Estranged - 32 level Boom megawad - idgames release

well I did it:

MAP29 - I played so well here that I don't remember taking any damage until the very end. love the nonlinear layout and the combat in this map. music was very weird though. great map.

MAP30 - well I played it, and managed through after a few tries, but I obviously didn't like it at all. gonna have to disagree with Memfis here, there should be some teleporters that would help in case I fell down into the lava. having barely any means you're fucked unless you skedaddle over to the very starting point. I think there should be a few faraway teleporters.

now, when I played this I ran past most of the monsters, but there was one very noticeable block, and it was the lift that leads up to the hell knight platform. I ended up taking a ton of revenant rockets to the face with almost no way of dodging them. maybe I coulda killed them sooner but when you have a ton of other projectiles and monsters after me I am forced to run from most of them.

yeah, that silent teleporter needs some fixing.

the Icon of Sin's monster spawner is facing eastward, meaning that if I move around the pillar on the left side, it won't see me and won't start spawning monsters until after I enter the teleporter at the bottom. it should face southward so that it will always trigger and start spawning.

overall, I enjoyed most of this megawad, but there's obviously still some things to fix.

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Thought I'd give this a playthrough. I use Zandronum and I'll be doing continuous UV.

Map 1: Cacodemons and Revenants already? I know the Chainsaw is an oft-disliked weapon, but it helps deal with those very nicely. The Berserk pack is nice if you're low on health but I was on 100/100 by the time I got there. The punching power may be better suited earlier in the map.

Map 2: The Baron at the end feels a bit out of place (unless the secret is a SSG) as it doesn't really seem to serve much purpose. You can easily run by it if you want, and with no decent weapons yet it is just a timesink for anyone who wants to UV-Max this map. If it's serving as the "I'm the final enemy of the map" role, a Hell Knight would do just the same thing but without the tedium. I really liked the section before and after the Partial Invisibility.

Will get to the rest soon, but I've enjoyed the first 2 maps so far.

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I've updated this, the link in the op gives the newest version. I've added multiplayer starts, done a bit of balancing here and there and fixed some of the bugs including some items not appearing on the easier difficulties and tried to make it so that the maps are smoother on coop.

Thanks for all the feedback so far, keep it coming, when I built my maps I wanted to create maps that looked good to me and gameplay has always been something that I felt I had to add on afterwards, I have always found it difficult to judge if a map is fun to play. But thanks to some of the feedback in this thread I feel that I'm improving a lot on that front and hopefully if this mapset is used in Zdaemon survival night then I can get more of a feel as to what needs to be changed.

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As promised, we will be playing the first part of this wad plus the secret maps in ZD TNS this Thursday. More details, like the starting time, can be found in either the ZD Thread or the DW Thread. Hope to see you there :)

EDIT: Do come to the Euro session, the US session is not exactly being tended to these days although the US server will be set up.

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Ok well I downloaded the new version and played through the first 2 maps again.

Map 3: My comments about the previous map are only reinforced by this one. I enjoyed the layout and the fights, but you now get a Rocket Launcher and are killing enemies weaker than Barons. It makes the one in the previous map look even more out of place.

Map 4: There doesn't seem to be an escape if you fall off the right side of the yellow door bridge (as you look at the yellow door), so a teleporter or something wouldn't go amiss there. I'm not the biggest fan of death exits in general. I accept how they can be used to make mini "episodes" in a megawad but seeing one on map 4? I really didn't like it here, in part because...

Map 5: ... this map would be a lot more playable if you had some ammo carried over from the previous map. I didn't mind the start so much, but you could easily get trapped in with no ammo to fight your way out. You don't actually get access to anything you don't already have from previous maps here, which to me makes the death exit even more pointless. The Cyberdemon fight is slightly tedious as you have to RL/SSG it to death which takes ages, but it's not too bad.

Map 6: I wasn't too keen on the very crowded Baron/Revenant fight, but I really enjoyed the rest of the map.

