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invictius

wad designers, do you do this?

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"Oh, I need a blue key" *runs around looking* "Where IS that damn key?" *considers checking the wad in an editor since this is only the first map with literally 5 sectors* *eventually goes up to door and tries to use it, opens* "Oh, it doesn't need a key, they just decided to use the key outline for that door".

Really, really annoying, and I hope nobody does it deliberately.

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Are you sure that's DOORBLU and not LITEBLU4? You're using a texture mod, so I can't really tell, but I know DOORBLU doesn't tile that many times in that height.

I see your point though, most people probably would have thought the same thing.

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Megalyth said:

Are you sure that's DOORBLU and not LITEBLU4? You're using a texture mod, so I can't really tell, but I know DOORBLU doesn't tile that many times in that height.

I see your point though, most people probably would have thought the same thing.


It is indeed LITEBLU4, I'd have to stop using hi-res textures to avoid this happening again, wouldn't I? I was completely ignorant to issues such as this when using texture mods, I just assumed the replacements would be identical. DOORBLU does look confusing as well, though.

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mouldy said:

One I hate is people using the face switches everywhere as decoration


How about switches that you have to shoot? That makes little sense.

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mouldy said:

One I hate is people using the face switches everywhere as decoration


I agree, but there's a lot of that in doom.wad so I can see why people might. They're nice textures, too.

invictius said:

How about switches that you have to shoot? That makes little sense.


It's a useful gameplay function though. Coloured lights around doors or switches as normal textures is purely aesthetics.

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invictius said:

Really, really annoying, and I hope nobody does it deliberately.


I don't think designers annoy players deliberately. At least, they shouldn't.

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I still need to create my first WAD, but one of my ideas is to have a whole episode dedicated to David Lynch, in which absent blue keys will have some importance.

And red rooms, too.

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I've been wanting to make a map like this for a long time. :) I think it's a very funny idea: the player will explore lots of areas, won't find anything, will be running in circles for like 15 minutes. Then just out of complete desperation they will try to open that door and... it will work. I think I would laugh out loud if this story happened to me.

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It sounds hilarious on paper, but I'm sure if such a map was made and released you'd get nothing but countless variations of the same catch-all makes-me-sound-knowledgeable phrase "this is just bad design".

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This is sort of unrelated, sorry but uh:
Wad designers do you do this? Do you put a medikit right in the middle of a hallway, a narrow hallway, so there's no way to walk around it so you go back to get if need be? Not so bad if you're down to say fifty health, but if you have ninety seven health still left, it's annoying. Of course, you can always turn on noclip and walk through the thing if you feel like, but...Just sayin'.

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I really don't mind because, in first place, is not that common. And because I know some mappers do it, if I see a door which may require a key, I try to open it even if I don't have the key; it only takes me one or two seconds.

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Da Werecat said:

Or a soul sphere on a floor button that you have to activate, even if you're still 183% healthy. Grr.

What annoys me even more is when a mapper makes an easy-to-accidentally-pick-up, or unavoidable, chainsaw in a level that also has a Berzerk Back. In my E2M2-E1M2 mashup for switcheroom I had to put both of these power-ups in the same map, for consistency, but I very deliberately put the chain in an alcove off to the side, so players could choose to avoid it.

Re medikits/Soulspheres: I don't think I've ever done this, but I can see its utility from a design perspective. Say a wad desiger wants to make sure that the player is at a certain minimum health level, before forcing them over a sawtooth, where they won't be able to go back and get these items for at least a few rooms. It's a tricky design choice, but when it's done right it can be a nice, fun challenge.

As an aside, whenever I use sawtooths, I try to make a switch later on that will level out the obstruction, or raise some stairs, so that the map flow is restored after my little tricksy interlude. ;-)

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baronofheck82 said:

This is sort of unrelated, sorry but uh:
Wad designers do you do this? Do you put a medikit right in the middle of a hallway, a narrow hallway, so there's no way to walk around it so you go back to get if need be?


