temples, with probably the most fearsome and aggressive final battle out of the whole megawad.

Gameplay wise, this level is great. It starts off slow, pitting low level enemies at you as fodder for your SG, but the difficulty has somewhat of an exponential curve, as right around the red key area is where the map reminds you you’re in hell... I almost ran out of ammo at that section and was forced to play more conservatively from that point on. I’d say about 90% of the traps are fair game, leaving you with enough room to predict them, but a few (especially the ones involving archviles) leave you with little room to maneuver if you’re a bit slow to react. Most of the battles are pretty fun though and there were some pretty close moments (like in the blue key door with the AV and two barons). The architecture is also great, never feeling repetitive but keeping with a consistent theme. Some of the caverns and halls are pretty astounding... I’ve always like the red-on-black theme.

Playing through this map reminded me just how useful sprinkling enemies throughout a level can be. You keep the player constantly engaged while building up their confidence, only to flip the table on them when you warp some top tier baddies right behind them. I also like how the level is mostly linear but keeps allowing you to check out many other areas, even if you can’t fully explore them just yet.

I felt like the finale could be tweaked a little more. It’s probably exactly what the author wants, but I feel like it’s a little too brutal for any first timers, as it took me around 7-8 tries to finally get out of that space. I like the idea of keeping the walls close to you that you have to tactfully use your RL to thin the hoard if you desire, but it’s feels impractical other than at the start. Also any misfire you have with the SSG is likely to cost you your life as the hoard surrounds you.

Glad to see the difficulty in CC4 really taking itself seriously near the penultimate levels though. This is one of the best levels of the whole mapset.

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MAP29: This level is an excellent compliment to the last one, almost as much as MAP27 was to MAP26. Continuing with the hell temple theme, MAP29 opens up with somewhat of a gambit, forcing you to zip past two archviles in hope for the SSG and more ammo to battle them with. After that point, you spend most of your time fighting off relatively large numbers of enemies in spacey arenas, zipping about to and fro while atomizing demons with your BFG.

Overall I had a blast with this map, and felt like it was the right length. My favorite part was climbing around the canyon area a la Hexen, and I appreciated all the detail that went into this one. The level opening up to provide pathways to earlier parts of the map was very reminiscent of MAP32.

My biggest gripe is the overabundance of archviles. Although they’re my favorite Doom monster, this map tends to throw them in with the hordes as if they’re imps. In a couple of areas where they popped up there was no immediate discernible cover, leading me to take a blast just to ensure that I kill them right away, which I felt was a nuisance. Also, funny enough, there is too much health in this map as well. I felt like ammo was pretty well balanced, never giving you too much but also never starving you, but health seemed to be thrown at you in spades, especially after you picked up a supercharge or megasphere. It’s strangely missing from the end of the level though.

Cool, slaughtery map.

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MAP30: Sealy makes sure that we’re not out of the furnace yet though, turning up the heat for this climactic finale. This is a map with another rough beginning (at least from a pistol start), bathing you in lava and demons no matter where you go. The red key path was probably the highlight of the level, containing a swathe of angles you can die from. Something I really appreciated was the first cyberdemon you see. His pedestal is in such a great spot that Sealy fools the player into thinking they can just skirt past him initially, but no matter where you go that overlord is likely to harass you.

Past the red+blue gates is nothing too special though, as you can easily backpedal away from the hall or revanants and lead them into a bottleneck. IoS fight is pretty standard fare, keeping the traditional elements of the original fight but with a less punishing design. In a cinematic moment, I fired the final rocket into the demon’s brain as a caco fireball ended my life, thus closing out CC4 with a heroic sacrifice.

I’m glad Sealy kept the teeth for this level, as a lot of MAP30s can be rather uninspired, or too short/direct. Great finale.

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And with that, CC4 is done (for me at least)! Although I’m not finished with CC3, I feel like I can confidently say that this is the best of the bunch, keeping each map consistent with a superb level of quality. Even the more bare-bones maps still focused on gameplay, meaning that no matter which map you skip to, you’re bound to have some fun. And that’s what I really enjoyed, is that the only lull maps were still good/great maps, and I never felt too aggravated or upset at any level I was going through. Great job guys.

Favorite: MAP24

Least Favorite: MAP07

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map 28
pistol start on HMP, 2 deaths

This map is forgiving about permitting progress and playing without saves is more of an endurance run. Even on this lower difficulty, there are some tricky areas like the red door battle (it was one of my deaths), and some sneaky archviles. Then there is the final fight where a save beforehand really helps maintain sanity. Secrets are well concealed; I only found two.

Interesting moments:
- Running onto a bridge as it raises. It has speedrun applications too.
- SSG on a raised pedastol with a conspicuous key; totally predicted the appearance of hellknights here like in Requiem's map 4.
- Pain elementals in open area are a pain. I exploit the feature that monsters can't enter the bridge sectors in this section so it's only a test of patience.
- Archvile and pain elemental at once, who to kill first...?

Died on next set of monsters. Overall like

Map 21
pistol start on HMP, savegames used

This one takes quite the time investment to take in with my own completion time running near two hours. Chose to play on a lower difficulty to focus on the journey. While it's rare visuals catch my attention in Doom maps, they do here. My jaw dropped at the halfway point and the huge area revealed there.
As for gameplay comments, what I remember most is lots of faraway monsters firing across large spaces. There's little danger of quick deaths unless cybers are present though it's easy to run into a projectile that I failed to notice. I took quite a bit of pleasure in utilizing infighting to take out faraway snipers.

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Bumping this thread with an update of what wads to play for the next month or so. Next to each megawad is the votes accrued so far.

================================
Jenesis - 5
Coffee Break - 3
2002ADO - 2
Memento Mori - 2
Requiem - 1
Sparta - 1
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We're open to other suggestions, but generally I think it's a good idea to choose smaller megawad, or one with shorter levels to balance out CC4. I haven't played Jenesis so I don't know how long the maps last, but it seems like the wad we're heading towards.

Also, is October 1st okay for everyone? By the time we reach the end of October, we should have some new megawads out and ready to go. We'll probably be doing a map a day again too.

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Jenesis' maps are fairly short overall, but obviously they get larger as the megawad progresses. I don't see each map taking much more than 10 minutes to complete (a couple may take longer), because most of the layouts are pretty linear overall.

Also, if it does get accepted, you might want to load the fix wad alongside the /idgames release - this just cleans up a few minor issues. :)

EDIT: ***PLEASE REDOWNLOAD THIS*** to get some additional fixes on top of the existing ones.

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I actually started re-playing MM a little while ago, so replaying it would work out nicely for me :)

But I'm fine with whatever we choose to do. If it's gameplay I don't enjoy (like switch hunting or puzzle-based design) then I'll simply skip the wad and wait for the next one.

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I think Jenesis won our next playthrough attention. Starting October 1st, we'll be starting that, unless anyone has any objections.

Thanks for participating guys, and congrats to the handful of us that made it through!

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Jenesis eh?

Couple Pointers:

EDIT: If you have Jenesis3.wad (not the newest version) - there is a bug on Map30.

Also, part 1 (Map11) and part2 (Map20) have maps NOT in the full version. I'd recommend playing them anytime through the end of Map27 through the end of Map29 of the full version.

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Which is the definitive Jenesis WAD to use, then? If linked to one, we can all have the same experience. Not that I'm hinting or anything.

(Could go to idgames, but I want to make sure from someone who knows that I'm getting the right one)

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If you guys want a break, Obituary from the Moellers is another one of those '95 megaWADs with only about 17 single-player maps with new enemies and weapons. The only problem is getting it running as the process is arcane compared to contemporary mapsets.

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