Map 7: I really enjoyed the big fights in this map. I'd killed everything by the end of the map, but I couldn't get to the exit for some reason. (I assume it was supposed to lower or steps were supposed to raise)

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Although having finished the end of that map again, this time steps did raise when I killed all the Arachnatrons.

Map 8: This is a really chaotic start for pistol only, not quite as challenging if you're playing continuously. I liked the classic "three keys, three routes to take" aspect to the map. The ambush on the yellow key didn't feel that threatening because you can easily escape up the lift. Maybe some timed bars in front of it to at least force you to stay and fight for a while.

Map 9: Even continuously, this map has quite a challenging start. The Arch Vile trap felt a little cheap because it was very easy to get overwhelmed surrounded given how quickly Arch Viles can move. The first time round I got trapped and with no PG/BFG to blast my way out, got killed very easily. Couldn't find either of the secrets on this map, though I'm sure the MegaArmour is one of them.

Map 10: Hmm. The huge ambush is quite unfair in my opinion. Even with the PG, it's very difficult to kill the Arch Viles and it's also very difficult to make a break for the exit from that area without taking substantial damage. (On 100/0 you'd need a lot of luck to make it out alive it seems to me) A Green Armor with the PG would help. I only just about had enough ammo for the RL to clear an escape. The switch you need to hit to raise the stairs to get to the yellow key is very easy to miss. I spent about 7-8 minutes running around the map with no clue where I needed to go next. The Arch Vile ambush is too overdone in this map for my liking, especially the one at the red key where you have very little room to manoeuvre. The PG does help a lot, but if there are corpses to resurrect then the AVs just get a bunch of free meat shields. In most cases, these were Revenants which eat quite a lot of PG fire before going down. Overall this map felt more like a chore than anything else. The difficulty of the map isn't too much of a problem, but the repetition was, and I think less AVs per ambush would still give the desired effect, or even one less instance of them.

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Map 11: I don't know if it's intentional, but you can hit this switch from down here without ever going around to it properly. The large outside area of this map was awesome - fireballs flying absolutely everywhere. The RL is very useful for taking out the Arachnatrons but it's still easy to take a ton of damage if you're not careful. Overall the map was great... for the most part. Finally getting a BFG only for it to be taken away immediately via a death exit isn't doing anything to warm me to the idea of death exits though, it just seems rather lame.

Map 12: Having to use the Pistol on a few Chaingunners isn't exactly fun. The SSG trap was cool and at least we don't have to wait ages to get some decent weaponry like at the start of the WAD.

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Okay, here are some bugs I noticed during TNS #191, hopefully other players will add ones I missed:

Map03: there are duplicate player starts (things 301 to 303). Some clips (things 162 and 162) are stuck inside walls. Linedef 2166 should be WR, not W1.

Map04: there is no way out of the acid pit on the right side of the bridge (when you're facing the yellow door).

Map08: Maybe you could add key color signs to the final 3 doors? I know they're on the bridge, but they look like pure decoration there.

Map09: Archvile (thing 108) never teleported into playable areas, because there is no sector with tag 13.

Map10: MP starts are missing. I vaguely remember they are missing on some other maps too, check that out.

Map12: if one player teleports into the SSG chamber and dies inside, the other players will be unable to get it. Maybe you could make the door (sector 107) openable from the outside?

Map13: wrong position of player 2 to 4 starts, if someone spawns there, they will be stuck inside sector 7.

And here are some warnings Zdoom reports on certain maps:

MAP07 - Scream

Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 255
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 333
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 334
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 335
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 343
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 374
Unknown bottom texture '' on first side of linedef 374
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 396
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 404
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 435
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 461
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 469
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 470
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 472
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 2784
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 2799
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 2809

<------------------------------->

MAP08 - Reptile

Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1081
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1143
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1174
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1175
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1176
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1177
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1178
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1179
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1180
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1181
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1182
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1183
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1184
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1185
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1186
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1187
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1188
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1189
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1190
Unknown middle texture '' on first side of linedef 1191
Missing texture '' is used 11 more times

<------------------------------->

MAP24 - Scorching Back

Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 469
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 470
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 471
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 527

<------------------------------->

MAP25 - The Depths

Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 41
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 42
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 43
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 64
Unknown top texture '' on first side of linedef 143

