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MrGlide

Do you study other Games to improve your doom mapping design?

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Do you study other Games to improve your doom mapping design? and if so what games have you learned the most from?

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I'm sure a lot of people that prefer to make semi-realistic maps take inspiration from the build engine games (Duke Nukem 3D, Blood, Shadow Warrior) but personally I like the abstractness in dooms levels.

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I learnt the most from Jill of the Jungle:

- clashy psychedelic texture choices
- leaps of faith combined with the occasional death pit
- unwanted and often guessing-based switch puzzles
- rubbish combat with short-ranged weapons
- permanently missable secrets
- gimmicks in every level
- blessedly de-masculinized main character
- self-aggrandizing text and logos scrawled throughout the levels
- uncut moon drugs

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Yes I do.
I learn how to style my design based off the various styles, rooms, building, etc from Quake 1. Whenever I play Quake, I take note of something that catches my eye, or something that would look interesting to building. As well as the layout of the level.
I also take notes from games like Blood, Unreal, and Quake 3 arena to a lesser extent.

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Dark Souls actually helped me a lot to understand better how I can place enemies and point of interests, etc

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BoJustBo said:

I'm sure a lot of people that prefer to make semi-realistic maps take inspiration from the build engine games (Duke Nukem 3D, Blood, Shadow Warrior) but personally I like the abstractness in dooms levels.


For me it was Quake 2, Half-Life, Unreal and Sin for those industrial maps that I seem to nail.

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Deadwing said:

Dark Souls actually helped me a lot to understand better how I can place enemies and point of interests, etc


Definitely Dark Souls. When I designed my recent map, there's a pair of locations directly inspired by the Souls series: a long thin underground cave with bridges criss-crossing it, which was inspired by the Chalice Dungeons of Bloodborne, and just after that a dilapidated rectangular prison section that you traverse back and forth a few times, that was lifted directly from Demons Souls' classic Tower of Latria level.

Miyazaki is just a genius when it comes to level designs.

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+1 to the Soulsborne pile. Though for me it's less "study" and more "accidentally pastiche something I've been binge-playing".

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The Half Life games. HL2 is particularly good (duh), for an FPS it has everything you could ever want in terms of fight setups and layouts. I would imagine FPS games offer the most transferable ideas but i don't play many outside of Doom and Half Life these days...

However, i must say that in terms of Doom mapping, i have learnt more by simply studying Doom maps i really like, and understanding why i like them and how the mapper has gone about the bit of mapping in question. I learnt every Boom 'trick' i know so far from poking about in Ribbiks maps in a level editor. You can't pick up Doom-specific tricks (of which there are many) from other games.

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I don't think I ever studied other games rather than just taking some inspirations from things I thought they were cool. Though probably I make many stuff inspired by other games I played a lot unconsciously.

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I'm endlessly inspired by layouts and environments from other titles, especially fantasy rpgs that feature outdoor/underground ruins. However due to this fetish, I can't really incorporate much into my doom mapping, because staircases are the primary mode of transition between heights and are incredibly wasteful of segs/planes, same problem with crumbling brick walls.

As far as implementation of techniques (and straight-up ripoffs of areas) in maps that I've actually finished and released, most of what I draw upon is other pwad mappers.

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For me the most inspirational games in this aspect are typically the arcadey ones with very limited possibilities in level design. Like in Wolf3D you only have orthogonal walls, doors, keys, 6 or so enemies, 4 weapons. Or in Supaplex you have very few objects that you quickly learn about, and then the rest of the levels just recycle them. And yet somehow there are a lot of inventive designs in these levels, and they put you in a mindset where just seeing a new graphic or an unusual combination of familiar objects is very exciting. I like that feeling. I think Nicolas Monti is an example of a mapper who got very close to recreating it.

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Although I'm not that good of a mapper (I am willing to learn), I have been studying the gameplay mechanics of many games I have come across in my life, not just FPS's. That gives me a lot of motivation and allows me to learn more experience in ACS and DECORATE; not to mention the fact that I have gotten better at spriting.

You could say I'm working on becoming the jack-of-all-trades, but don't quote me on that heh. ;)

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yakfak said:

I learnt the most from Jill of the Jungle:

Weird, came here to mention it, thinking nobody would even think of this game...

I honestly tend to prefer the early 90s for level design inspiration, as there weren't well-defined rules and it was a free-for-all of making abstract things with few assets. Things like Diablo, Gain Ground, Take No Prisoners...

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If anything, I'd study doom mapping design to improve on making other games if I'd ever be a level designer for a company.

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joe-ilya said:

If anything, I'd study doom mapping design to improve on making other games if I'd ever be a level designer for a company.

Hear hear! You can't beat the best (realism is for chumps.)

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