Or say, you could have a start room (in the very first map) with a little sort of elevated tower to the side, and you put a green armor in the tower, and you put armor bonuses on the path leading to the armor...

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schwerpunk said:

Holy shit, who knew someone had so much to say about such a simple concept. I wonder if there's equally long articles about "room", "floor", "window" or maybe even "corridor" in there :D

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When in doubt, use the automap (and a source port with the relevant feature!)

edit to add:

schwerpunk said:

What annoys me even more is when a mapper makes an easy-to-accidentally-pick-up, or unavoidable, chainsaw in a level that also has a Berzerk Back. In my E2M2-E1M2 mashup for switcheroom I had to put both of these power-ups in the same map, for consistency, but I very deliberately put the chain in an alcove off to the side, so players could choose to avoid it.

This particular annoyance is avoidable if you use an engine with Boom weapon preferences - just put the preference of the fist higher than that of the chainsaw.

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Antroid said:

Holy shit, who knew someone had so much to say about such a simple concept. I wonder if there's equally long articles about "room", "floor", "window" or maybe even "corridor" in there :D

Wow, you read fast.

I know there are some pretty in-depth discussions of the term "room" on these very forums. No doubt, there are also discussions of the differences between hallways, archways, portals, passable windows, and entryways.

As for sawtooths, it's one of those map concepts that everyone is aware of, but rarely think about. Personally, I didn't really take serious notice of this feature until I read the above article. Now I see it everywhere, and try to make much more conscious -- and calculated -- use of this controversial flow-blocker.

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Gez said:

Or say, you could have a start room (in the very first map) with a little sort of elevated tower to the side, and you put a green armor in the tower, and you put armor bonuses on the path leading to the armor...


This sounds strangely familiar somehow... :P



On Topic: I hate, hate, HATE IT when mappers do that! While playing through a test version of NOVA, there was a map that did that. There was a door with a red key border around it. I didn't have the red key yet, so I ignored the door. I spent a long ass time looking for that key. Finally, I gave up and tried the door out of desperation, and it opened. I was quite upset by that.

We have come to associate those colored borders with required keys. It has been ingrained in us since E1M2. When someone plays a trick like this, it makes me want to punch the mapper in the face. It flies in the face of everything the IWADs taught us, and I swear that when a mapper does this, they are either thinking evil thoughts, or not thinking at all.

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schwerpunk said:

Wow, you read fast.

I... haven't actually read any of that :D I just saw the amount of text and went "Hah, this is ridiculous!".

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Antroid said:

It sounds hilarious on paper, but I'm sure if such a map was made and released you'd get nothing but countless variations of the same catch-all makes-me-sound-knowledgeable phrase "this is just bad design".


It is. Flagging a door to appear to be keylocked will give the impression you need a key to open it, unless the area before it is literally one or two rooms. It's completely expected that people who have played Doom will look for the key first.

Even then, why bother doing it if it doesn't require said key?

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I think the only excusable situation to make this kind of door is if there is a secret inside AND no such key on the map. Heh, that would be an interesting secret.

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Marcaek said:

Even then, why bother doing it if it doesn't require said key?

For the lulz? It would obviously be a sort of joke/troll map. Of course that wouldn't work well in a normal map. However the "bad design" phrase doesn't really apply to this case, but I'm willing to bet people would still use it because it sounds like the person knows what he's talking about if he uses that phrase. It's a bit overused, sometimes someone just doesn't like some aspect and still goes "bad design" as if he has the last say on the matter... It's especially grating to me because I like a lot of things in maps other people almost universally frown upon. The politically correct way would be "design not for everyone" or something.

Darch said:

I think the only excusable situation to make this kind of door is if there is a secret inside AND no such key on the map. Heh, that would be an interesting secret.

