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rd.

Small mapping decisions that you appreciate(d).

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scifista42 said:

I prefer wads that change sprites and sounds of the Nazis if they use them in normal maps.

Not to derail the thread or anything, but I'd like to know more about this. I'm just beginning to dabble in mapmaking, and I like the idea of finding/fighting Nazis in Hell. Why is this looked down on so much? Does it have something to do with their graphics? Is it simply an overused gimmick? Do people use them without any sort of reason why?

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Janus3003 said:

I'd like to know more about this. I'm just beginning to dabble in mapmaking, and I like the idea of finding/fighting Nazis in Hell. Why is this looked down on so much? Does it have something to do with their graphics?

They generally don't fit between the other monsters and in the serious Doom-like environments. They break the remains of thematic immersion Doom has, aka "I'm fighting demons from a hell dimension, cool... Wait, WTF are SSNazis doing here? It's like from a cheap parody."

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I like it when nazis are used in serious maps, e.g. in wads by Eye Del Cul. It's a cool monster.

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The Nazi would fit better in conjunction with the other types of Wolf nazis imo. On their own, or worse with Doom monsters, they appear to be out of place.

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Their art style is also different from the Doom monsters. They don't look like they belong in this game. Which appears to be intentional, actually - they exist in Doom 2 only to take part in exotic secret levels as a homage to idSoftware's other game.

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That all makes sense. I'll be sure to keep it in mind whenever I finally start getting maps put together.
Thanks, everyone.

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I appreciate when the mapper puts work into lighting and light contrast between various areas in a map. Similarly, variation in heights, texturing, design, combat etc. By the way, John Romero himself said that he considered contrast to be important and that he tried to implement it wherever possible in his maps (2:05 - 2:55 in this video).

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It's cool when you put always repeatable teleport linedefs for monsters in closets, even for single monsters in single closets. So many potential Max demos got wasted because some mappers didn't do it. WR teleport. W1 teleport. Get it?

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A small but neat thing I found in the wad Revolution!: Map 5 ends with the player jumping into a well surrounded by inescapable nukage. To my surprise, the nukage uses Sector type 11 so the level ends even if the player manages to miss, just with the consequence of starting the next level with low health. It's an interesting compromise.

I also like when Partial Invisibility is placed in areas where the effect is more useful, such as sections with lots of hitscanner enemies.

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Janus3003 said:

That all makes sense. I'll be sure to keep it in mind whenever I finally start getting maps put together.
Thanks, everyone.

They are missing rotations, too. You could easily change their STUPID sounds, find a sprite set of full rotations for them in the ZDoom forum and maybe even recolor them to make them sinister. You can also make them more dangerous by giving them more damage.

If you do this, please do it with Dehacked :-D

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The problem with self referencing sectors is that monsters don't acknowledge the player when he is in them, which makes them a little impractical for gameplay purposes.

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?
I don't know about you but monsters keep attacking me when I'm standing on that bridge. Maybe they can find me because I smell.

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Here is a wonderful thing, I absolutely love it: putting activation lines in front of keyed bars, so that you don't have to aim exactly at the bars to open them. I will always do this now. And of course you'll never see 32-wide switches in my future maps: these are a serious crime against speedrunning.

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Memfis said:

Here is a wonderful thing, I absolutely love it: putting activation lines in front of keyed bars, so that you don't have to aim exactly at the bars to open them. I will always do this now. And of course you'll never see 32-wide switches in my future maps: these are a serious crime against speedrunning.

Always make sure to add some floor or ceiling height variation on the activation line, otherwise it doesn't show its color on the automap, which is why I disliked the trick in many maps where I've seen it used.

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Oh, didn't think about it. Well, I leave the action on the bars too in any case, so it will be seen.

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Memfis said:

Here is a wonderful thing, I absolutely love it: putting activation lines in front of keyed bars, so that you don't have to aim exactly at the bars to open them. I will always do this now. And of course you'll never see 32-wide switches in my future maps: these are a serious crime against speedrunning.


Holy shit, that makes so much sense.

I don't think it would hurt to include the activation line and make the bars usable too.

edit: i need to read posts right above mine.

