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Are there any maps that are famous (or infamous) for being very dark?

I see quite a few players play Doom with OpenGL source ports with dynamic lighting enabled, but I cant think of many maps where its too dark to where the dynamic lighting would really make the map come alive. The doom IWADs have some cool dark alleys, or areas with flickering lights, or traps where the lights shut off. I dont see much of this in modern maps though.

What is Doomworld opinions on darkness? Is it fun to fight monsters in the dark? Are some monsters made extra hard when they're in the dark? I think hitscanners and pinky demons/spectres can be pretty pesky in pitch black but the full bright fireballs of imps and hell knights are probably prett ok right? Pain elementals are probably pretty fun to seek out since the lost souls are full bright too -- just follow the path of enemies to the source!

I think there's potential for some good fun in dark maps but I cant think of many maps that do it well. What are some tips to using darkness well as a gameplay factor?

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40oz said:

Is it fun to fight monsters in the dark?

No, I never find it fun fighting things you cannot see.

P.S. I see darkness as more of a aesthetic thing, e.g. it makes sense that caves or secret tunnels would be dark. But when it is used as a gameplay trap or gimmick, that just annoys me.

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I must fight the demons. But how do I fight if I can't see them?

This stuff kinda depends too much on the settings to really rely on it. Often the author claims he made a dark map but people seem to think otherwise. Or he receives darkness complaints about a level where he feels totally comfortable. There is also gamma correction, which will get you through all but the most extreme situations like a zero brightness. But zero brightness is not very interesting design-wise.

My best darkness idea was in CONTSYST.WAD. You're fighting in a pitch black room that lights up only while you're standing on small bright lines that are always visible. So you want to stand on them, but sometimes you have to step off in order to dodge. I didn't develop this very far though.

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I think some of the later levels in the first Doom (episode 3) can get really dark. It can be effective, I think, but the effect looks much better / creepier in software-mode.

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I've not encountered a wad yet where the Dynamic Lighting option seems to do anything, I turn it off for most older WADS.

I'm currently playing PSX Doom and the "ligts out" parts are a pain, wall humping and spinning in circles with the map overlaid isn't fun.

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I like when mappers use light variation in such a way that the player gets to see a room which is partly bright and partly dark, and the bright part catches his attention enough so that he initially fails to notice monsters (or whatever) hiding in the dark part - that's potentially a better hideout than if the whole room was dark.

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I love when maps have fun with light and dark.

Was just playing Absolutely Killed, e1m4 and e1m6 do some epic things with darkness.

As long as the combat isn't rocket launcher-specific, I don't really have an aversion to bumping around in the dark for a spell, and progressive darkness is already built into the engine. Plus hell can be either bright or dark, just logically.

I really associate grim darkness with the Sunlust experience, stuff like MAP30 where oh god this is for real now. A lot of the other really huge epic maps are contrasted green/highlights against a dark forboding backdrop.


Oh, and Estranged MAP25, that's a good example. Drenched in fluctuating blackness.

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