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kuchitsu

What is most likely to make you play a wad?

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This could be a poll I guess, but I'm afraid that I'll miss something obvious and important. So I'll just write some possible answers here, and then you can add more, choose what applies to you the most, or maybe even line them up in some order.

Possible answers:
- alluring screenshots
- the author ("wow, an Erik Alm wad! I have to play this")
- detailed description of what's inside
- positive comments by other people
- complaints about it being too hard (this will attract Ribbiks and such I think)
- custom music
- the fact that it uses new resources
- the fact that it is made for a particular port
- the author specifically asking for feedback, technical help, etc
- ...

Not trying to become a marketing genius or whatever here, but sometimes I find it tricky to explain why a wad got so much\little attention. I've talked to some people that were frustrated about this before, and I never quite figured out what kind of advice I should give them.

edit: here is an old and kinda relevant topic -> https://www.doomworld.com/vb/wads-mods/69777-effort-quality-and-reception/

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I'm way more willing to try something that is vanilla compatible whether it uses new assets or not. Whenever something requires limit removing ports I'm less likely to bother, even more so if it requires a specific one.

Screenshots also help. Unless the map author is new and asking for feedback, no one wants to play a map that ends up being a series of linear square rooms with a hundred enemies in each. Unless that's your fetish.

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Comparison. If someone else is making a Brutal Doom related wad I want to check it out and see what they have done differently.

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I'm much less likely to play a large map. I'd rather play an episode of eight 5 minute maps than a single 40 minute map.

Less likely to play maps that require non-standard doom behaviour like jumping, or are in some way un-doom like (eg. story cutscenes, custom weapons).

Generally less likely to play maps that require (G)Zdoom for the above reason.


A short description of what the map is like and the intended port is usually enough. Gameplay is king for me so I don't care about screenshots.

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- the author
I try to avoid this, as I used to miss very talented people or things right up my alley for years until I noticed them. Still, when my favorites do something I'll obviously pay attention. I want my Gusta maps.

- complaints about it being too hard
Yeah. That's my jam. And those complaints are way too cute most of the time so I go and check that.

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- Made by an established author is probably the biggest one. When I see skillsaw as the thread starter and megawad in the title there's not much else needed for me to download and play it.
- Being a megawad or at least episode length in maps. I almost never play single maps and prefer to play something longer with a good difficulty curve and nice visual/design progression.
- Complaints about the difficulty. "Two Archviles near a staircase? That's bullshit!"
- High quality visuals. I'm not going to play something that looks like the last shit I took, especially if the author is claiming it's "oldschool" or "90's". Romero/E1 dickriding is also ignored.

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Interesting visuals (so partly screenshots, I guess) and possibly the author's prior track record if I've enjoyed said author's past works.

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for me it's

- author
- good screenshots
- detailed description (if the author cant be bothered, then neither can i)

bear in mind i am quite new to Doom PWADs so this may be different for one of the veterans...

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If it looks good, isn't port-specific (although I'll still bite on 'Boom-compatible') and doesn't contain many (or sometimes any) new monsters or weapons (because they're usually awful, sorry) I'll take a look.

I go weak for custom textures though; especially if the stock ones are no longer necessary. Custom monsters and weapons, nope - textures a good ol' HELL YEAH. Not a deal-breaker without, like. I can still nonetheless enjoy something like Base Ganymede Complete which only replaces the skies.

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- Good topic name and name of map (very important. Without good name, no interest :/ )
- Screenshot (Good and interesting map design)
- Challenge map (Many monsters)
- New good music :)

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Screenshots are important, but what really makes me willing to try a wad is comments from the author that explain the design philosophy and what style to expect.

A description like "10 awesome new Hell-themed maps in this mini-campaign!" or "these maps were all created during a 24-hour mapping challenge" is way less interesting to me than something like "These are short, linear maps imitating an E2 style with a heavy emphasis on traps and finding secrets to survive. Expect high ammo and low health." A high-concept theme can be cool, but I need low-concept statements about the design to get me excited about actually playing it instead of noclipping around to look at the architecture.

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- The Author
I give any aspiring mapper a chance, but I'm really psyched for a map, or a megawad with names like Jim Flynn, Sverre Kvernmo, Anders Johnsen, Kristian Aro, Erik Alm, and Jan van der Veken, or even a Team TNT project.

- Gameplay
Has to be fun and addictive, also challenging, but fair.

- Level Design
That would pretty much fall into the author department since each mapper has their own unique style. There are also some mappers like Jan van der Veken that follow the "dtwid" approach, so if they do a map/set in the style of John Romero, American McGee, and especially Tom Hall, I'd give it a whirl.

- Vanilla Compatibility
I don't mind maps that push the limits and require source ports like Boom (my most-preferred port) and ZDoom, but wads that require no source port have always been my cup of tea.

- Custom Music
Whether its music from other games and new and original soundtracks, they're neat, but I'm most likely to play a wad that uses music from Duke Nukem 3D and/or Rise of the Triad. Props to Apogee/3D Realms for providing such endless amount of fun and entertainment. They are the best PC game developer ever!

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T-Rex said:

- Vanilla Compatibility
I don't mind maps that push the limits and require source ports like Boom (my most-preferred port) and ZDoom, but wads that require no source port have always been my cup of tea.


Actually, I'll echo this one. Being able to take a wad for a spin in Brutal Doom or Immoral Conduct or whatever mod should I feel like spicing it up, is a nice option to have. When I see 'vanilla compatible' that's another thing that will appeal to me, because then I know it'll be supported by pretty much everything.

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1. Author who's work I recognize and enjoy, or new mapper looking for advice.
2. Vanilla, limit removing or boom
3. Screenshots show large areas, super shotgun, rocket launchers and tough monsters.

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Mainstream stuff. I don't really like the "I tried experimenting with those texture combo/weird gameplay/annoying progression ideas etc.. approach.

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Screenshots, time to complete map and no excessive detailing. Also no ridiculous puzzles.

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Immersion, nostalgia, good gameplay, atmosphere.

I for some reason enjoyed stuff like DTWiD, DTWiD2 and KDiZD more than I did many much harder WADs. One exception could be CC4, which had an amazing atmosphere in its own right, something not many WADs before its time could achieve.

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ratings on idgames. will play only 4 or 5 stars :p

jk, it's mostly interesting screenshots, especially in case of authors i don't know, and comments regarding gameplay. likewise, uninteresting screenshots (plain square rooms, flat lighting etc) put me off.

if it's something by a well known author (see how everyone came to look at ancient aliens), then it's mostly a must play.

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Maybe some people misunderstood the question a bit... "Immersion, nostalgia, good gameplay" - can you really know whether it's good or not without playing the wad first?

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Pretty screenshots showing moody locations. Preferably with good custom resources, but clever use of stock content might work too. I crave atmosphere above all.

If I'm conflicted over what I'm seeing, lots of positive comments may still convince me.

Graf Zahl said:

Good looking screenshots amd interesting map layout are what sells most maps for me.

Graf Zahl said:

amd

That's uncharacteristic.

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