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Definitely agree with Memfis' contribution. I've done this myself, but hadn't thought of dipping the ceiling 1px to get the key colour to show up on automap.

Speaking of automaps, I've always appreciated a clean one. When I'm mapping, I try to my hardest to hide lines unless they are useful to see when trying to navigate via the automap (raised areas, stairs, etc). Here's an example of what I mean from one my earlier vanilla maps (GUT.wad):

IDBEHOLD A view


IDDT view


I think automap hygiene is doubly important when you've got a computer map item.

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In deathmatch maps, I appreciate the combination of fast gameplay and close-in encounters that result from walk-triggered turbo/fast doors and, when approached from the bottom, lifts.

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I have an awesome idea. You know that bug when mancubus projectiles fly through walls? It is responsible for some of the most bullshitty deaths in history. Well, what if you put additional dummy sectors everywhere in the void to block them? That should significantly minimize the chances of that crap happening. Like: http://s21.postimg.org/mh1mkw2c7/fuckmanco.png

I'm kind of seriously considering doing this in the future.

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An 8-units wide strip of a 0-height sector, positioned 8 units behind every solid wall, should be foolproof enough to stop the projectiles.

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I like when a trap provides a feeling of suspense before it happens rather than actually jump scaring me. Like a sleeping cyberdemon enclosed in a glass case of self referencing sectors that you know is gonna be awoken later, or archviles facing the opposite direction, or a free item in plain sight with nothing around that you just know is gonna trigger something ugly when ya grab it. Traps where a normal looking hallway with monsters already in it is used as a consequence for moving around the map doesn't make me say "ooh didn't see that coming! Nice one, ya got me!" It is instead immediately followed with frustration and reduced respect for the level designer.

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^I see what you mean, but it really makes you sound like that you only respect such level designers who make all traps predictable. Is it, to some extent, true? :)

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Mostly.

It sounds silly on paper because it sounds like your taking the fun out of surprising the player, but when someone is playing the map, they can expect a trap to happen without knowing exactly how the trap will operate. You don't know what monsters will appear, where you will be allowed to run (via doors that shut behind you) if they will be revealed by a closet, or an instantly raised floor, teleported in your face, or teleported in various locations, etc.

There are plenty Doom monsters that when activated at the same time, will cause a serious problem for the player, even if the player has seen it many times before. The pressure and excitement of enduring the trap will still be there. Traps can still be exciting even if you are aware of them ahead of time, you can tell because wads like Plutonia and Alien Vendetta are still hard for people long after they've been released.

With the exception of very short high-intensity maps, I don't consider dying to be a crucial learning experience or have any effect on making the map feel fun, unless there was a hint that I should have been aware of, like a pile of player corpses or something along those lines that should have given it away.

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I know the feelings, and I agree. It's comfortable to play that way, if you play "casually". And I totally agree that dying is unfun, particularly cheap dying is a bad mechanic to teach the player to learn from his mistakes. Still, I've enjoyed Mouldy's maps when I've played them for the first time, and many of them completely surprised me by sudden traps at moments when I didn't expect anything - and this is actually one of the main reasons why I respect Mouldy's mapping skill.

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I like to differentiate between jump shocks (no warning, relatively harmless) and ambushes (telegraphed, potentially lethal).

I think it's important that when the player dies, they believe it was their own fault. Of course, a lot depends on tone. I appreciate that Plutonia for example communicates that it's going to be full of 'dick moves' right from the start by showing the player a single immortal chaingunner.

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I don't like being locked into death with no warning, but I have no issue with maps that release monsters behind you now and then to encourage more aggressive play and reduce the tendency toward camping.

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Memfis said:

I have an awesome idea. You know that bug when mancubus projectiles fly through walls? It is responsible for some of the most bullshitty deaths in history. Well, what if you put additional dummy sectors everywhere in the void to block them? That should significantly minimize the chances of that crap happening. Like: http://s21.postimg.org/mh1mkw2c7/fuckmanco.png

I'm kind of seriously considering doing this in the future.


After you've made them you could retrofit them as control sectors for moving floors and stuff too :)

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