<------------------------------->

MAP29 - Sheol

Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7764
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7765
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7766
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7767
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7768
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7769
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7770
Unknown top texture '' on second side of linedef 7771

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Map 13: Hmm. The ambush at the SSG is very heavy, and would be more suited to obtaining a RL or PG I think. The other corridor there that leads to a teleport doesn't feel like the best, you spawn into an area where you could easily get boxed in by Revenants. The part just after the blue key is also tough to deal with on just SSG - I think 4 Revenants here would be more than enough. I came from the direction of the blue key, and dropping down into the area is quite challenging. If you go the other way around (and arrive at the bottom where the switch is) then it's not quite as tough, but the RL that you get later in the map would help this encounter a lot. There is a lot to kill in the final room, even though I found the secret and had some extra RL ammo. The 2 ending AVs could just be 1 and still have the same effect. Essentially everything I feel is just a little bit off in this map would be no problem at all if I hadn't lost all my weapons 2 maps ago, which is another reason I dislike death exits so much. If I had even a little bit of RL ammo carried over then this map would be great fun. As it is, it just feels more frustrating than anything and it really didn't have to be...

Map 14: Some RL ammo to shoot the Revenants would have been handy, by the time you get to the RL in this map there's almost no need for it. The area with the Hell Knights and Cacodemons was quite cool, but I was expecting there to be more there like a key or more ammo or something. It seemed like a good spot for it.

Map 15: Wow. By quite a long way this is easily the best map of the WAD so far. You couldn't have 32 of this sort of level, but this is a really great spot for a map such as this. The music sets the scene for an epic battle. It's quite linear, but it has a great feeling of clearing out some outer defences before going to the inside area. I very much enjoyed the fact the walls were high enough so you could only really get shot at by stuff in your general vicinity rather than miles away. I saw the blue key early on but actually forgot about it until I was actually able to get it, but seeing it early was a good clue that the other two would be hidden away somewhere. (Finding the red one took ages!) I found it slightly odd that I ended up with a BFG but no PG. (I see a PG in Doombuilder but it's tagged "Easy", it could probably be there for all difficulties) The interior section is nice and chaotic, but there's a good amount of ammo and health so you can deal with it. Fantastic map.

Map 31: The AV ambush in the dark is quite challenging, but anything goes in a secret map so I didn't mind it!

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Map 32: Ah a slaughterfest! I like this style of map, so I found this to be quite fun and the music for it is great. Both the first and second parts can be cheesed in part by just running out, causing infighting and then running back to the spawn location and hiding it out. In the third area, you can kill the Arch Viles before they're ever released by just shooting either side of the green block. (Don't know if you intended for that to happen) I found more than enough health, but for those who aren't so keen on this type of map, another Soul Sphere or MegaArmor in each area might help out a bit. I'm sure you'll know what I'm gonna say next... death exit? Why? To me, if you've found the three keys (not terribly easy) to access the first secret level, found the next set, survived the AV ambush AND survived this huge slaughterfest, isn't being able to keep your weapons and have a slightly easier time for a few maps a good reward for managing all of that? This is the least tolerable of the 3 so far for me.

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Map 16: Having gone back to see how Map 15 ends normally, there's no death exit, so I basically feel like I've been punished for finding and completing the secret levels. I don't see how a death exit can be justified at the end of Map 32 given that you basically have the same weapons/health opportunities available during the whole of Map 15. I have just warped from near the end of Map 32 to this one and continued. This map will be quite challenging from a pistol start due to the heavy ambushes and limited space, but otherwise seems ok.

Map 17: Not too much to say here really as it's a smallish map with decent fights. The timing for getting the BFG secret is crazy because of how easy it is to bump into the walls. Without it, the AV + 2 Baron ambush would be quite challenging. (Managed to one shot the three of them somehow!)

Map 18: The start would be very challenging from a pistol start, perhaps too much so. One less Revenant and Demon would help a bit here. If you have a RL from previous maps it's no problem though. The Revenant/Arch Vile ambush combo is getting a bit repetitive now, even though the relatively easy-to-find Soul Sphere helps. The switch hunt afterwards was quite cool as was the climbing area with the several Cacodemons + other monsters.

