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40oz

Ancient Aliens RC1 Released

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Ancient Aliens, a seemingly secret Boom-compatible 32-map project lead by skillsaw (responsible for famous Boom-compatible projects such as Vanguard and Valiant) has had its first release candidate released today for public testing. The project features a large variety of sci-fi themes and vibrant colors rarely seen in Doom wads today. It also features several guest mappers such as AD_79, Esselfortium, Joshy, lupinx-Kassman, Pinchy, stewboy, and Tarnsman. The megawad is recommended to be played in ZDoom or Eternity to get the full experience (complete with story interludes and ambient noises).

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I dont think I did, it must have been someone else. I really didn't touch it. Congratulations skillsaw and all those involved btw. Hopefully this makes it to the cacowards and eventually to PC gamer again :)

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Ralphis said:

Wow, this showed up in my facebook trending news items

So Facebook's intrusive tracking algorithms about what might interest you are working??

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This is a pretty interesting and brutal megawad. Plotwise, it doesn't seem to take itself too seriously overall, but then again Classic Doom in general never really cared much about plot anyways. It's about slaughtering the legions of Hell, and this wad delivers in a brutal way. It also looks really nice too, and does an overall great job of presenting itself to the player.

Call me crazy, but this wad will probably get some Cacoward consideration come December.

And of course, because someone had to post it here...

http://i.imgur.com/lLxCoWM.jpg

'Nuff said.

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Pretty awesome that 22 years on mods for Doom still get attention from major gaming publications like Kotaku (where I first heard of this WAD) and PC Gamer.

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I have to admit I am torn.

There's a lot of good stuff in here - but ultimately it's all brought down by some stupid (semi-)slaughtermaps.

Is this really necessary? Since this already has 3 episodes I think it would have been better to isolate those maps in one of the three episodes, not ruin all three with them.

I think Scythe and Scythe 2 got this right. The earlier episodes were enjoyable for people preferring normal gameplay which then could easily skip over the latter parts that went all out crazy on slaughter. No such luck here. :(

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Graf Zahl said:

I have to admit I am torn.

There's a lot of good stuff in here - but ultimately it's all brought down by some stupid (semi-)slaughtermaps.

Is this really necessary? Since this already has 3 episodes I think it would have been better to isolate those maps in one of the three episodes, not ruin all three with them.

I think Scythe and Scythe 2 got this right. The earlier episodes were enjoyable for people preferring normal gameplay which then could easily skip over the latter parts that went all out crazy on slaughter. No such luck here. :(


You can't really please everyone. If you put all the tough maps near the end then a lot of players looking for a hardcore experience will get bored. I think this wad nails the perfect variety of different types of gameplay to keep the maps from feeling samey in each episode. This is clearly meant to be a challenging wad.

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rileymartin said:

You can't really please everyone. If you put all the tough maps near the end then a lot of players looking for a hardcore experience will get bored. I think this wad nails the perfect variety of different types of gameplay to keep the maps from feeling samey in each episode. This is clearly meant to be a challenging wad.



I disagree. If you mix radically different gameplay styles in the same episode you'll lose anyone who dislikes just one of those styles.

If you really want to 'please everyone', if that is even possible, you should not try to do it in a way that everyone has to deal with the stuff they do not like!

That goes especially for slaughtermaps: Those who do not like them will probably skip over the entire mod then.

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Graf Zahl said:

That goes especially for slaughtermaps: Those who do not like them will probably skip over the entire mod then.


Which is probably not that many since its receiving resounding applauss from most people

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Which maps are slaughter? I'm around halfway through and haven't gotten that impression at all from any that I've played so far.

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esselfortium said:

Which maps are slaughter? I'm around halfway through and haven't gotten that impression at all from any that I've played so far.


He did mention semi-slaughter and what that means is up to the individual. I guess Dead Simple and derivatives can be called micro-slaughter. So far I'd say maps 15 and 18 would qualify as slaughter, which is as far as I got.

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Graf Zahl said:

I disagree. If you mix radically different gameplay styles in the same episode you'll lose anyone who dislikes just one of those styles.


There's a counterargument here you're missing, though. What if you're a person who enjoys the myriad of different types of Doom map? What if you want to see different styles of map explored (ammo starvation, slaughter arenas, adventure maps)? You'd be disappointed if a mapset didn't incorporate all of those things.

I enjoy all playstyles, and I make my maps for myself. Anyone who wants a megawad catered exactly to their tastes can make it themselves (as many mappers have done). I am still working through the lower skill settings to accomodate players who want a more casual experience, though.

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Graf Zahl said:

I disagree. If you mix radically different gameplay styles in the same episode you'll lose anyone who dislikes just one of those styles.


I don't think you want one map to feel like a copy of a copy of some previous map only with more stuff. People who want a slaughter WAD can go get one at any point in time, same for adventure maps and whatnot.

