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Tormentor667

[Blade of Agony] Gameplay survey | p7

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Foreword
So why a WolfenDoom project? Well, I was always a big fan of Laz Rojas' work, especially Operation Arctic Wolf or Operation Rheingold. It felt like a real sequel to Wolfenstein 3D. Since then I always thought about sending B.J. Blazkowicz back myself on even more story-driven missions around the world, kicking Nazi's asses. Especially the thought of having various operations and making them all unique in terms of look, feel and gameplay was something that I have ever dreamt of. In times of Vanilla and 56K, things like that have never been even possible. Now that the technical limits are gone, anything is possible in some way or another, and that was the moment when I wanted to start off.

 

Story
It's 1944, and the war approaches its peak. The U.S. has joined the Allied forces, and the Soviets are pushing back the front in the east. The tides of war are turning, and Hitler's victory seems more and more beyond his grasp. But the Nazis, refusing to capitulate, have grown obsessed with human experiments and occult artifacts, in which they see a potential escape from their final Doom. The Allied leaders reject this possibility as nonsense; nonetheless, some still fear what the Führer might be up to. The situation is nebulous, however, and little is certain.

You are Cpt. William "B.J." Blazkowicz, an Allied spy, a fearless risk-taker, and the greatest soldier to ever take up arms in World War II. Your role has changed, though; you've retired from active duty, and now you spearhead operations as a systems analyst. You thought it would be the right choice--leading and motivating instead of doing the dirty work--but lately you've grown restless. At least until a few days ago, when you received an encrypted message from your old friend and comrade Cpt. Douglas Blake, calling you back to duty...

 

Features
Blade of Agony is much more than just a pastiche of the classic shooters that inspired it; the project will offer a unique experience. It also has many features not often seen in source port projects--Blade of Agony truly pushes GZDoom to its limits.

  • 7 playable and unique levels in Chapter One (over 20 in the full game)
  • Orchestra-quality game music
  • Voice acting and ambient soundscapes
  • A combination of low-poly models and sprite assets to create the perfect retro feeling
  • Devastating armaments from the battlefields of WWII
  • Interactive NPCs that support the twisted plot's progress and help you understand the game
  • Beautiful special effects (weather, elements, explosions, etc.)
  • Much, much more!

 

Participating
If you are interested in helping us out, the easiest way to do so is by making pull requests to the project's GitHub repository. The development repo is public, and we are happy to have any kind of help. We can't promise to implement every public change, but we'll have a thorough look at all of them, and we'll be thankful for any helpful improvements or suggestions.

 

Development History

can be read at the original thread over at https://forum.zdoom.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=47801 (no need to crosspost this)

 

"May I use resource x from your mod?"
It happened now for about a trillion times that people asked if they can use material from Blade of Agony. There are two answers on that: If it is original material exclusively developed for Blade of Agony by its authors, then clearly no (!), not until the final release of Blade of Agony which includes all 3 chapters. If it is material by other authors (for example elements from wildweasel's Nazis mod), ask the authors directly themselves. If you are not sure who made it, ask us or read the credits text file. I know that this WolfenDoom project borrowed a lot of resources from other games and projects, and we are happy to see our material of use for other modders in the future, but we simply don't want to spoil anything of it yet, that makes people think "Oh, I have seen this already before in a different mod than Blade of Agony" even though it has been exclusively created for our mod. I am sure people understand this.

 

Best regards,
Torm & Team

Official Webpage

Edited by Tormentor667

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Cool-looking. Maybe you could look at Wolfen3DGE for inspiration and resources.

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Just to make sure nobody misses something: The development continues in the official thread at ZDoom, so if you have requests, feedback or anything else, please get there :)

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Avoozl said:

Why is there a pot from Shadow Warrior in it?

Because Tormentor667 has always been like "add details first, ask questions later". :P

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Is that clip graphic from the Doom alpha? Somehow, that number font looks similar to it as well.

This looks cool so far.

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VGA said:

Cool-looking. Maybe you could look at Wolfen3DGE for inspiration and resources.


Doubtful, since Torm seems to use 64x64 sprites and go for the more realistic appearance. The original Wolf-esque sprites (as used in Wolfen3DGE) are more cartoony in comparison.

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The rocks at the very start look oddly simplistic, especially in the GL setting. The KDiZD rock sprites don't really blend in with their surroundings, and the flat rock walls with simple jaggy trim around the floor doesn't look too convincing or appealing IMO.

The resource kitbashing doesn't always work here IMO, particularly the use of detailed detailed 3D models alongside cartoony Wolfenstein sprites and Doom-resolution textures. The use of 3D models for detail also make it even stranger to see flat textures and sprites used to represent walls with pipes and other depth-having structures on them.

I feel like the interiors would really benefit either from more detailed textures (adding some subtle grit layers so they're less pristine and monochrome) or from more dramatic lighting contrast. Lighting would help the most. GZDoom's lighting can be a bit limiting, especially if you're mostly depending on dynamic lights, but the interior lighting here is very neutral and just sort of "there", which doesn't help the scenery really pop.