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Thanks degree23 for the detailed level-by-level feedback this will really help a lot in improving the wad, I agree that possible the death exit on map32 is a bit unecessary so I might take it out but I do feel that in general I designed the levels to be played from pistol start and that a death exit every now and then prevents continuous players from becoming too powerful/finding it too easy.

I was at most of the ZDaemon survival night on thursday and really had a good time although I definitely feel that the maps were too easy, I'll work on making the other half of the wad harder for when part 2 is played in a few weeks, I should have an updated version uploaded in a week or so.

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Well, many wads seem easy when there are like 20 players on the server. :) Try not to overdo it too much.

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Foodles said:

I designed the levels to be played from pistol start and that a death exit every now and then prevents continuous players from becoming too powerful/finding it too easy.


That still makes the one in Map 4 quite redundant then because you fairly swiftly get the RL again in Map 5 and there isn't enough opportunity in the first few maps to stockpile enough ammo to make you overpowered for Map 5, and where you need decent ammo for that map is at the start.

The difficulty doesn't need adjusting per se. As Memfis said, when there's about 15 of you it's a totally different experience.

Map 19: The part leading up to the blue key could use a radiation suit because you've combined damaging floor with Spectres and Chaingunners who can be difficult to shoot at as there are so many Spectres and Cacodemons relative to the size of the area. The part where you drop down to the Mancubus and Arch Vile feels very much luck based; it's too crowded to reliably use the RL. I died twice here. That area could also use a lot more RL ammo; at least another 2 boxes worth. I came into this map with 57 Rockets and 40 Cells (which I used to do a ton of damage in the yellow key area with a BFG shot onto all the Pain Elementals) and I was down to only 7 RL ammo by the end of the red key encounter. Once again the problem is that the AVs resurrected so many Revenants that it took ages for me to kill them, and you have no room to manoeuvre at all here so I couldn't pick off the AVs. I liked the lack of lighting on the Imps in the final encounter as it looked quite cool.

Map 20: Chaotic start, and I'm not sure if it really needs 2 AVs almost instantly appearing when you fire. I ran ahead to find the path to them so I could kill them quickly, but 1 AV would probably suffice here. The east portion of the map seems disproportionately difficult. The presence of the 2 AVs affects most of the room because you either have to deal with them immediately or run away. It was at this point that I remembered that you get an intermission screen before Map 21, and so I now anticipated a death exit. With that in mind, I just ran through the east wing, found the switch, then headed straight for the exit. As expected, I died. I don't really have much inclination to work out a good way to deal with the east wing and the final area when I know I'm just going to die at the end of it.

Map 21: I don't know if there's really enough ammo here to reliably kill everything on UV as it looks like you'd need some infighting. I just killed the Spider Mastermind and made a break for the exit. The Soul Sphere was a smart item to have so you don't go into the next map nearly dead. I can see why it might not be some people's favourite map, though I didn't mind it that much. There have been plenty of action packed maps so far.

Map 22: While previous AVs have been challenging to deal with at times, I'm not sure you can use them as liberally on open maps. They are much more dangerous due to their LOS attack if you're not near some cover. If you're intending for this map to be reliably UV-Maxable then it's going to need more ammo or a BFG. With no BFG the Cyberdemon will absorb a lot of your SSG and/or RL fire, and there is the potential for so many resurrections that also force you to spend your ammo. A good 15-20 enemies were resurrected on my playthrough, many of them being monsters that take 2+ shots from SSG/RL and ammo is relatively scarce on this map I feel. When considering how much ammo to place on a map, AVs don't just cost pure ammo to kill as there is also the amount of ammo you're going to need to take out monsters they can possibly resurrect. That will vary from map to map of course, but here it was so open and there were enough AVs that I had to spend quite a lot of ammo on monsters I'd already killed once.

Map 23: Wow that's a crazy start for you. I had enough RL ammo from the previous map to just kill all the Hell Knights and Barons at the start. Not too much to say about this map as it played well enough.

