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Heretic slaughter megawads?

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Can you recommend exciting Heretic megawads with lots of monsters and powerup magic madness?

So far I've seen Curse of D'sparil, Hordes of Chaos (a bit repetitive, but very fun with Doom monsters in it), Carnage Galore...

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That's about it as far so know. Heretic has a tough shell to crack. I watched a speedrun of it a few days ago and almost every level completed had less than 20% kills. In many cases its just more satisfying to simply blast everything out of your way and move on than the take the time to kill them. Heretic has some cool monsters but I'd find a slaughter to be pretty exhausting without excessive time bombs, tome of powers and pheonix rod.

In general heretic seems like a big ol sand box. Yes there's monsters. You can kill them or not kill them, whatever. Yes there's powerups. You can use them or not use them, whatever.

In doom many weapons have their preferred monsters. There's a screwdriver to every screw, a hammer to every nail. In heretic, many of the weapons feel like using a toaster to change a light bulb.

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40oz said:

I watched a speedrun of it a few days ago and almost every level completed had less than 20% kills.

So do speedruns of almost all games that don't have "you must kill all monsters in this area to be able to progress further" gameplay.

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scifista42 said:

So do speedruns of almost all games that don't have "you must kill all monsters in this area to be able to progress further" gameplay.

Because it'd be boring to watch. Doom lets you dispatch almost anything very quickly, so even 100% categories remain fun. Heretic? Absolutely not.

40oz said:

In doom many weapons have their preferred monsters. There's a screwdriver to every screw, a hammer to every nail. In heretic, many of the weapons feel like using a toaster to change a light bulb.

Heh. (Agreed.)

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dew said:

Because it'd be boring to watch.

But mainly because it's simply faster that way. :P

My point is, percentage of kills in a game's non-max speedrun doesn't say anything about the game's balance.

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Doom 2 monsters deal a LOT more damage than Heretic monsters, while Heretic even lets you carry health items, so Heretic is a LOT more forgiving than Doom 2, which is good if you don't want to die and restart the game (or think about saving the game).

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It's definitely not a slaughterfest by any stretch, but the recently released Emerald Bathhouse uses Tomes of Power frequently (even though it's a short and easy level) in order to speed up the pace of the gameplay, and that was something I really liked about it.

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scifista42 said:

But mainly because it's simply faster that way. :P

My point is, percentage of kills in a game's non-max speedrun doesn't say anything about the game's balance.


That's great but I wasn't addressing the balance, whatever that word really means. I was acknowledging that Heretic monsters dont go down as quickly and easily as Doom's, which has much to do with the appeal of high monster density in Doom vs. Heretic and why Heretic doesn't have its Hell Revealed 2 or its Speed of Doom or its Sunder.

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Basically, Heretic does not have a supershotgun nor a BFG. But there are certainly plenty of ways to get rid of enemies quickly: the phoenix rod is as good as the rocket launcher, the tomed mace will destroy any non-boss enemy instantly, the morph ovum can turn up to five non-boss enemies into chickens, the tomed skullstaff is perfect for crowd control and can kill an iron lich in two shots, etc.

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Heretic may be slower than Doom but it's a lot more tactical due to the greater variety of weapons, monsters and powerups...and demos (there's more to life than these, but old habits die hard I guess) with 100% kills reflect that.

If anything it's vanilla Hexen that's the sandbox, due to the dreadful range of weapons/monsters. (and the fact that it actually is set up to be a sandbox with puzzles and a few monsters thrown in)


Hardworld isn't too bad as a slaughterfest but a small number of it's maps are impossible without infinite ammo (which is a shame cos the rest is fine). Karambaras is an infinite ammo wad, but is extremely repetitive at times. (mainly due to those big green golems, you might as well just god mode+tome cheat those with a firemace)

There is one infinite-ammo co-op wad that does work nicely in SP though, and that is Hehretic. (you'll need to google for it or use getwad on ZD/Zand though, the original link is dead)

Aside from those, there aren't really any slaughter wads except Hordes of Chaos.

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Might be able to get something workable with this formula:

design for -fast

monsters:
*hordes of golems, gargs (with specific usage of nitro/fire variants--on fast, projectile shooters are going to sit there and keep firing. this could be interesting to explore since nitro golems won't hurt advancing normal golems, etc..)
*groups of undead warriors, sabreclaws, weredragons, sorcerers
*few ophidians, liches
*Maulotaurs seem to have just a little too much hp. Maybe have one or two but only if significant infighting will soften them.

make quartz flasks about half as rare as soul spheres tend to be, but provide potion caches, timebombs, lots of tomes, tons and tons of phoenix and claw orbs

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The first problem with making slaughtermaps for Heretic is that it requires an entirely new paradigm. I've been trying to do it and I basically have to relearn everything from scratch. Chaos Devices mean that there are no inescapable setpiece battles and transitional areas can serve as unintentional chokepoints if you're not careful. Wings of Wrath mean that you have to design every single sector with the expectation that the player will have access to it. And you can't use Disciples unless you don't mind the player having an unlimited supply of Tomes of Power at that point.

The second problem is that there's a very small number of IWAD textures, many of which are variations of each other, and most of which look awful on large continuous surfaces. That means making arenas is much harder and requires an entirely different style of mapping than Doom.

The third and perhaps most insurmountable problem is that there are very few Heretic source ports (as far as I can tell it's basically just Doomsday and ZDoom-derived ports that support the game at this point, and the latter have no dedicated compatibility option for it) and definitely no limit removing or Boom-equivalent ones, which means that anyone mapping for Heretic is either stuck with the vanilla limitations or has to contend with significant gameplay changes from the original.