I had a sort of related idea during a let's play before, the idea consisted of having locked doors on the map that you can never open because the key for them isn't even there. It could be made obvious by the automap (having them just be walls) or by having no secrets or items or monsters left while they're still unopened. I personally would've appreciated such a trick once or twice, but I think I know the default responce you'd see to something like that ;D

...Actually I do have an instance of that in my zdoom project-in-making, but in my case it's made obvious by the nature of the areas that the doors appear in (they can be only visited once, during a linear part before the player sees any keys or really any gameplay happens, and are completely disjointed from the rest of the map).

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Antroid said:

For the lulz? It would obviously be a sort of joke/troll map. Of course that wouldn't work well in a normal map. However the "bad design" phrase doesn't really apply to this case, but I'm willing to bet people would still use it because it sounds like the person knows what he's talking about if he uses that phrase. It's a bit overused, sometimes someone just doesn't like some aspect and still goes "bad design" as if he has the last say on the matter... It's especially grating to me because I like a lot of things in maps other people almost universally frown upon. The politically correct way would be "design not for everyone" or something.


Not bothered by political correctness here. If you want to put it in a joke map fine whatever, as for shitmaps please try to avoid making those.

Could you provide a better example of the flaws of calling such a choice bad design that isn't an attempt at arrogance shaming or strawmen?

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I have always considered not marking key-requiring doors bad practice. I also consider using traditionally key-indicating textures to simply frame doors and switches to be bad practice but to a lesser extent.

Textures such as LITEBLU4, however, do muddy the water somewhat. Is it a key indicating texture or is it just a blue light? Unfortunately, it regularly gets used for both and so, when playing, I tend to check doors bordered with it as a matter of course. However, this can occasionally mean that I open a door to a route that I didn't want to go down just yet when I try the door and find that it was just a blue light and not a key indicator (so the door opens).

I'm sure that I will have been guilty of mapping-in some confusing signals in the past but now I do try and stick to the known key indicators and variants of them for telling the player that a key is required rather than something potentially more misleading.

To reiterate, however, not marking a key requiring door is, IMO, very bad practice and far worse than confusingly marking a non-key door (again IMO).

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Marcaek said:

Could you provide a better example of the flaws of calling such a choice bad design that isn't an attempt at arrogance shaming or strawmen?

It's pretty simple. Things like that could very well have a legitimate purpose within the wad, and the fact that we haven't thought of one on the spot doesn't mean that it's completely impossible. It, like many other things that fall subject to the dreaded phrase, is not and never will be universally "bad design".

Although it might just be my great annoyance at the phrase itself. In my book, the only times when it truly applies are a completely different level of stupidity, kinda like that one place in Doom 2 map28 where you had to shoot a random wall to progress, if I remember it correctly. However it gets used on every occasion, applicable or not. Having clearly no key around and a door marked with key indicators as the only unexplored path is quite a different category from stuff like that, in my opinion. But, honestly, even something THAT bad can be justified in some insane way, you really have to examine and evaluate a particular instance and decide if you like and approve the choice or not instead of pretending to know that there's no way something can be done in a way that anyone will ever enjoy on some level. Overusing the phrase is really just an attempt to add weight to one's opinion. A healthy dose of arrogance shaming is well deserved in many cases of it, IMO.

I don't think even I ever called stuff I plainly hate in doom maps bad design, and if I did I wish to apologize and take my words back to replace them with a more opinion-friendly wording.

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Antroid said:

It's pretty simple. Things like that could very well have a legitimate purpose within the wad, and the fact that we haven't thought of one on the spot doesn't mean that it's completely impossible. It, like many other things that fall subject to the dreaded phrase, is not and never will be universally "bad design".


When someone comes up with a decent usage, maybe I'll agree. Until then, I don't know one example of it being used well so there isn't a good case for it. Suggestions?

Antroid said:

Overusing the phrase is really just an attempt to add weight to one's opinion. A healthy dose of arrogance shaming is well deserved in many cases of it, IMO.


See maybe if the rest of your post held up to scrutiny, this would have some weight. Who's "overusing" the phrase? I think my usage of it was perfectly justified.

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