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Here is some stuff I noticed during my SP playthrough in Zdoom 2.8pre-1042:

Map11: linedefs 2140, 2141, 2142 and 2144 shouldn't be impassable.

Map18: chaingunner trap (sector 409) doesn't work.

Map19: all 3 radsuits (things 351 to 353) are tagged for multiplayer, make one of them for SP. Another radsuit is needed somewhere on the way to the lava soulsphere secret (sector 342), otherwise the secret is pointless (the player loses more health on the way than he acquires).

Map22: not exactly a bug, but this one IMO needs more ammo. During my playthrough, the archviles resurrected several monsters too many and I run into critical ammo shortages. Even though I scoured the entire map, I exited with 50 bullets only.

Map24: one of the lava pits (sector 171) is inescapable.

Map26: make the trap door in the starting area (sectors 894 and 895) re-openable from the inside (needed for MP). MP starts are missing. HOMs at linedefs 2522 and 5528. However, the main problem is that most lava pits are inescapable (and I'm sure many players will chide you for that). This problem is compounded by the fact that is not always clear where you can jump/drop safely and where not (around the crossroads with sector 404, for example).

Map27: Sectors 92 and 98 shouldn't be damaging.

Map30: there is nothing of interest in the secret room, why is it there? Also, the player can become stuck between linedefs 1107 and 1129.

Map32: shouldn't 3 cyberdemons in the second area (things 428 to 430) appear in MP, too?

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Played through a recent (not sure its the latest) version with a coop partner this weekend, and we had a blast for the first nine maps on skill 4. Excellent
gameplay in neat, clean yet not over-detailed maps.

The first downer comes with map10 in my opinion, both gameplay and design-wise. The archi / revenant trap is really unfair and clogs up the given area badly. Until this point, the gameplay quality was really excellent for the first episode. The turn it took towards the latter part of episode 2 and all of episode 3, with increasingly more Scythe-like gameplay, felt like a big letdown in comparison.

In honesty I was thinking this is somewhat of a pity, since we really could use one decently designed megawad with solid gameplay that doesn't try to measure sausage size with Scythe or Hell Revealed. Its one of the things I beat myself up over with Alien Vendetta as well - playing it nowadays I find the first 10 maps to flow excellent, and then it progress into tiresome repetitive battles where you spend half the time respawning and running the map over again, not because you didn't "do your job", but because the map is just too loaded to give any realistic chance of survival. And the loss of ammo makes it turn into an endless stream of further respawns.

In my opinion, fun is not had by excess deaths and respawns in cooperative, its the sense you get from surviving a challenging yet fair resistance, while exploring new maps. It took me some years to change my viewpoint on this, there's simply been too much of it and Doom gameplay works best when there's good balance, the kind you don't get by supplying 100 rockets and a mountainside of revenants over and over again.

On another note - I really liked the designs of map15 and map27, those were probably my faves, great stuff. What wonderful views and sense of location. Map15 was also forgiving enough to be fun on cooperative, and map27 was not too insane compared to the more exhausting entries of the episode.

Other personal opinions: Map30 was just downright terrible. A huge pain in the ass on coop mode, supplying no shortcuts after death, nor any teleports from the lava lake to salvage yourself from certain meltdown. Add to that a completely excessive bossespawner and you have one map I wont be playing again. Map31 was pointless.

Last but not least a few general tips:

-Make the keyed doors Stay Open. This is an easy easy fix that almost everyone always neglect, and it bogs down coop play terribly.

-Add a few coop shortcut teleporters that lower when the player pass certain reasonable points of the map, so if deaths occur you can jump back into the action instead of humping around in empty corridors. Supplying reasonable weapons in said coop shortcuts is also an excellent way to improve flow and fun on that mode.

-We got stuck a few times by doors that close on you or bars that raise, but I see you've already taken measures to avoid this, it fucked over quite a few maps, but I suppose you are aware of the danger spots for this.

