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WAD Level design hints/tips?

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Each time I start a new WAD, I draw a complete blank to how I could go about designing sectors, rooms, etc. Most of my WADs end up being labyrinth-like levels or overly-simple short WADs. where can I draw inspiration for complex level design?

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You can open the Doom WADs, Ultimate DOOM, DOOM 2, Final DOOM then take a look at the ID's maps like E1M1 for example. You should also be able to load any custom maps in the Doom Builder you're using, looking at what other's have done could give you some inspiration. Just try not to copy others tooooo much.

You could google image search things like "Doom maps, floor plans, building interiors, ___ architecture, historical monuments". You could look at the map design of other decent first person shooter games. You can draw inspiration from everything around you.

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The thing is you can't. Don't take that as being negative. If you have the skill it will come out..if you don't forget about it.

What I suggest is make what you can. Then make another and another and another. After you learn the editor then your mind can think about design. If you live in a house do the floor plan.

Don't be afraid to copy something you like. I don't mean copy and paste. I mean copy it. It will teach you new techniques. I have seen architecture and scenarios in maps that I thought great so I tried to put those in my maps....Originality is great but...remember that joke from vaudeville? They tell it to this day and it still makes people laugh so don't worry about being original now.

I have made dozens of maps and many are crap but it doesn't stop me from mapping because I like it..it's about as artistic as I get.

Make some maps and release them...you may get some nasty comments but that's on them. What they are writing can be presented two ways so pay it no mind.

Ask questions...there are many good helpers...and Good Luck. Be your harshest critic but don't worry about simple maps at the start..You are doing it..mapping
and I hope it's fun for you

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If you're a little new to mapping, then think of mapping like just a sentence.

For example, DOOM II MAP01 says "You are entering the fray again".

DOOM II MAP02 says "We're still taking things slowly".

DOOM II MAP03 says "Alright, we're picking things up a bit, so be on your toes!".

Your map shouldn't be just some finished design, but also a message to the player.

Well --- that's one random hint or tip from me, at least.

As a mapper you are communicating with the player. It's great to "communicate" a great aesthetic design, but it's also important to communicate something interesting - and you can work your design around the interesting things that you would like to say.

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