Layout-wise I'd love to see more use of vertical space and openness, and less of the corridor->door->room->door->corridor crawling that makes up the majority of the demo. It seems like nearly every area is a roughly 128-wide, 128-tall corridor that's connected to adjacent areas via doors, which all make for pretty monotonous play. The texture theme changes a bit from one area to the next, but the scale and shapes stay very consistent even as you get into the gray basement areas. There are some 3D ledges in one area, but even those are still squared-off, 128-wide, and without any threats coming from any direction other than directly in front of you.

It seems like nearly every fight's optimal solution is to camp around one of the countless doors that serve as bottlenecks between areas. Propping open some of the doors (or better yet, creating openings wider than 64 units) and providing multiple points of immediate entry for each section would allow for much more engaging combat, giving enemies more opportunities to wander around and catch you from behind, rather than always being fed through a single narrow doorway in front of you.

Also, some of the big flaming pots are clipping into nearby walls.

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Having watched the whole video, I agree that the gameplay seems little more than a linear series of rooms and corridors, to an extent noticeably worse than The Refinery. The above post otherwise says what I would say.

Also, you might want to make sure you've got your door locks set up properly before making a public demonstration video. Just saying. You might also want to make sure you don't have to use the "resurrect" command to complete your own map. At least use your architecture as cover, for example, rather than just standing there and letting the mad doctor stick you with his syringes. Oh, and this is minor, but if you're going to take the time out to demonstrate the ability to turn the lights on and off, at least make sure the light switches animate. As it is, all of this makes your work look sloppy. Please be more careful.

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It seems like a faithful "fan sequel" to WolfenDoom. Similar design philosophy but nicer looking and with more cool features. A non-centered status bar face feels kind of weird in Doom engine though.

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Looks kinda neat, except maybe the KDiZD rocks should be recolored a bit to match the rock texture by the beach. And why are the sleeping beds always on the left hand side whenever you enter a room. ;_; And there's always a desk right in the middle.. The room reuse is a little much.

Other than that it looks and sounds pretty fun.

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First of all, thanks for your feedback so far, very useful stuff!

@TheCupboarf - Well, it's some kind of barrack/hotel so having rooms with a similar layout made sense to me. For the rocks I will definitely recolor these.

@TheGreenHerring - Thanks for those tipps, it was the very first time that I made a video with Fraps, I definitely need to take care in the future in terms of details. I will fix the switches, everything else is already working. Concerning the linearity of the map: It's the very first mission and I wanted to keep that as simple as possible so there Is enough space to improve from mission to mission.

@esselfortium - Thanks as well, one thing though before I go into detail: My main goal with this project is to carry over the spirit and feel of the original WolfenDoom operations from Laz Rojas. I know that this isn't everyone's taste but it's something I liked a lot and what I want to adapt and improve. Concerning the mixture of low-poly models and sprites/textures from Wolfenstein I don't agree as well. In my eyes the combination worked well in Enjays Burghead and to me it feels good here as well, but maybe thats a question of taste. Though the tipps for the gameplay department are pretty good and I will take care of these in the next mission :)

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The others all said pretty much what I might say, but I have to add that I'm looking forward to this even if it's not completely my style of gameplay. I hope the later maps are more non-linear and feature some interesting combat setups. It's looking pretty good though. :)

Do make sure everything's balanced nicely though - that surgeon boss had like 3x too much health, heh.

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Reminds me of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Would be amusing to have all the hanging corpse decorations dressed as indiana jones maybe

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This looks awesome. You've always been one of my favorite PWAD authors so it can be no less than fantastic when it's finished. Wolfenstein 3D was the first FPS I ever played, on my old Tandy 286, and it led to a life-long love of the genre. Been reading MASTERS OF DOOM so I'm looking to scratch that Doom itch again after taking a break from Doom wads for about a year or two.

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Download (updated on May 10th)
The latest beta can be downloaded here (beta v0.95), it's still a work-in-progress release, so we are looking forward to your feedback, suggestions and bugtracks.

"Changelog" - What's new in beta 0.95?

Increased treasure count on all maps (200 - 400 coins)
Fixed non-friendly chars in the intermap
Improved the briefing texts in the intermap
Improved the radio messages in the missions
Jukebox is now controlled via ZSDF
Fixed the "Project Totengräber" blood splat
Increased scaling of nazis (from 1.2 to 1.25)
Removed the "infrared" trivia
Removed the click sounds of radioactive barrels
Darren has now a last name, so does Ryan have a surname.
Improved the menue (moved options around)
Fixed automap overlappings of SBARINFO
Changed drop ratios for weapons in all soldier DECORATE
Changed the Prisoner behaviour in C1M6 a bit (ZSDF)
Toggleable reloading (automatic or manual, boa options)
Scalable recoil (boa options)
Ejecting brass/shells
Added enemy rotations for various actors (attack, pain)
Smoother movement for enemies
Extended map for Operation: Speerspitze (C1M1)
Intermission map dialogues have now mugshots for all NPCs
(special thanks to Ed the Bat for most of the gameplay- and codefixes)

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That looks and sounds pretty damn impressive. One thing I noticed with earphones is the noise of the player footsteps sounds like its coming from someone following a few paces behind you.

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