-I'd really reconsider toning down the slaughterfest in the latter maps. Replayability is much more elevated with maps that don't go over the top. Taking into account two players for coop is the best way to make a fair setting, you cant count loaded Zdaemon servers with tons of players as the basis for the setting.

Overall tho this is a good effort with lots to offer, thank you for supplying several hours of free entertainment :)

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What's the soundtrack? Several are obvious, but I don't identify the MP3/OGG or the MAP04 song.

One of the demons failed to teleport in MAP03.

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Gez said:

What's the soundtrack? Several are obvious, but I don't identify the MP3/OGG or the MAP04 song.


Here's the track listing for the ogg tracks
Map15: Halo 2 - Leonidas
Map27: Super Mario Galaxy - Melty molten galaxy
Map28: Rogue Legacy - Narwhal
Map29: Rogue Legacy - Broadside of the broadsword
Map31: Mario and Luigi: Bowser's inside story - Dimble wood forest
Map32: Breaking Benjamin - Blow me away (from halo 2)

Map04's music is from TNT (map14), there's also a couple of tracks from Heretic, Hexen and some other from TNT.

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Thanks. I guess I should have played TNT more. :p

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A youtube video with funny moments from the TNS session in which we tackled map01-16 and the two secret maps is available. To warn you, these recorded moments aren't very indicative of how the wad would actually play, they are more of a collection of craziness with some things not even originally being in estranged.wad.

I also said I would post problems I noticed during the playthrough but Caleb has already mentioned almost everything I had written down and only the three following items remain from my list:

map05: tele near -3550 470 is one time only; but if it's meant only for telefragging the cyb, it's not an issue
map14: sector 326 has damaging floor even though its floor is up on a pillar
map31: no p2-4 starts

Last but not least, as Memfis and Andy said, a playthrough with 20+ players in a server probably isn't what you should generally judge the difficulty by and primarily accommodate the gameplay for.

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Map 24: Ammo to deal with the tougher enemies on this map seemed to be a little scarce. Playing continuously wasn't too bad, but from a pistol start I think there'd be some problems.

Map 25: The PG trap is a bit unfair as if the AVs spawn in first and rush through there is a very high chance of you being killed. The lighting on this level was almost giving me a headache with the constant fading to total darkness in a lot of places. The backpack is helpful, but even stocking up I still found myself running low on ammo, especially SSG.

Map 26: Considering the state of ammo and weapons in general, when you're given a lot at the start you know you're in for a long map. A MegaArmor by at least the second huge area (with the 3 Cyberdemons) is necessary I think. So many consecutive large fights on a maximum of 100/100 can be quite tedious because it doesn't really allow you to take too many hits, and certainly not any big ones, which is very difficult with the sheer number of projectiles flying around. That and there were quite a lot of damaging floors around. Apparently there were over 200 monsters I hadn't killed by the end but I've no idea where most of them were. Good map overall, this kind of map would be great fun in co-op. (Or TNS!)

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Map 27: Awesome music. I wanted to like this level, a lot. But it's actually one of the most frustrating, and therefore least enjoyable, maps I've played in some time. Cacodemons and Lost Souls descending over walls for the majority of the map was nothing short of a massive pain in the ass. It was so consistently irritating that the second half of the map I saved after every small fight that went well. The fundamental layout of the map is very enjoyable, but the fact that Cacodemons, Pain Elementals and Lost Souls were continuously climbing over walls at every opportunity (instead of going around them) meant I was often being attacked from places I couldn't see. Ways of blocking them from doing that or replacing a lot of them with other enemies are the only things that would make this map tolerable for me. It's currently on a list of maps I will never touch again.

Map 28: Rogue Legacy music! This map was a bit of a grind but I liked the implementation of the tower-hopping concept. The biggest downside was that I felt like I was being sniped by Arachnatrons from a long way away quite a bit of the time so maybe they shouldn't be quite as prominent on the corners of structures. Sniping by other monsters isn't so bad because it's only one shot at a time.