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Reiken said:

design for -fast


BPPT!


Solarn said:

The first problem with making slaughtermaps for Heretic is that it requires an entirely new paradigm. I've been trying to do it and I basically have to relearn everything from scratch. Chaos Devices mean that there are no inescapable setpiece battles and transitional areas can serve as unintentional chokepoints if you're not careful. Wings of Wrath mean that you have to design every single sector with the expectation that the player will have access to it. And you can't use Disciples unless you don't mind the player having an unlimited supply of Tomes of Power at that point.


All very true points, though I have to raise the point that disciples drop tomes so rarely I wouldn't worry about it. Plus, more tomes is almost never a bad thing. The problem with some of this, though, is that you also have to plan for players saving even the one and only tome you give them for that tough fight later on. You're almost best off just designing everything to either require a specific number of tomes, or none at all.

Solarn said:

The second problem is that there's a very small number of IWAD textures, many of which are variations of each other, and most of which look awful on large continuous surfaces. That means making arenas is much harder and requires an entirely different style of mapping than Doom.


Yes lol; 99. But that just means more room for detail! Ugh.

Solarn said:

The third and perhaps most insurmountable problem is that there are very few Heretic source ports (as far as I can tell it's basically just Doomsday and ZDoom-derived ports that support the game at this point, and the latter have no dedicated compatibility option for it) and definitely no limit removing or Boom-equivalent ones, which means that anyone mapping for Heretic is either stuck with the vanilla limitations or has to contend with significant gameplay changes from the original.


+++1

This is perhaps my biggest problem with Heretic right now, but maybe one day in the future we'll have something like a PrHeretic+ heh.


Way off topic:

Spoiler

Some time in the future, when the ground work plus a few maps have been 100% finished, I'll likely open up a project I've been working on as a CP. Most of these things I've taken into account thus far, plus many others I just don't have time to type up right now, but including enemy variety vs Doom's best, plus balancing and incorporating small, wand-start, arcade-style maps to keep things pressuring and moving quickly, with a heavy emphasis on item use. The first level turned out decently for using just stock everything and I posted on these forums a month or two ago, if you search you'll find it under hairytickdm or something similar.

That nonsense all said, given that I am changing things around from their Vanilla counterparts, I really wouldn't mind some Heretic-oriented thinkers (Doom-oriented too) to talk to about changes to be implemented, as I'm on the fence about how much of the baby I want to throw out with this bath water (the weredragon has already been replaced with an egg-throwing golem, as an example). This is a limit-removing project, btw, though all changes will have to be replicated in each port's respective language. I might just have to open a thread on it later, but I'd rather talk to folk 1-on-1 or in small groups because ideas flow best that way. Send me a PM if you want to see what I've got so far.

Apologies for the off-topic recruitment, heh.



I love Heretic and hope to see more maps for it in the future! But mappers must keep in mind that items are what truly sets Heretic apart from doom; their use in a map is absolutely crucial and players should absolutely have to use them to survive on BPPT while playing aggressively.


A bit more on-subject: Cacowad recently released a map called (I hope I have this right) "Obsidian Fort" which had a pretty fun opening encounter on BPPT. The rest of the map was fun too, but not with nearly the enemy count of the beginning, hehe. Looked nice, too. A good map worth a check.

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This thread is pretty neat. I think one of the biggest differences in Heretic vs. Doom gameplay is Heretic's lack of hit-scanners. Hit-scanners force players to change combat engagement and priority. Without them Heretic's combat often comes across as one dimensional with a single tactic of 'shoot the closest enemies first'.

Another problem is that enemies drop ammo randomly (as was mentioned with the disciples' tombs of power) which really nerfs any mappers attempts at game play balance. The only sure thing to do is to put slightly too much ammo in a level and prey it is still challenging.

I wonder if there is enough interest to get another Realm of Parthoris: Heretic Community Project going for 2017? Here is a shameless plug for the last one:

https://www.doomworld.com/vb/wads-mods/71584-rop-2015-finished/

Here is another repost of my favorite Heretic level sets for those who haven't seen some of these. Many of these easily qualify as having 'slaughter' gameplay:

Thief - The Trail of the Arch-Heretic (2006) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/njhthief
Curse of D'Sparil (2010) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/curse
Heretic Treasure Chest (2010) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/htchest
Icebound (2011) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/ice-lutz
Dark Deity's Bastion (2011) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/bastion
Call of the Apostate (2011) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/apostate
Masters of Chaos (2012) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/moc11
HYMN: A Heretic Community Project (2013) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/hymn
The Realm of Parthoris (2015) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/rop_2015
Elf Gets Pissed (2016) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/elfgp

EDIT: Missed this somehow: The History of Fruit (2008) https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/heretic/Ports/hfruit_h

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Egregor said:

I wonder if there is enough interest to get another Realm of Parthoris: Heretic Community Project going for 2017?


I'd love to see that. The first one was great.

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Egregor said:

I wonder if there is enough interest to get another Realm of Parthoris: Heretic Community Project going for 2017?



Maybe the next one should replace a different episode, and eventually it might become the full megawad it was always meant to be.
Anyway, I'd be willing to help out with an OST if you decide to do that again, since I only contributed one song last time.

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Can Heretic Megawads be created where you play 32 levels in a row, like with Doom 2 Megawads? Heretic is episodic, after all, unlike Doom 2.

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Master O said:

Can Heretic Megawads be created where you play 32 levels in a row, like with Doom 2 Megawads? Heretic is episodic, after all, unlike Doom 2.

Yes and no.

In vanilla Heretic you can have up to 45 levels in five episodes of nine levels.

If you use ZDoom, you have MAPINFO and can do anything.

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