Graf Zahl said:

If you really want to 'please everyone', if that is even possible, you should not try to do it in a way that everyone has to deal with the stuff they do not like!


You can't please everyone, simple as that. People can avoid levels they don't like to play on their own, there's CLEV for that... That aside these maps are also worthwhile to -nomo just for their aesthetics.

Graf Zahl said:

That goes especially for slaughtermaps: Those who do not like them will probably skip over the entire mod then.


So, you're saying those folks don't know how to change levels, so they can't check out the next map at their own leisure? Which leads to them ultimately sh*tcanning 32 entirely free levels with awesome MIDIs, just because there's a couple levels they don't like? If so, you're not making a lot of sense.

I'm sorry if this comes across a little too ranty, but I can't help but shake my head at people who are being offered something for free, and still find something to complain about, be just that they would have done stuff differently. Sorry, I don't get it, at all...

In my book, AA fits into a very interesting gap. I consider it to be somewhat like "Valiant meets Sunlust", with encounter design often being more intricate than Valiant is, but noticeably less punishing, and tight than Sunlust would be. While individual levels, or even encounters may or may not lean more towards one or the other, this WAD is in a very good place overall. And seriously: The best thing any given author can do is designing something they like to play themselves. Authors do not need to find their audiences, said audiences will find their authors, and that is a good thing.

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Graf Zahl said:

I disagree. If you mix radically different gameplay styles in the same episode you'll lose anyone who dislikes just one of those styles.

If you really want to 'please everyone', if that is even possible, you should not try to do it in a way that everyone has to deal with the stuff they do not like!

That goes especially for slaughtermaps: Those who do not like them will probably skip over the entire mod then.


skillsaw first and foremost should design and curate a set of maps that he enjoys and arrange them in the order that he prefers. He can then release the mapset and if some people enjoy it, great, if others don't, okay whatever. People forget sometimes that mapping isn't an act of charity. That sort of entitlement grates on me. What "the people" want is only secondary.

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I think people are using the term "slaughter" for any sort of situation in which there is heavy crossfire, instead of for when there are massive hordes of monsters that you have to circlestrafe for a half-hour while spamming BFG balls non-stop.

Just because the combat situation is designed so that you have to keep moving and can't easily catch your breath doesn't mean it's a slaughtermap.

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Gez said:

I think people are using the term "slaughter" for any sort of situation in which there is heavy crossfire, instead of for when there are massive hordes of monsters that you have to circlestrafe for a half-hour while spamming BFG balls non-stop.

Just because the combat situation is designed so that you have to keep moving and can't easily catch your breath doesn't mean it's a slaughtermap.


Yeah this, minus the lazy and incorrect slaughter stereotype. These days everything that can be described as having a lot of monsters and being halfway challenging for the casual player is called either "slaughter" or (ugh) "semi-slaughter". It's like, hey, guess what, that's a good 90% of anything decent being released in modern times. A basic principle is that if a term can describe most of everything, it's not particularly useful.

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rdwpa said:

Yeah this, minus the lazy and incorrect slaughter stereotype.


The correct stereotype would be "monster infighting simulator" where you do your best to shoot nothing at all and zip around the map for 5 minutes until everything dies. I love it when the best way to handle an encounter is to shoot as little as possible until the end.

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40oz said:

Which is probably not that many since its receiving resounding applauss from most people



That's probably because from the look at the responses any negative feedback to a positively received mod is shouted down so most who have something to criticize won't even post here because there's no chance that their opinion is respected.

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Thinking that your views are aligned with the silent majority is very easy, because the silent majority is silent.

Even if most people think the way you think they do, no one here is obliged to cater for them. There's no money to be found. And that's a good thing, because it allows people to express themselves the way they want.

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Graf Zahl said:

That's probably because from the look at the responses any negative feedback to a positively received mod is shouted down so most who have something to criticize won't even post here because there's no chance that their opinion is respected.


So, as it would appear, the number of players enjoying this WAD is large enough to "shout down" those who don't agree, which is saying something.

You're saying this WAD ain't no good, because of a couple maps that you consider to be "stupid semi-slaughter". Now you complain about people disagreeing on a broad-term, which you did not even explain or examplify? Ummm, OK...

Seriously though, where is the problem with skipping the occasional map that you don't like? You brought up Scythe2, said it was doing a better job, because you would essentially be able to skip an entire episode of slaughter, instead of the occasional map here and there? Why is that a plus for scythe2? At the very least, everyone gets to enjoy the unique looks of any given episode, while actually playing the map as intended.

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I also disagree with Scythe 2 being a good example. It's more frustrating than anything for a regular player to get to map 23 and ragequit because there's a huge-ass spike in map length, difficulty and playstyle. AA is consistently hard and the slaughter encounters aren't any more difficult than the rest of the maps. Scythe 1 had that problem as well where the final map is ludicrous compared to everything else in the wad.

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