Map 29: Don't have too much to say about this map because to me this always feels like it should be challenging and lengthy as it's the lead up to the final confrontation in the last map. I do feel the final area needs a bit of work though. 2 AVs off the bat with so little cover is quite challenging, but after that there's no challenge as you can circle strafe everything, plus there isn't anything with more health than a Hell Knight. This area really needs a Cyberdemon or 2 to guard the exit, with a longer wait time before the exit fully descends. Contrary to some of the previous few maps, there was a decent helping of ammo here.

Map 30: I quite liked the path you had to run in order to activate the switch to open the path to the final room, but holy shit the 2 AVs just as you drop down are SO unnecessary. In my first 3 attempts at this map they both blasted me as soon as I dropped down. I'm glad you can fire the rockets from the very top of the platform and not from part way up, that makes the multi-spawning IOS not too bad. I don't know how I noticed the jump to the secret, but I did somehow. I'm not sure what it was though. I sort of feel it was a reference to an earlier map or something, but I couldn't work it out.

Overall, for a one person effort, this is a fantastic mapset for the most part and certainly more than enough good maps to play through. A great job! Without doubt my favourite map is 15 by a long way. BTSX2 Map 14 recently got added to my all time top 10 maps list, and Map 15 from here is also now in there as the combination of layout, music and gameplay added together to make an incredible map.

So you don't need to read all of my posts again, if I were to make changes to this WAD (from the perspective of continuous UV), these would probably be the main ones:

  • Removing the death exits in Map 32 (which is just outright unfair) and Map 4 (which doesn't deprive you of anything you don't immediately get access to in Map 5)
  • Removing the Baron in Map 2, or replacing it with a Hell Knight
  • Teleporter to escape in Map 4 if you fall off the bridge to the yellow door
  • Reducing the AV/Rev ambush combos in Map 10
  • Reducing the ambush at the SSG in Map 13, or making it a RL instead
  • Earlier access to the RL in Map 14 as by the time you get it you almost don't need it
  • Make the PG all difficulties in Map 15 as you get a BFG anyway
  • Some Soul Spheres/MegaArmor in the 3 sections on Map 32
  • More RL ammo for Map 19, especially for the AV/Rev ambush. Radiation suit also needed for the Spectre/Cacodemon/Chaingunner section
  • In general, more ammo is probably needed for at least the SSG, but probably the RL as well on Maps 21 through 24
  • MegaArmor is definitely needed earlier in Map 26
  • Exit to Map 29 could use a Cyberdemon or 2
You should consider adding a map to Slaughterfest 3 as Map 32 was for the most part an excellent slaughter map.

I look forward to future maps from you!

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Finished MAP09 in my GZDoom playthrough. The archvile in the "secret" holding cell never teleported out. It seems like it has nowhere to teleport to (no sector tagged 13), as well as no trigger to open its cage (no action affecting sector tagged 1).

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MAP13, the lift out of the nukage pool (the one where cacos are hidden in the nukage) is a damaging sector.

Also, the monster teleport cell in the top right corner seems to loop in on itself.

MAP14, the small pillar/column/plateau/whatever with an ammo box on it near the start is also marked as a damaging sector.

MAP32, there's a lost soul stuck in the void to the north of the east of the third area (the one with the base). Thing 594, coordinates 15744, -160.

MAP18, the teleporter next to the exit door does not work (no sector tagged 17). The three chaingunners in sector #409 are never unleashed, there's no linedef activating tag 11.

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I've updated the link in the op and I'll add a link to the updated version below. I've been focusing on the second half of the maps in anticipation for TNS and so I haven't got around to fixing a lot of the bugs in the early maps yet but rest assured I will. I've read all the feedback in this thread and appreciate the time everyone's taken to play through this.

http://www.mediafire.com/download/ax96bsi06msksde/Estranged_1.2.zip

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Foodles said:

I've posted the latest (and hopefully final) version but if anyone does find any issues please report them here or PM me, otherwise I'll try and get around to uploading this to idgames within the month.


Is there a changelog of what was edited in this recent version?

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Played the first four maps and had some good fun. It was interesting that there was no SSG until the beginning of MAP05 without making the gameplay terribly tedious as a result (except for maybe the hellknight bum rush near the end of MAP04).

Slight nitpick: it was odd that there were a bunch of shotgun shellboxes in the beginning of MAP04 only to figure out after the yellow key that there was a gap of ammo in many of the rooms (there was a moment when all I had left was the chainsaw and had to backtrack a bit to find the shellboxes I passed by and thankfully didn't waste). I suppose I noticed it because I had full ammo from the previous level. I guess what I'm trying to say is that the ammo was given well ahead of time, which while this is good for a pistol start, this might harm the continuous playing user.

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Gonna be trying this out on stream shortly (twitch.tv/kraflab), in case you want to watch. I will edit in the link to the vod afterwards at any rate.

Edit: http://www.twitch.tv/kraflab/b/667567946
Played through the first half (1-15+31-32), will continue next time. Like the maps more or less so far. Some were kind of tedious to me but nothing too egregious. Some of them I thought were quite fun.

Edit2: Final thoughts: pretty fun overall. Some levels in the final 10 maps dragged on a bit for me, especially the level with all the dark mazes... Ended well on the last two maps I think.

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Hi,

I played this yesterday for the first time in Survival coop, 1 life, no item respawn and it was excellent overall. The architecture and layout reminds me of Alien Vendetta mostly, the first episode for instance mirrors back to AV 01-05 with that rocky theme combined with tech bases, then I loved how it changed to 'Thy Flesh Consumed' in Episode 2 with the tricksy E3M2 type map thrown in there (-:

I think you've really nailed that tricky combination of continuous gameplay flow with interesting layouts, I never felt I was forced to slow down or the game itself became tedious from choosing to either play slowly clearing each room or speedrunning through areas in some of the latter maps, both styles seem to work well with these maps. So I don't think much should be changed as I love maps where you can both play them at a normal pace and speedrun them with interesting outcomes due to the non-linear design.

I like how the design is non-linear from the start but not intricate or confusing enough to make you get lost much, I don't have any honest complains other then a few AV + Rev combo spawns which can trap you quickly if you don't reach fast enough and it could have used more Cybers, just a very solid mapset from beginning to end with nice detail despite the restriction of vanilla textures. It was quite lulzy how half the OST is Doom 1 then all of a sudden MP3's show up on MAP15 then in a bunch for 27-29 :P

I also loved the abundance of Green Armors in the later maps, was nicest for coop (-:

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Played it up to level 5 and OMG what a surprise it was! A beautifully textured level highly reminescent of Thy Flesh Consumed, this is just my kind of thing! Not to mention the wicked, wicked difficulty and the monsters being able to follow you throughout the entire level. Had to reload like 15 times. Dammit! But I do like this kind of difficulty, the level really was a blast. Also props for scripting the pistol start - didn't know it could be done.

BTW where do you open that teleporter to telefrag the Cyberdemon? I've noticed that up till this level there was always this one secret that was notoriously hard to find in each level, counterintuitive as hell.

The techbase levels were also beautiful. All in all I must say I'm really impressed with the mapset thus far. I breezed past Map 6 and entered Map 7 and those are also wonderful E4 maps. But I'm a stickler for 100% secrets always, and it's gonna bother me if you don't tell me how to get that map 5 secret, haha.

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Yo I'm back to give to you the Final version of Estranged! Unfortunately at some point in the last 5 years the rules for uploading to idgames have changed and OGG files are no longer accepted and since I feel that changing the music to stock doom tracks would change the spirit of the affected levels it seems there won't be an idgames release :(

Fear not thought because I have provided a link below that will let you download and play this 32 level mapset!

I'd like to thank everyone who left feedback, particularly kmxexii for his in depth, level-by-level review of the project, I do appreciate it and I enjoyed reading it.

Download: http://www.mediafire.com/download/s1gdhofpowathvt/estrangd.zip

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Foodles said:

Unfortunately at some point in the last 5 years the rules for uploading to idgames have changed and OGG files are no longer accepted and since I feel that changing the music to stock doom tracks would change the spirit of the affected levels it seems there won't be an idgames release :(


???

I uploaded a set to idgames a few days ago containing OGG music and it was accepted.

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